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K&N Pro East Stat Advance: New Smyrna

Analyzing the Jet Tools 150 at New Smyrna Speedway
Travis Barrett, Special to NASCARHomeTracks.com
February 15, 2017 - 12:33pm

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — The 2017 NASCAR K&N Pro Series East begins with the Jet Tools 150 at New Smyrna Speedway in New Smyrna Beach, Florida, on Sunday, February 19. Below is a look at the Jet Tools 150 and some of the selected participants.

Jet Tools 150 Race Setup: 
• For the fourth consecutive season, New Smyrna Speedway hosts the opening race of the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East season.
• The three drivers that finished in the top three positions in this race last year are the only drivers who finished in the top 10 entered this year — Todd Gilliland (won), Spencer Davis (second) and Ronnie Bassett Jr. (third).

At New Smyrna Speedway:
History:
• Opened its doors in 1964 and was repaved in January 2007.
• The .480-mile banked oval has 600-foot straightaways and 720-foot turns with 23 degrees of banking.
• Held its first NASCAR K&N Pro Series East race on Feb. 16, 2014, a race won by Daniel Suarez.
• This is the series’ 15th race in the state of Florida – eight of those came between 1988 and 1997 at Daytona International Speedway as combination races with the NASCAR XFINITY Series.

Notebook:
• New Smyrna has played host to three previous NASCAR K&N Pro Series East races.
• There have been three different winners in the three series races at New Smyrna — Daniel Suarez, Austin Hill and Todd Gilliland.
• There have been three different pole winners at New Smyrna — Cameron Hayley, Austin Hill and Todd Gilliland. Hill and Gilliland each won races from the pole.
• Ronnie Bassett Jr. is the only driver entered in the Jet Tools 150 to have competed in all three previous K&N East races at New Smyrna.
• Todd Gilliland is the youngest race winner at 15 years, 9 months and 29 days in 2016.
• Daniel Suarez is the oldest race winner at 22 years, 1 month, 9 days in 2014.
• Since the inaugural race at New Smyrna, the eventual series champion has scored a top 10 in all three of the races, Ben Rhodes finished fourth in 2014, William Byron finished seventh in 2015 and Justin Haley finished fifth last season.

New Smyrna Data:
Race: #1 of 14 overall
Race Date: Sunday, February 19, 7:30 p.m. ET
Track Layout: .480-mile banked oval
Banking/Corners: 23 degrees
Race Length: 150 laps (72 miles)

Qualifying/Race Data:
2016 Winner: Todd Gilliland
2016 Pole Sitter: Todd Gilliland
1-lap Qualifying Record: Todd Gilliland, 18.318 seconds (94.333 mph), February 2016
150-mile Race Record: Todd Gilliland (68.175 mph), February 2016

Category Leaders at New Smyrna:
Wins
Todd Gilliland … 1
Austin Hill … 1
Daniel Suarez … 1

Poles
Todd Gilliland … 1
Cameron Hayley. … 1
Austin Hill … 1

Selected Driver Highlights:
Hunter Baize (No. 13 EcoWater Systems Naples/NnT Sports Cards Chevrolet)
Finished fourth in the final series standings as a rookie last season with one top five and 10 top 10s in 14 starts.
Posted a career-best finish of fifth at Iowa in July.
Qualified 14th at New Smyrna a year ago in his series debut.
Completed more than 96% of all laps contested last season.

Ronnie Bassett Jr. (No. 04 Bassett Gutters & More Chevrolet)
Finished 11th in the final series standings last season after making only nine starts with four top fives and five top 10s.
Has twice finished second in his career, at Greenville-Pickens Speedway in 2014 and at Iowa Speedway in 2015.
Finished third at New Smyrna last season and is the only driver entered to have competed in all three of the series’ previous races at the track.

Harrison Burton (No. 12 DEX Imaging Toyota)
Finished seventh in the final series standings a year ago with one top five and five top 10s in 14 starts.
Won his first and only career pole at Bristol in April and led 13 laps there.
Qualified ninth and finished 13th at New Smyrna a year ago in his series debut.
Is the son of former Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series driver Jeff Burton.

Collin Cabre (No. 2 UTI/NTI Toyota)
Finished a career-best sixth in the final series standings in 2016 with four top fives and six top 10s in 14 starts.
Won the season finale at Dover in 2015, site of his only career win.
Qualified 10th at New Smyrna a year ago and finished 11th, career marks for both at the track.

Travis Cope (No. 31 Whelen Engineering/Best Line Chevrolet)
Making his NASCAR K&N Pro Series East debut at New Smyrna.
Has multiple career NASCAR Whelen All-American Series wins in a Super Late Model at New Smyrna, having won the Governor’s Cup there in 2013 and both the Orange Blossom 100 and Red Eye 100 at the track the following season.

Spencer Davis (No. 20 Davis Motorsports Toyota)
Finished eighth in the final series standings a year ago with one win, five top fives and seven top 10s in 13 starts.
Won the series’ inaugural race at Dominion Raceway in May, site of his only career win.
Qualified second and finished second in at New Smyrna last year.
Plans on running a partial schedule for car owner and former series competitor Ben Kennedy in 2017.

Tyler Dippel (No. 38 East West Marine/TyCar Chevrolet)
• Finished third in the final series standings last season with one win, one top five and eight top 10s in 14 races.
Won at Mobile in March in only his second career series start. 
Finished eighth after qualifying fifth in his only career start at New Smyrna.
Was the highest-finishing rookie in the 2016 K&N Pro Series East standings.

Todd Gilliland (No. 16 NAPA Auto Parts Toyota)
Is the reigning NASCAR K&N Pro Series West champion, having scored six wins, 11 top fives and 13 top 10s in 14 races in 2016.
Won his K&N East debut at New Smyrna a year ago from the pole, leading a race-high 91 laps.
Became the youngest champion in NASCAR touring series history at 16 years, five months, and joined his grandfather Butch Gilliland as a K&N West champion (1997).
Currently holds the qualifying record at New Smyrna at 94.333 mph (18.318 seconds).
Plans to run both the full K&N East and K&N West schedules in 2017.

Derek Kraus (No. 99 Carlyle Tools Toyota)
• Making his K&N Pro Series debut at New Smyrna.
Will run full-time in the K&N Pro Series West for car owner Bill McAnally.

Zane Smith (No. 43 Diamondback Towing Toyota)
• Making his K&N Pro Series debut at New Smyrna.
Won the 2015 World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing championship at New Smyrna in the Super Late Model division.
Won a NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Super Late Model feature at the track during his 2015 championship run.

Up To Speed:
• The 2017 season is the 31st for the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East.
• The 2017 schedule features 14 races at 13 different tracks across the United States.
Third-generation driver Todd Gilliland earned his first NASCAR K&N Pro Series East victory in his series debut at New Smyrna (Fla.) Speedway.
This marks the fourth consecutive year that the K&N Pro Series East season begins at New Smyrna Speedway as part of the World Series of Asphalt Stock Car Racing.