PARKER CHASE RETURNS TO KBM AT COTA
May 20, 2021
Event: Toyota Tundra 225, Race 9 of 22, 41 Laps – 12/14/15; 139.81 Miles
Location: Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas (3.426-mile, 20-turn road course)
Date/Broadcast: May 22, 2021 at 1 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR 90
The Chase is On:
Parker Chase will make his second career NASCAR Camping World Truck Series start behind the wheel of the No. 51 Vertical Bridge Tundra in Saturday’s 41-lap event at Circuit of the Americas (COTA) in Austin, Texas. The 20-year-old driver resides just over 40 miles from the 3.426-mile, 20-turn road course in New Braunfels, Texas. While many drivers will be tackling the circuit for the first time, the up-and-coming sports car driver already has a victory at COTA. He won the Pirelli GT4 American SprintX Race in September of 2020 with Panoz Racing. The Texas native also made his IMSA GTD debut at COTA in 2017 as a 16-year-old and has multiple podiums there.
In his maiden NASCAR Camping World Truck Series start at the Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway Road Course in February, Chase had a fast Vertical Bridge Tundra and spent most of the event running inside the top 10. He was running 10th with nine laps remaining when he spun trying to avoid an accident in front of him. With damage to the right side of his Tundra and being stuck in the middle of the pack for each of the three attempts at NASCAR overtime, he was unable to recover and ended with a disappointing 23rd-place finish.
In addition to his two Camping World Truck Series starts, Chase will get the behind the wheel of a Venturini Motorsports Camry for a five-race schedule in the ARCA Menards Series. He will make his 2021 debut May 29 at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway and will also compete at Winchester (Ind.) Speedway (July 31), Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway (Sept. 16), Kansas Speedway (Oct. 23) and Phoenix (Ariz.) Raceway (Nov. 6). He has one prior ARCA Menards Series start, a 10th-place result at the Daytona International Speedway Road Course in 2020.
Chase is competing full-time in the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge this season. On May 15, he and co-driver Ryan Norman were victorious in the Touring Car Class at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio. The win was Chase’s first IMSA victory. The Texas native was a teammate of KBM owner Kyle Busch on the AIM Vasser Sullivan No. 14 entry that finished ninth in the 18-car GTD class in the 2020 Rolex 24 on the Daytona Road Course, and in 2018, he and co-driver Ryan Dalziel captured the Pirelli World Challenge GT SprintX Pro/Am championship.
After eight events, the No. 51 sits second in the Camping World Truck Series owner standings, 22 tallies behind KBM’s No. 4 team. The No. 51 team leads the series with three victories, with owner-driver Kyle Busch collecting victories at Atlanta Motor Speedway in Hampton, Ga., and Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, while Martin Truex Jr. picked up first-ever Truck Series victory at the Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway Dirt Track. The No. 51 team ranks second to the No. 4 team with 310 laps led. As an organization, KBM drivers have combined to lead 62.9% (694/1103) of the total laps this season. KBM has also combined to win 12 of the 16 stages this season, including five by the No. 51 team.
Mardy Lindley has guided the No. 51 team to three victories across eight races is in his first season as a crew chief at KBM. Before arriving at KBM, Lindley guided his drivers to 32 wins and four ARCA Menards Series East championships since 2013, including back-to-back titles with Sam Mayer the last two seasons. Additionally, he earned the ARCA Menards Series Sioux Chief Showdown championship with Mayer in 2020. Behind the wheel, the second-generation driver won 11 races on the Pro Cup Series from 2000 to 2006 and was crowned the series champion in 2001.
Primary sponsorship on Chase’s Tundra for Saturday’s race will come from Vertical Bridge, the largest private owner and operator of communications infrastructure and locations in the United States. Tige Boats, the world’s leading innovator, designer, and manufacturer of wakesurfing, wakeboarding, and waterskiing boats, will serve as an associate sponsor.
Parker Chase, Driver Q&A:
Parker Chase | Circuit of the Americas Preview
What does it mean to you to be making a Truck Series start at COTA?
“I grew up 45 minutes from there. I’ve raced there a lot of times and had family there. It’s exciting to be making a NASCAR Truck Series start there. It’s close to my house, so it means a lot to me, especially so close with all my family there. It’s going to be fun.”
How do you think a Truck Series race at COTA will go?
“It’s going to be interesting. It’s going to be hot. The tire falloff is going to be big. I think the key role in winning the race is going to be keeping the tires underneath you as long as you can because you have some high speeds through the essess, it’s going to destroy the tires if you don’t look after them.”
Do you think having some experience racing at COTA will give you a leg up on the Truck Series?
“I think so. I was out there last September and won with my teammate. It was a good weekend. I probably have six or seven weekends there. I know it well compared to 90% of the field.”
Parker Chase Career Highlights:
Competing full time in the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge in 2021. Picked up his first series victory May 15 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course with teammate Ryan Norman.
Was a teammate of KBM owner Kyle Busch on the AIM Vasser Sullivan No. 14 entry that finished ninth in the 18-car GTD class in the 2020 Rolex 24 on the Daytona Road Course.
Earned a top-10 finish in his ARCA Menards Series debut on the Daytona Road Course in 2020
Recorded top-10 finishes in both of his Late Model Stock races at Hickory (N.C.) Motor Speedway last year.
In 2018, captured the Pirelli World Challenge GT SprintX Pro/Am Championship with co-driver Ryan Dalziel.
In 2016, earned the Pirelli World Challenge Rookie of the Year award.
Parker Chase's No. 51 Vertical Bridge Tundra:
KBM-X134: The No. 51 Vertical Bridge team will unload X134 for Friday’s race at COTA. This is the same chassis that Chase piloted at the Daytona International Speedway Road Course earlier this year. Erik Jones won with the Tundra at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in 2015. Prior to being converted to a road course truck for the 2014 season, KBM-X134 was victorious at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway in October of 2012 with Denny Hamlin.
KBM Notes of Interest:
KBM drivers have collected one win, 85 laps led, nine top-five and 11 top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 11.4 across 26 starts on road courses in the Camping World Truck Series. Erik Jones picked up a victory at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in Bowmanville, Ontario in 2015.
KBM holds the Camping World Truck Series records for most career wins (85) and most wins in a single season (14 in 2014). With his victory at the Bristol Motor Speedway Dirt Track, Martin Truex Jr. became the 16th different driver to win a Truck Series event for KBM. In addition to collecting a series-record seven Owner's Championships, the organization has produced two championship-winning drivers: Erik Jones (2015) and Christopher Bell (2017).