By Seth Eggert, Staff Writer
A new season means a continued relationship with NASCAR Camping World Truck Series powerhouse GMS Racing for Halmar Friesen Racing. Stewart Friesen’s No. 52 Halmar International first aligned with GMS Racing last season.
Prior to the team’s alliance with GMS Racing, Friesen’s best finish was 13th at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in 2016. After teaming with GMS, HFR’s best result was a runner-up at Eldora Speedway. Friesen, whose background is dirt racing, backed that second-place finish up with a fifth at New Hampshire in 2017. In total, Friesen has two top-fives, five top-10s, and one pole position in 25 career starts to date.
Team co-owner Chris Larsen admitted that the relationship GMS caused the team’s turnaround,
“We learned a lot last year and have improved our team in every way for the 2018 season. Stewart and I are very excited for the upcoming season and we have expectations to be very successful.”
As part of HFR’s alliance with GMS Racing, the team will receive technical expertise, equipment, engineering, and support. GMS will also house the No. 52 two within their ever-growing race shop. A common, Spec Engine, the Ilmor Engine, will also allow HFR to be more competitive.
HFR will also have Tripp Bruce returning as the crew chief for Friesen in 2018. Under Bruce’s leadership, Friesen lead 103 laps. Despite missing four races to reorganize and align with GMS, Friesen finished 14th in the Championship Points Standings in 2018.
“I am excited to get back to work this season with the team,” says Friesen. “We are well prepared and have the people and equipment to give us the ability to win on any given weekend and contend for the championship. Trip and the crew are some of the hardest working, most dedicated people I’ve ever worked with. They gave me a successful rookie season and I’m confident 2018 will be even better.”
Now Bruce, Friesen, and Larsen will look to complete the entire 2018 season and be a threat for the Playoffs.