Martinsville: Justin Lofton preview

* Justin Lofton was well on his way to a solid top-10 finish the last time out at Atlanta Motor Speedway on March 6th, before contact with another truck hampered the effort. Lofton started 22nd for the 200-mile race but skillfully maneuvered his...

* Justin Lofton was well on his way to a solid top-10 finish the last time out at Atlanta Motor Speedway on March 6th, before contact with another truck hampered the effort. Lofton started 22nd for the 200-mile race but skillfully maneuvered his way into the top 10, running as high as sixth before the run-in on lap 77. The No. 7 team repaired damage to the truck, salvaging a 20th place finish. After the first two events, Lofton shows 18th in the point standings.

* Off road and on track... Lofton used the two-week break in the schedule to focus on his off-track hobby of video production. The 24-year-old honed his racing skills early on racing off-road machines and returned to his roots, but only as a spectator, after trekking to Mexico for the MasterCraft Safety Tecate Score San Felipe 250. The event is featured on the next episode of Weekend Warriors TV. Following the trip, Lofton returned to the Southeast and got back to business with his team, testing the .416-mile Motor Mile Speedway in preparation for this weekend's running of the Kroger 250 at Martinsville. "It went very well. I was very pleased," Rette said of the test. "The truck was good right off of the truck. We played with a few different things and ended up right back where we were. I believe between us and Timothy (Peters, teammate), we were one of the best trucks there."

Successful short tracker... Though this week will mark Lofton's first race on the .526-mile paperclip-shaped Martinsville Speedway, Lofton is a proven, successful short track racer. Of his six race wins last season within the ARCA Racing Series, three were on short tracks. Lofton took the checkered flag at Toledo Speedway, Salem Speedway, and Berlin Raceway. All three tracks measure approximately a half-mile in length.

Justin Lofton on racing at Martinsville Speedway "I am really looking forward to getting back on a short track and doing some close racing. I know when we unload, our setup won't be far off which will help me get up to speed quick. I've tested this truck twice and feel really comfortable in it and how it reacts to the changes that Mark makes. I know that if we can get this monkey off of our back, we will be competing in the front of the field."

Crew Chief Mark Rette on Martinsville Speedway "It's going to be a learning curve. He is a great short track racer and he has great car control. We're going to take some time and watch both races from last year to learn everything we can about conservation through the race. We've had two really good trucks in both races but failed to close the door due to racing circumstance that we couldn't control. Our plan for Martinsville is to qualify up front and race up front. I think we have a truck capable of that."

Equipment Information Lofton will race chassis RHR93 at Martinsville. The truck previously ran in 2009 at Martinsville, Nashville, Kentucky, Kansas, and California.

-source: rhr

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Series NASCAR Truck
Drivers Justin Lofton