Jesse Little, No. 97 Protect The Harvest Toyota Tundra
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series
Chicagoland Speedway – American Ethanol 225
Race No. 16 of 23
Sandusky, Ohio (September 16, 2015) – Since making his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) debut four months ago at Dover (Del.) International Speedway (May), NASCAR Next driver, Jesse Little, is back in action for Friday night’s American Ethanol 225 at Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Ill. and he’s looking for redemption.
Little, who will once again be piloting the No. 97 Protect The Harvest Toyota Tundra, showed promise in his NCWTS debut at the “Monster Mile.” Qualifying within the top-10, Little was involved in an early-race accident, relegating the young driver to a 30th-place finish.
Since, the Sherrills Ford, N.C. native and the Harold Holly-guided team have worked to get Little’s Toyota Tundra ready for Friday night’s 150-lap event, including participating in a rookie test at the 1.5-mile D-shaped tri-oval last week.
Making his debut in the “Windy City,” with new partner, Protect The Harvest, Little is confident that he can apply what he learned at the two-day test, and “breeze” to a solid finish in the 7th annual event.
In addition to making his second career NCWTS start at Chicagoland Speedway on Friday night, Little is scheduled to compete in the NCWTS season finale at Homestead-Miami (Fla.) Speedway (November 20).
Sounding off – Jesse Little:
What did you learn in your truck series debut at Dover?
“My truck series debut, at Dover, earlier in May, was the single biggest learning curve I’ve experienced in my career thus far. I found out how sensitive the trucks are in dirty air – the way they handle; the way you have to drive them – changes drastically when you are in the pack. With our day ending shorter than we had hoped for, due to the wreck, we were forced to take Kentucky off the schedule, and focus on getting the truck rebuilt, and back to a winning standard. It was still my goal to run a mile-and-a-half track, so we decided Chicagoland was a perfect fit. I’ve spent the summer at the race shop working, and trying to take in all I can, and expand my knowledge about these trucks.”
“The test last week at Chicagoland Speedway was beyond helpful. It was my first time on a track that size, and to get a feeling of the trucks handling at those speeds, was incredible. The amount of time you are on the gas there really stresses the importance of a good handling truck. Cameron (Hayley) and I probably ran about 30-40 laps, side-by-side, and one in front of the other, as we were learning the tendencies of the trucks in dirty air. That part of the test was the most beneficial, I felt. Also having Matt (Crafton) there, sharing his input with me as the test went on, really allowed me to focus on where my speed was lost, and gained. I feel ten times more comfortable heading into the race this weekend, and look forward to a good showing.”
News & Notes:
  • 2015 Chassis Chatter… The No. 97 team will utilize chassis No. 33 for Friday night’s American Ethanol 225 at Chicagoland Speedway. This particular chassis was last seen at Dover International Speedway where Little qualified 9th and finished 30th.
  • Windy City Stats… Little will make his second career NCWTS start at Chicagoland Speedway on Friday night. It will be his first trip to the “Windy City,” and the second of four NCWTS races scheduled for the NASCAR Next driver this season.
  • Calling the Shots… Harold Holly will once again be calling the shots for Little in Fridaynight’s American Ethanol 225 at Chicagoland Speedway. Holly, a six-year veteran of the NCWTS, has 73 career NCWTS starts to his resume since 2004, including three races in the “Windy City.” His success includes two top-15 finishes with driver, Joey Coulter.
  • New Partner On Board… Protect The Harvest was created to defend and preserve the freedoms of American consumers, farmers, ranchers, outdoor enthusiasts, and animal owners. For more information visit:
  • Previous Race Recap… Little made his NCWTS debut in the Lucas Oil 200 at Dover International Speedway in May. The NASCAR Next driver was the seventh-fastest driver in final practice and qualified ninth for the 200-lap event. Showing promise throughout the start of the race, Little was involved in a wreck on lap 32 and relegated to a 30th-place finish.
Race Information:
Date: Friday, September 18, 2015
Time: 8:30 p.m. ET on FOX Sports 1
Track Details: 1.5-mile D-shaped Tri-oval
Distance: 150 laps/225 miles