Seven Truck Teams Test At Martinsville
MARTINSVILLE, Va. — Five NASCAR Camping World Truck Series teams tested two full days at Martinsville Speedway in preparation for the Kroger 250 April 6. Two more teams joined the fray on Wednesday for a one-day test.
“We had a test agenda for these two days and we’ve tried a lot of different things,” said Jeff Hensley, crew chief for Miquel Paludo. “We haven’t found a lot of speed, but we’ve gotten better on the long runs. We’ve found some speed, but mostly we’re working on consistency.
“This should help us a bunch when we come back here in two weeks.”
The seven drivers testing included Paludo, defending NASCAR Camping World Series champion James Buescher, rookie-of-the-year candidate Jeb Burton, Chase Elliott, former Martinsville winner Scott Riggs, Bryan Silas and Caleb Holman.
For Elliott, who will make about 10 truck series starts for Hendrick Motorsports this season, the two-day test was a cram session. He had never turned a lap on the difficult .526.-mile oval before Tuesday.
“I’ve learned a lot … I don’t know if there’s enough paper for you to write down everything I learned,” Elliott, son of former Sprint Cup champion Bill Elliott, said late in Tuesday’s session. “I’ve learned a lot of what not to do. But a big thing is that I’ve built confidence here for when we come back.
“I’ve learned you’ve got to take care of your brakes, but you’ve got to go fast, too. The guys that are good here … that’s what they can do. That’s what I’ve got to learn to do better.”
Riggs’s first career truck series win came here at Martinsville in 2001 and he was very comfortable back behind the wheel Wednesday.
“We need a couple more pieces of the puzzle. We came here with a different truck than we ran here last fall. It’s a brand new truck, a little lighter,” explained Riggs. “We knew we were going to be behind a bit because we didn’t have everything ready for this truck but it was still a worthwhile trip. We got better as the day went on. Anytime that you get to test on the track you are going to race on, it’s a good test.”