For two entries, Saturday’s NASCAR Camping World Truck Series event at Knoxville Raceway hopes to be a brotherly affair as Braden Mitchell and his younger brother Bryson Mitchell aim to make the race in the #53 Sparks Motorsports Chevrolet Silverado and #46 G2G Racing Toyota Tundra, respectively.
The older Mitchell previously attempted his NASCAR début at Eldora Speedway, then the only dirt track in NASCAR’s national series, in 2018 for Reaume Brothers Racing but failed. Over the next four years, he has continued his dirt career in late models alongside Bryson around the Southern United States such as North Alabama Speedway and the Talladega Short Track.
The brothers have competed in series like the Durrence Layne 602 Late Model Sportsman Series and CRUSA Dirt Late Models.
Braden posted on social media, “Ready to kick off the week with NCWTS in Knoxville, Iowa! Huge thanks to Sparks Energy for this opportunity!
Both of the Alabama-born brothers’ trucks are sponsored by Sparks Energy, which is based in their state and is notably a sponsor of Xfinity Series driver Joey Gase, who worked as Braden’s spotter for the 2018 Eldora race; Sparks Energy has also sponsored Xfinity events at Talladega Superspeedway. Gase also plans to race at Knoxville with On Point Motorsports.
Sparks Motorsports is a new team with little further information besides sharing the Sparks Energy and having longtime crew chief Mike Hillman as Braden’s lead. Hillman has crew chiefed two Truck races in 2022 for David Gilliland Racing while also working with Gase’s Emerling-Gase Motorsports team in the Xfinity Series and Rick Ware Racing in the Cup Series.
G2G Racing is a new operation for 2022 that has drawn scrutiny in recent times, aborting its initial plans of two full-time trucks in favour of one truck multiple drivers. The #46 skipped the season’s first dirt race at Bristol in March, while the team is currently mired in controversy surrounding last week’s attempt at Sonoma with Travis McCullough, who had to abandon his maiden Truck start due to delays in his drug test results and what he alleges was arriving to the track with an unfinished and unprepared vehicle.