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Five Drivers to Watch at the 2024 Fresh From Florida 250

Christian Eckes, driver of the #19 NAPA AutoCare Chevrolet, and Matt Crafton, driver of the #88 Mold-Armor/Menards Ford, lead the field during the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series NextEra Energy 250 at Daytona International Speedway on February 17, 2023 in Daytona Beach, Florida.

The 2024 Craftsman Truck Series season kicks off with the Fresh From Florida from 250 from Daytona International Speedway on February 16th.

This will be the 25th running for the Series at Daytona and its 30th year of competition since 1995. Practice for the race begins on Thursday the 15th at 5:00 pm ET (2:00 pm PT) with qualifying on Friday at 3:00 pm ET (noon PT). The green flag wave shortly after 8:00 pm ET (5:00 pm PT) on Friday night. All will be available to watch at their respective times on Fox Sports 1.

2022 and 2023 victor Zane Smith will be absent from the event, meaning the Series will see a new winner for the first time in three years. In preparation for the night ahead, here are five NASCAR Craftsman Drivers to watch at the 2024 Fresh From Florida 250.

5. Ty Dillon

Rackley WAR has signed on Ty Dillon as their full-time driver for 2024. The 2011 ARCA Menards Series Champion returns to the Craftsman Truck Series after competing for his grandfather’s team, Richard Childress Racing, from 2012 and 2013. Dillon entered the 2012 finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway with an eligible shot at the Championship before a late crash resulted in a 4th place points finish. His 2013 season saw better results, finishing the year runner-up in the standings.

Dillon went on to race full-time in the NASCAR Xfinity Series from 2014 to 2016 before making the move to the NASCAR Cup Series. Four years were spent with Germain Racing until their closure in 2020. He raced for Petty GMS Motorsports in 2022 followed by last season’s tenure with Spire Motorsports. With a fresh start and a new home, Dillon targets a return to weekly competitiveness.

4. Toni Breidinger

24-year-old Toni Breidinger is set for her first ever Truck race on a superspeedway. Last year, she started in three events for Tricon Garage’s No. 1 entry finishing a best of 15th in her debut at Kansas Speedway. Her start was the first ever for an Arab-American female driver to compete in one of NASCAR’s three premiere Series. Breidinger would finish 24th at Gateway Motorsports Park and 17th at Nashville Superspeedway.

Currently, Breidinger is the most-followed NASCAR driver on Instagram with over 2.1 million followers. Her impact and influence on women in motorsports has been of great importance as she continues to evolve her craft behind the wheel. This season, Breidinger will race full-time for Venturini Motorsports in pursuit of the Series Championship.

3. Stefan Parsons

Many consider North Carolina’s own Stefan Parsons as one of the most underrated drivers in the garage. Although a full-time opportunity has yet to materialize, he will get the chance to pilot a Truck for the first time at Daytona. Parsons will race in the No. 75 for Henderson Motorsports at the Fresh From Florida 250, which will be his twelfth Series start since 2018.

Parsons has spent most of his NASCAR tenure competing in the Xfinity Series. Daytona came as his debut piloting the B.J. McLeod Motorsports entry to a strong 12th-place finish. A full-time schedule was originally set in 2022 but would diminish to a handful of starts. His best finish to date came later that year with an 8th at Bristol Motor Speedway. Son of veteran greats Phil Parsons and the late Benny Parsons, Stefan hopes to continue his family’s legacy with a career in NASCAR.

2. Johnny Sauter

Johnny Sauter will return to the Series for a single start with Niece Motorsports. Whether part-time or full-time, the longtime motorsports competitor has been a face in NASCAR every year since 2001. Sauter is the 2013, 2016, and 2018 Daytona race winner as well as the 2021 polesitter. He also is the 2016 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Champion. His 24 victories and 2,671 laps led are ranked 5th and 7th all-time, respectively.

Sauter’s first-ever start in the Series came in 2003, but his first season came in 2009. Overall, he would spend ten years driving for ThorSport Racing and three years from 2016 to 2018 for GMS Racing. Since 2022, he has raced in nine events for four different teams including two Top 5’s with ThorSport. Come Friday night, a win will be Sauter’s only goal as the driver hopes to one day return to weekly contention.

1. Corey LaJoie

Full-time NASCAR Cup Series driver Corey LaJoie will aim for the checked flag in the Fresh From Florida 250. Last year, the same intentions were planned between him and his Spire Motorsports team. LaJoie led a total of 19 laps before getting split for the lead just moments before rainfall ultimately ended the event. The continued relationship in 2024 between the duo will hopefully lead to success in the seasonal kickoff. This weekend’s start will be his fifth-ever start in the Craftsman Truck Series.

LaJoie enters his sixth consecutive full-time season in Cup and his fourth driving for Spire. His superspeedway abilities have resulted in eight career Top 10s including two Top 5s at Atlanta Motor Speedway’s reconfigured layout. Additionally, he earned back-to-back Top 10s in the 2020 and 2021 running of the Daytona 500. Can LaJoie capture his first-ever NASCAR victory on Friday night?

Tune in to Fox Sports 1 on Friday, February 16th for the Fresh From Florida 250 from Daytona International Speedway. Stay tuned here at LWOS Motorsports for NASCAR news, results, updates, and more.


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