By Seth Eggert, Staff Writer
NASCAR Next alumni Harrison Burton returns to Kyle Busch Motorsports for an expanded schedule in 2018. Burton, the 2017 NASCAR K&N Pro Series East Champion, will drive the No. 51 Toyota Tundra in nine races, up from six in 2017.
Burton scored one top five in the Truck Series, at Martinsville Speedway. In his six races, he had an average finish of 12.3. In 2017, Burton also finished on the lead lap in half of the Truck races he competed in.
“Harrison made great strides as a driver in 2017 and we look forward to being a part of his continued development by expanding his schedule at KBM in 2018,” Kyle Busch said. “He proved capable of winning races in a variety of series last year and with each Truck Series start you could see his confidence grow and his performance improve. We’re confident that his first Truck Series win is just around the corner.”
Burton’s schedule includes both races at Martinsville, Dover International Speedway, Iowa Speedway, Bristol Motor Speedway, and Canadian Tire Motorsports Park. The 17-year-old will have to wait until October 9, his 18th birthday, to be able to compete on intermediate tracks. His schedule will include the November races at Texas Motor Speedway, ISM Raceway, and Homestead-Miami Speedway, two of those being intermediate tracks.
Burton considers his return to KBM a ‘huge honor,’
“Returning to KBM and knowing that they had the confidence in me to add races to my schedule for this year is a huge honor. KBM has a developed a culture of winning races and I’m confident that everything I learned throughout my six-race schedule last year has helped me be prepared to carry on the winning tradition this year.”
In route to the 2017 K&N Pro Series East Championship, Burton scored five victories. He also finished in the top-five in 12 races, and finished inside the top-10 in all 14 races. Burton had an astounding average finish of 3.2 and an average start of 3.9.
Harrison, the son of former NASCAR driver and current NBC Sports broadcaster Jeff Burton also won in the ARCA Racing Series at Toledo and the CARS Tour Super Late Model season opener at Concord Speedway.
Announcements on sponsorship and crew chief assignments will be revealed later.