Race Weekend Central

Stewart Friesen to Attempt Truck Debut at Eldora

Area Auto Racing News reported on Tuesday that Stewart Friesen, formerly of Ontario, but now living in Sprakers, N.Y., will attempt to make his Camping World Truck Series debut at Eldora Speedway on July 20 in the Aspen Dental 150.

Halmar Racing, Friesen’s regular team in the Super DIRTcar Series and on a regular basis at Albany-Saratoga Speedway, has purchased a chassis and acquired an engine from Richard Childress Racing for use in the effort.

Sponsorship will likely be provided by Halmar International, a construction company that focuses on mass transit, road construction and industrial construction.

In addition to the Camping World Truck Series race, Friesen will join Lebanon Valley Speedway regular JR Heffner in running double-duty at Eldora.  The Super DIRTcar Series serves as the primary support series and will run a points race the night before the Aspen Dental 150.

Team owner Chris Larsen told Area Auto Racing News that Friesen’s chassis for the race “…has one race on it.”  As a result, it is a relatively new and fresh chassis, as opposed to the chassis Heffner will use.  That particular chassis has attempted all three previous truck races at Eldora and previously raced for the now-defunct MRD Motorsports.

Heading up the effort for Friesen will be a familiar face in NASCAR circles.  Harold Holly, a former champion crew chief in the XFINITY Series with Jeff Green, will serve as Friesen’s crew chief.  Friesen also noted the presence of Gary Balough behind the scenes.  Balough, who briefly drove very early in the history of the Camping World Truck Series, is a controversial figure in the history of both Big Block Modified racing and NASCAR.  In Modified circles, he’s best known for racing the “Batmobile,” a supposed Lincoln Continental that dominated Super Dirt Week at the New York State Fairgrounds in 1980.

The controversy over that car is explained here:

As of right now, the plan is only to attempt Eldora.  However, should things go well, Friesen and Halmar Racing could find themselves attempting additional races.  No information was released regarding which number that Friesen will run.  Friesen normally races No. 44, but that is the number that Heffner will race in his partnership with Martins Motorsports.

About the author

Phil Allaway has three primary roles at Frontstretch. He's the manager of the site's FREE e-mail newsletter that publishes Monday-Friday and occasionally on weekends. He keeps TV broadcasters honest with weekly editions of Couch Potato Tuesday and serves as the site's Sports Car racing editor.

Outside of Frontstretch, Phil is the press officer for Lebanon Valley Speedway in West Lebanon, N.Y. He covers all the action on the high-banked dirt track from regular DIRTcar Modified racing to occasional visits from touring series such as the Super DIRTcar Series.

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Should be an interesting evening if Smoke is at the track. Friesen’s wife is Jessica Zemken. I wonder if Smoke remembers her.

The better race will be the Big Block Mods. They’re real race cars and the drivers are better.

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