Starting to Streak … The No. 16 team’s “home game” at Charlotte Motor Speedway (CMS) marks a notable point for Austin Hill in his first season piloting the United Rentals Toyota Tundra. Hill is coming off his second pair of back-to-back top-10 finishes this season with a fourth place run at Kansas Speedway last week. The fourth race at a mile-and-a-half venue in ‘19 provides Hill the opportunity to post consecutive top-five finishes for the first time in his NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series career and continue to gain ground in the standings.
Honoring Officer Sheldon … The No. 16 team will again honor the life and service of Mooresville, NC Police Department’s K-9 Officer Jordan Sheldon at CMS. Officer Sheldon was killed on May 4th in the line of duty during a routine traffic stop near the HRE race shop in Mooresville, NC. Hill’s truck will carry a decal commemorating Officer Sheldon and his K-9 partner Ramon. Officer Sheldon was 32 years old and had served the community of Mooresville for six years.
Charlotte History … The eighth race of the season on Friday marks Hill’s third-career start at CMS. He made his debut at CMS in 2017 and posted an 18th-place finish a year ago with Young’s Motorsport.
Season to Date … The Winston, GA product gained one position in the standings last week and Kansas and now sits seventh in the Gander Trucks championship chase after seven races. Hill has one victory, two top-five and four top-10 finishes and has a guaranteed slot in the playoffs from his victory at Daytona International Speedway. Hill has compiled the fourth-most stage points in the series (62) and has earned the second-most playoff points (five) to date.
Chassis Selection … The most successful chassis in HRE’s fleet will return to competition on Friday night in Charlotte. Chassis No. 007 will make it’s second appearance of the season at CMS after most recently finishing seventh at Atlanta Motor Speedway in February. This chassis won three races in 2018, including the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
Tune In … Coverage from CMS kicks off with qualifying at 4:30 p.m. ET on FOX Sports 1. The North Carolina Education Lottery 200 green flag is scheduled to follow at 8:30 p.m. ET on FS1. Stay updated with Hill and the No. 16 team by following @Hattori_Racing on Twitter, @hattoriracing on Instagram, and Hattori Racing Enterprises on Facebook.
Austin Hill Quote:
On the progression of the No. 16 team through seven races:
“It felt great to get back into the top-five last week at Kansas. We’re definitely inching up to where we need to be. Scott (Zipadelli) and the guys are working really hard on our Tundras every week and we’re close. We need to clean up a couple areas, execute a little better and we’ll be right there in position to get another win. We have a great chance to do that this week at Charlotte with United Rentals back on the truck. We’re building a little bit of momentum over the last two weeks and starting to put some finishes together. The stages are a little shorter this week at Charlotte and you’re definitely going to need to keep track position as much as possible. Chances are there might be a couple times the field gets flip flopped on strategies and we’ll need to stay on top of that as much as we can all night.”