Earlier this week, Harrison Burton announced that he will run the full 2019 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season for Kyle Busch Motorsports. Prior to the news being dropped, POPULAR SPEED caught up with the 18-year-old to get his thoughts entering this weekend’s Ford EcoBoost 200 at Homestead-Miami Speedway, and more.
POPULAR SPEED: What are your thoughts going into Homestead?
HARRISON BURTON: I’m really excited to go to Homestead. I know that it’s a crazy race track, everyone runs right around the top which will be really fun. I’m excited to try that out, and just ready to give it a shot. The biggest word I can think of would be excitement. You got a chance to go out there and win, and make something happen on Championship weekend – not much more you can ask for.
PS: What are your thoughts looking back on ISM Raceway
HARRISON: Well, it went good. I was happy with how we ran. We showed a lot of good speed. We won a stage; I think that’s the first stage that I’ve won. So we’re taking steps towards the first win. We had a chance; we were three-wide and I was on the bottom for the lead at the end there. I just didn’t make it work, but that’s part of it sometimes and I’m proud of our effort, but we always want more than that. I’ll go out there and try to get a win next time.
PS: How would you rate your season to date?
HARRISON: It’s gone pretty well, as far as the truck season goes. I’m fairly happy with it. I’m happy with my team’s progression and growth together. I feel almost more comfortable in the trucks than I do in the some of the lower series that I run. I’m really happy with where we are, and hopefully we can keep that group together going into next year if everything works out like I want it too. But you never know so you have to put in a last good job application and see what we got.
PS: What is one thing that you feel you and your team could do even better to run stronger?
HARRISON: I think the one thing that we’ve done well so far is prepare, so I think the biggest thing is just stick to our preparation. I think we get to the race track and maybe change our plans a little too much – or just stuff like that. It’s not a huge thing that we can do at this point. I spend more time preparing than I have ever before, and I have a great team around me to do that. I obviously have a great boss, Kyle Busch, who can help us with that. At the end of the day, it just comes down to execution when we get to the track, sticking to our plan, and doing our thing and being happy with how we did because we’ve done everything we could.
PS: You’ve kept a busy schedule racing a bit of everything. Is it tough going from one to the other?
HARRISON: It’s definitely a challenge but I think it makes me a better racecar driver because of it. I know that it’s hard to get into a rhythm from trucks to K&N to ARCA and super late models, and hop into each car or truck and be fast right off the truck; it’s a challenge. But I think having to do that, it helps me for situations where I may go to a new race track and pick it up real quick, for example this weekend at Homestead. So I think it definitely helps me, but it’s a challenge for sure.
PS: Speaking of late models, what are your thoughts going into the Snowball Derby in December?
HARRISON: I’m really excited for the Derby. It’s a race that’s on most every racer’s bucket list, I’d think, and if it’s not, it should be. It’s an awesome race track and a place that has a lot of history. You see guys like Erik Jones go there and win, and that made his whole career when you think back on it. If he hadn’t won that race, would he had made it is a question that you can ask. So definitely an important race for every racer in it, and a prestigious race. I’m just excited to go out and give it my all.
PS: There’s been lots of career highlights for you already, but what’s been the most memorable?
HARRISON: I think the biggest thing hasn’t necessarily been the wins. I think the biggest things are steps that I take as a driver to get better. That’s what this year has been about, really, trying to run all these different series and learn as a racecar driver how to do that. This year has been about me getting better and having fun while doing it. I think the little moments where you see yourself improving. You go out for your first time on a mile and a half, and improve and get faster – just stuff like that which has added up to good finishes and feeling more confident when you get to the track.
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