Coming back to Las Vegas Motor Speedway this week has been a nostalgic trip for defending champion Erik Jones.
The 19-year-old from Byron, Mich., picked up his first victory at a superspeedway last October in Las Vegas and feels good about bringing his Kyle Busch Motorsports No. 4 Game Stop Toyota back to the 1.5-mile track for the Rhino Linings 350.
"I'm excited to be back here," said Jones, the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series points leader. "Any time you come back to a track you've won at gives you a morale boost in your team in knowing that you can do it and have won there. It's exciting for any team to have that feeling and momentum going into the race."
Jones said last year's victory was big for his team.
"It was a big confidence boost getting a mile-and-a-half win," said Jones, who will be racing full-time in the NASCAR Xfinity Series for Joe Gibbs Racing in 2016. "It was a big boost for us in the owner's championship (points) - which is what we were really running for last year - and it was just a cool win for us. It was the first KBM win in Vegas, so that was pretty cool for Kyle."
Jones is looking to join Mike Skinner (2006, 2008) and Jack Sprague (1996, 1998) as the only drivers to win more than one NCWTS race at LVMS.
"This is a race we had marked on the calendar last year, and I'm just happy to be back out here at a track where we've had success," said Jones, who has two NCWTS victories this season. "We had a strong truck last year, and if we can go back to back, that would be great for us and everyone involved."
The 219-mile race begins at 7 p.m. and will be preceded by a 2 p.m. driver autograph session and immediately followed by a fireworks show. The Rhino Linings 350 is the sixth-to-last stop on the 2015 schedule and has been a fixture at LVMS since Jack Sprague won in 1996.
Fans can go to LVMS.com or call 1-800-644-4444 to order Rhino Linings 350 tickets.
Las Vegas Motor Speedway is a wholly owned subsidiary of Speedway Motorsports, a leading marketer and promoter of motorsports entertainment in the United States, and has been named SMI Speedway of the Year each of the last three years. For more information, visit SpeedwayMotorsports.com.
Rhino Linings 350 race-day schedule
9 a.m. Ticket Gate C and Neon Garage open
9 - 11:30 a.m. NCWTS final practice
12:15 - 4 p.m. Minors permitted in garage area
2 - 2:45 p.m. Drivers' autograph session (Neon Garage)
4 p.m. Ticket Gates A, B, D, E, Blackjack Club, VIP Suites open
4:05 p.m. NCWTS qualifying
6:30 p.m. NCWTS driver introductions
7 p.m. NCWTS Rhino Linings 350 (146 laps, 219 miles)
*Fireworks immediately after the race
9:30 p.m. Neon Garage closes
Schedule is subject to change.