NASCAR Next driver Todd Gilliland will attempt to capture his second consecutive K&N Pro Series West championship in Saturday’s season finale.
Gilliland, the 17-year-old son of NASCAR veteran David Gilliland, leads the series standings and holds an 11-point advantage over his Bill McAnally Racing teammate, Chris Eggleston, entering Saturday final race at Kern County (Calif.) Raceway Park.
Todd, who also finished runner-up in the K&N Pro Series East standings this season, can clinch his second West title by finishing seventh or better.
Regardless of the outcome, BMR will win its third consecutive and record eighth series championship.
“I’m really proud to be part of this Bill McAnally Racing team,” Gilliland said following his recent runner-up finish at All-American Speedway in Roseville, Calif. “To keep clicking off these top-five (finishes) and do what we need to do in the points is obviously good.”
In 13 races so far this season, Gilliland has six wins, 10 top-five and 12 top-10 finishes. He has not finished worse than second in his last three races.
Kern County is a good place for Gilliland to attempt to wrap up the title. He won the pole and the race in the series’ first visit to the track back in March. He also won the pole and race last season in the series’ only stop at the track.
Gilliland is a member of the NASCAR Next class, an industry-wide initiative designed to showcase rising young stars in racing.
Eggleston has four wins this season, along with a series-leading 11 top-five and 13 top-10 finishes. He also is strong at Kern County, with top-five finishes in all three series starts at the track.
BMR’s third driver, 16-year-old Derek Kraus, can wrap up rookie of the year honors in Saturday’s race. He is currently third in the series standings but out of championship contention.