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Oct 30, 2013 - 07:20 PM
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Erik Jones - No. 51 WUN "Awake at the Wheel" Camry All-American 400 Preview
Posted by: newsla on Oct 30, 2013 - 07:17 PM
Erik Jones - No. 51 WUN "Awake at the Wheel" Camry All-American 400 Preview

Over 100 years of history circle the famed .596-mile track inside the gates of Fairgrounds Speedway Nashville (Tenn.). History so rich it places the annual All-American 400 high on the list of most prestigious late model races in the country. To achieve a victory from one of the races on that list is what most drivers work for, but to be searching for three in a row is something only dreamed about.


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This Saturday 17-year-old Erik Jones hopes he isn't dreaming, but "Awake at the Wheel" of his Kyle Busch Motorsport No. 51 Toyota as he ventures to the Music Capital of the World for his first attempt at the All-American 400. Dressed in new colors to support Wake Up Narcolepsy - a leading nonprofit dedicated to speeding narcolepsy diagnosis through greater awareness and funding research for a cure - the Michigan native will be attempting to rewrite history and become the first driver to collect the Snowball Derby trophy, the Winchester 400 rifle, and the All-American 400 guitar consecutively.

Only a few weeks ago, Jones became the sixth driver to capture victories in both the Snowball Derby and the Winchester 400. With a win this weekend, the talented youngster would join short track legends Butch Miller and Gary St. Amant as the only drivers to win all three events across their career.

"I'm really looking forward to Nashville," Jones said. "It is a place that is just littered with history. I have the opportunity to accomplish a pretty big sweep. It would be really special to add my name to a list of names like Butch Miller and Gary St. Amant. They are guys that I look up to and it really would be a dream come true to be a part of something like that."

"The All-American is a race that I have wanted to run for a while now, and I'm really fortunate to have the opportunity to run with KBM there," he continued. "We had a great No. 51 Camry at Winchester, and I know we will be strong this weekend at Nashville."

Jones will be behind the wheel of the same Toyota Camry that Kyle Busch piloted in last year's All-American 400. Busch had led the most laps and was at the front of the field when rain brought out a caution just shy of the halfway mark. After running several laps under caution to get to the halfway point, the rain subsided just enough to go back to green. Unfortunately, shortly after the green-flag restart and with the track under wet conditions still, the No. 51 suffered a flat tire going into Turn 4. Busch caromed hard into the outside wall, ending his night and hopes of his first All-American 400 victory.

The music for this year's event will start with a day of practice for teams on Friday, Nov. 1. Saturday, practice will pick back up for the Super Late Models from 9:30 - 11 a.m. CDT followed by qualifying at 2:30 pm and the drop of the green flag for the 29th Annual All-American 400 at 6 p.m.

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