Phoenix is like home for Gilliland

He spent his early career racing and winning at PIR

Phoenix is like home for Gilliland

STATESVILLE, N.C. (November 5, 2013) - Phoenix International Raceway may be 2,000 miles from his house in North Carolina, but the racetrack in the desert feels like home to David Gilliland. The driver of the No. 38 Long John Silver's Ford is a west coast native and spent several years racing the one-mile oval in Avondale, Ariz., earlier in his racing career.

David Gilliland, Ford
David Gilliland, Ford

Photo by: Action Sports Photography

Those days included a trip to the track's Victory Lane back in his K&N Pro Series West racing career in a race he started from the pole (2005). Even though Gilliland is now an eight-year Sprint Cup Series veteran and North Carolina resident, traveling back to Phoenix still feels like a homecoming of sorts.

The No. 38 team aims to finish what they started in the March Sprint Cup race at the track, where Gilliland was running just outside the top 20 when he blew a tire and hit the wall, ending his day early.

Gilliland has 14 starts at Phoenix in his Cup career with a top finish of 15th (2008).

Comments from Long John Silver's team driver David Gilliland heading to Phoenix:

"The new configuration at Phoenix is different for sure. I grew up racing out there, so I raced a lot of times on the old-style configuration. Phoenix is always a special track for us to go to. We won a race from the pole there back when I was running the West Series. So I've got a lot of good memories at that track. And we always have a lot of friends and family out there who come out and show their support.

"Earlier in the year when we went out there, we were running really well and then we had a tire issue. We're looking forward to going back there and hopefully finishing what we started at the beginning of the year. We've certainly learned a ton and evolved the cars a lot since then, so I know we can go back even better.

"The new configuration isn't bad. The old Phoenix had more character, but the new Phoenix isn't bad. As you get used to it and run on it, you start to learn its characteristics and traits and get them to work for you. It's what everybody has to do. You've got 43 teams that are learning it and adapting to it."

Front Row Motorsports

shares
comments
Newman honors Veteran’s Day at PIR

Previous article

Newman honors Veteran’s Day at PIR

Next article

Ragan poised to bounce back at Phoenix

Ragan poised to bounce back at Phoenix
Load comments
Why NASCAR's most resilient driver has landed on his feet at 23XI Prime

Why NASCAR's most resilient driver has landed on his feet at 23XI

In a career that has had many ups and downs, Kurt Busch has been written off many times before. But facing career uncertainty after the sale of Chip Ganassi's NASCAR team, the 2004 Cup champion has found a new berth at Denny Hamlin and Michael Jordan's 23XI organization - which underlines his enduring value

NASCAR Cup
Aug 31, 2021
From the archive: Dale Earnhardt’s final Autosport interview Prime

From the archive: Dale Earnhardt’s final Autosport interview

The death of Dale Earnhardt in the 2001 Daytona 500 shocked NASCAR to the core. At the Daytona 24 Hours, two weeks before his fatal accident, ‘The Intimidator’ shared his expectations of challenging for an eighth Cup title with JONATHAN INGRAM, in an article first published in the 15 February 2001 issue of Autosport magazine. Little did we know then what tragedy would unfold…

NASCAR Cup
Feb 18, 2021
The lasting NASCAR legacy after Dale Earnhardt’s death Prime

The lasting NASCAR legacy after Dale Earnhardt’s death

On February 18, 2001, seven-time NASCAR Cup champion Dale Earnhardt – the fearless ‘Intimidator’ – was in his element at Daytona International Speedway. While his own DEI team’s cars ran 1-2 towards the finish line, his famed #3 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet Monte Carlo was playing rear gunner to block any late runs from the chasing pack. As the cars tore through Turns 3 and 4 on that fateful final lap, Earnhardt maintained the strongarm tactics that encapsulated his persona… but his actions in those moments sadly proved to be his last.

NASCAR Cup
Feb 18, 2021
Inspired by Pitbull, the “revolution” sweeping through NASCAR Prime

Inspired by Pitbull, the “revolution” sweeping through NASCAR

The NASCAR Cup Series is changing. Whether it be the gradual morphing out the seasoned drivers of yesterday as the next generation step up, a radical calendar shake-up featuring more road courses than ever before and the prospect of an all-new car on the horizon, stock car racing’s highest level is nearing the end of a huge facelift.

NASCAR Cup
Feb 16, 2021
The NASCAR storylines to watch out for in 2021 Prime

The NASCAR storylines to watch out for in 2021

This weekend's Daytona 500 kickstarts a NASCAR Cup season that promises plenty of intrigue courtesy of new owners and a refreshed calendar. Here's what you need to know ahead of the new season…

NASCAR Cup
Feb 13, 2021
Why Kyle Larson can't blow his big shot at redemption Prime

Why Kyle Larson can't blow his big shot at redemption

From a disgraced NASCAR exile, Kyle Larson has been given a chance of redemption by the powerhouse Hendrick Motorsports squad. Effectively replacing seven-time champion Jimmie Johnson is no easy billing, but Larson has every intention of repaying the team's faith...

NASCAR Cup
Feb 11, 2021
Why Roger Penske is an American motorsport icon Prime

Why Roger Penske is an American motorsport icon

In this exclusive one-on-one interview, Roger Penske reveals the inner drive that has made him not only a hugely successful team owner and businessman but also the owner of Indianapolis Motor Speedway and IndyCar. He spoke to David Malsher-Lopez.

IndyCar
Dec 28, 2020
Why NASCAR's latest second-generation champion is just getting started Prime

Why NASCAR's latest second-generation champion is just getting started

Chase Elliott's late charge to the 2020 NASCAR Cup title defied predictions that it would be a Kevin Harvick versus Denny Hamlin showdown. While the two veterans are showing no signs of slowing down, Elliott's triumph was a window into NASCAR's future…

NASCAR Cup
Nov 18, 2020