Martinsville Speedway is a home race for Brandon Brown in a sense and he’s hoping for a strong showing in Saturday’s Alpha Energy Solutions 250.
The Woodbridge, Virginia native will be making his third Martinsville appearance and 22nd NASCAR Camping World Truck Series start on Saturday. He had a fast truck in Friday’s lone practice session, posting a lap of 20.721 seconds on scuff tires.
“I feel really good about this weekend,” Brown told Popular Speed. “We brought the backup truck that I always call Wise. It’s got a lot of experience. It’s a little older truck but it still holds its own. That was shown yesterday in practice. The first run out of the gate, the first 28 cars, we were sitting seventh for quite some time. Fighting there in the top-10. Our timesheet didn’t show what the truck had because we never mocked up for a sticker run like a lot of the other drivers did so, I think we ended up 24th overall on the timesheet.
“We were consistently running where a lot of people were setting their fast laps and I think that’s going to be crucial today, especially with the really long final segment, trying to squeeze out everything you can, staying out as late as you can fuel wise and tire wise to try to get a chance to take home some checkers.”
Along with a quick truck, Brown has a lot of support after a social media campaign kicked off during the week. The Twitter handles for 680 fans are represented on the bed of his No. 44 Brandonbilt Motorsports truck.
“We did a huge push this week on social media,” Brown explained. “Honestly, we started the tweets and all our social media really because we were doing a fundraiser for Relay for Life. We were trying to build a little bit of a following on the page so we decided that it was time to give back to the fans and really show some love since they’re showing love for us. So, we decided that we would draw a lucky handful of names out of people who retweeted and favorited and followed our page and a lucky 680 names were picked and are laid across the bed of the truck this weekend.
“It really blew up huge. We had a couple big names who supported it. Dale Earnhardt, Jr. retweeted it, Michael Waltrip, Bristol Motor Speedway and Atlanta Motor Speedway. A couple big Twitter accounts helped on that push. I’d like to thank them. Other than that, it was great to get a lot of great feedback and responses on that.”
Brown has run periodically in the Truck Series for the past three seasons, with a career best finish to-date of fourth last February at Daytona. He is also running some NASCAR XFINITY Series events, with a best finish of 23rd in four starts.
“We’re definitely looking to start running XFINITY now,” Brown said. “The truck efforts have been really good and it’s been really fun but the goal is to eventually move out so we’re just starting out part-time with one car. We’re partnered up with King Autosport and Mario Gosselin this year to try and make some starts, get some seat time, race against the drivers, feel it out, feel out the series and what it would take. I think we’ve been really successful with that so far with Atlanta this season but we’re getting ready and preparing for Richmond International Raceway which is another home Virginia track for us.
The XFINITY effort won’t take Brown away from trucks, though, with plans for more races.
“I know our next actual race we’re going to run is Charlotte in the trucks,” Brown remarked. “We do have a test session coming up at Charlotte which I’m excited about because it will be our first time getting to go out and just test, feel things out and study. Really looking forward to that and building into a program that could possibly turn into full time.”
Beyond NASCAR, Brown hopes to return to Martinsville for the ValleyStar Credit Union 300, an event he has attempted four times previously. As of now, he has not found an open seat, despite past success at Old Dominion Speedway and Southern National Motorsports Park, but is still hoping to compete in the $25,000-to-win race.
“I was really trying to,” Brown commented. “I was reaching out to a lot of people to see if anybody had an open seat. It’s hard, everyone wants to be out here because now it’s going to be run under the lights which is huge, it’s historic for this track, so I think everybody’s that’s anybody is going to be here. I’m still holding out hope that there’s a possibility that we can get into it. I guess we’ll really see who has an open seat.”
The Alpha Energy Solutions at Martinsville Speedway will go green at 3pm EST and can be seen live on Fox and Fox Sports Go.
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