General Tire is the proud Official Racing Tire and Exclusive Tire Supplier of the NASCAR K&N Pro Series, NASCAR Pinty’s Series, NASCAR Whelen Euro Series, and NASCAR PEAK Mexico Series, as well as the longtime supplier of tires for the ARCA Menards Series. Throughout the 2019 racing season, we’ll check in on the stock car series that feature General Tire worldwide, with race notes, previews, and driver profiles:
Derek Kraus swept the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West doubleheader from Tucson Speedway, earning both wins in the Port of Tucson Twin 100s on Saturday to take over the championship lead from Bill McAnally Racing teammate Hailie Deegan. Kraus passed polesitter Tanner Gray in the first race in Turn 1 to lead all 100 laps, and regained the point in the second half of the second race to earn the pair of checkered flags. Gray would finish second in both races.
The NASCAR Whelen Euro Series also returned to action in Italy with a pair of races from the Autodromo di Franciacorta. Former series champion Alon Day swept the weekend in Elite 1 for CAAL Racing, with Jacques Villeneuve earning third place on Saturday for his first podium in the series. In Elite 2, Lasse Sorensen and Florian Venturi took the two victories on offer.
The ARCA Menards Series returns to action at Toledo Speedway this weekend, with one of the sport’s biggest young names ready to make her series debut. Hailie Deegan will trade her NASCAR K&N Pro Series car for an ARCA ride this weekend, joining Venturini Motorsports for the Sioux Chief PowerPEX 200. Travis Braden will look to defend his points lead from Michael Self, who was wrecked out of the most recent round at Fairgrounds Speedway in Nashville.
In addition, the NASCAR Pinty’s Series will finally kick off its 2019 season from Canadian Tire Motorsport Park. 2018 event winners LP Dumoulin and Alex Tagliani will look to return to the winner’s circle, while Riley Herbst, Alex Labbe, and DJ Kennington are among the other familiar faces on the entry list. The NASCAR Peak Mexico Series also holds its third round of the season at Triovalo Bernardo Obregon, just outside of Guadalajara.
Driver Profile: Derek Kraus
A perennial title contender in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West, Derek Kraus has big plans for the 2019 season. After sweeping the Port of Tucson Twin 100s, the Bill McAnally Racing driver leads the point standings in both K&N Pro Series divisions, having won four of the eight races he’s started this season and never finishing worse than sixth. Combine that with his second career NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series top 10 at Dover International Speedway earlier this month, and the 17-year-old Wisconsinite is one of the sport’s most exciting driver prospects.
Kraus’ early success in go-karts and bandoleros moved him into Midwest trucks and super late models as a teenager, and it wasn’t long before he earned a spot at BMR through young driver tryouts. He won the KNPSW Rookie of the Year award in 2017 after finishing third in points and winning the season finale at Kern County Raceway. Last year, Kraus not only won five races between KNPSW and KNPSE, he also made his Truck debut at ISM Raceway in the fall and finished eighth.