When the NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series takes the green flag at Kansas Speedway on 17 October, Stewart Friesen will not be in the #52 Halmar Friesen Racing Toyota Tundra as usual. Due to scheduling conflicts, longtime series veteran Timothy Peters will pilot the truck in his stead.
Friesen, who competes in dirt track racing when he’s not running in NASCAR, will be spending the day racing the Short Track Super Series at Port Royal Speedway in Pennsylvania. The scheduling clash was created when NASCAR revealed the final races of the 2020 Truck season, a slate that has been heavily impacted by COVID-19; among the changes was the addition of a third race at Kansas, the Clean Harbors 200.
Although he has raced full time in the Trucks since 2017 and made the Championship Round in 2019, he missed the 2020 playoffs and sits a career-worst fifteenth in points, making the Truck race less of a priority. 2020 is Halmar Friesen Racing’s first year with a Toyota partnership.
“We are excited to see what Timothy can do with the HFR No. 52 Toyota Tundra,” Friesen said in a team release. “With his successful history in the Truck Series we are confident in his ability to drive our truck to a strong finish.”
Previously, the team had announced Christopher Bell would drive the #52 at Kansas. However, the Cup Series rookie is ineligible to run playoff events in the lower series unless he made the irrational decision to switch to Truck points.
The Clean Harbors 200 will be Peters’ first NASCAR race of 2020. Although he has bounced between various teams since losing his full-time ride at the now-defunct Red Horse Racing in early 2017, he has enjoyed success with a win at Talladega in 2018 for GMS Racing. The 2012 Truck runner-up has eleven career wins in a career that has spanned fifteen years. He has also raced in the now-Xfinity and Cup Series.
“Thank you guys for the opportunity!! Looking fwd to working with Trip and all the guys! You have a great team of guys behind you,” Peters tweeted.
In ten career Truck races at Kansas, Peters has four top-ten finishes and two top fives, including a best finish of second in the 2012 event.