NASCAR Truck Series

Michael Annett enters Knoxville, first Truck race since 2014

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Credit: Sean Gardner/Getty Images

For the first time in seven years, Michael Annett will run a NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race. On Monday, Young’s Motorsports announced Annett will drive the #02 Chevrolet Silverado in Friday’s Corn Belt 150 at Knoxville Raceway.

While the Knoxville dirt track is new to the Truck schedule for 2021, Annett’s last start in the series incidentally came on the surface in 2014 at Eldora Speedway, where he finished twenty-fifth for NTS Motorsports. Prior to that race, he ran eight Truck races in 2008 for Bill Davis Racing and Germain Racing, scoring two top tens with a runner-up finish at Kentucky.

The NASCAR Xfinity Series veteran, currently in his fifth year with JR Motorsports, sits tenth in points after seventeen races with eight top tens and a best run of third at Road America last Saturday. Annett’s last national series start outside of the second tier came in the Cup Series in 2016, his third and final full-time season at the top level.

With Iowa Speedway no longer on the Xfinity schedule, Knoxville essentially serves as Annett’s NASCAR national home track. Knoxville is approximately forty miles away from his hometown Des Moines, and his father Harrold Annett fielded sprint cars at the circuit for the likes of Mike Brooks and Sammy Swindell. The elder Annett, who served as chairman of TMC Transportation until his death, was inducted into the Knoxville Raceway Hall of Fame in 2007. TMC will sponsor Annett’s truck for the race, and the vehicle will sport a livery modelled after Harrold’s dirt cars.

“It’s been my dream to race at Knoxville ever since I can remember,” said Annett. “I can’t thank Tyler (Young, team principal) and Young’s Motorsports enough for giving me the opportunity.”

The #02 is mainly driven by rookie Kris Wright, but Kaz Grala, Josh Berry, and Daniel Suárez have also made starts in 2021. After thirteen rounds, the truck is twentieth in owner points with a best finish of second by Grala at COTA in May. Suárez piloted the #02 in the first dirt race at Bristol in March, where he finished seventeenth.

“Michael is a huge addition to the Young’s Motorsports team this weekend at Knoxville,” Young stated. “We believe he has the capabilities of delivering our organisation another top-ten finish this season in such a prestigious race which also holds a lot of sentimental value to not only himself, but the entire Annett and TMC Transportation family.”

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History major and lifelong motorsports fan who covers NASCAR and the Stadium Super Trucks.
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