NASCAR Top-30 Preview:
No. 30 David Gilliland
Photo by .Mearn / Flickr.com
David Gilliland practices for the Daytona 500, February 16, 2013. Gilliland captured two top-10 finishes last season.
January 8, 2014
Disclaimer: All opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.
Patience may pay off for David Gilliland in 2014.
Gilliland returns to Front Row Motorsports for a fifth season, coming off a 26th place finish in points, a career best.
The Riverside, California native posted two top-10 finishes for Front Row Motorsports, including a runner up showing to teammate David Ragan at Talladega in May.
Although Gilliland has not had a fair shot at a top-tier ride in the Cup Series, Gilliland’s tenure at FRM shows slow, but steady progress each season.
In 2013, Gilliland posted five top-20 finishes total, one more than the 2012 season. But with the advent of the Generation 6 racecar, the new car seemed to level out the playing field for smaller teams, especially at the beginning of the season.
Despite the results column not doing justice, Gilliland ran inside the top-20 solidly at Las Vegas and Bristol. FRM as a whole also seemed to run better in 2013 at all types of racetracks.
In 2014, expect Gilliland and teammate David Ragan to work together and challenge powerhouse organizations for victories at superspeedway races. And as seen in the past, Gilliland has run well at the Sonoma road course, including a career best 2nd in 2008.
Each season, Front Row Motorsports seems to make gains in the right direction as far as on-track performance, but work is cut out for Gilliland and company, as intermediate track performance has lacked since the team started running full-time in 2009.
Stats provided by racing-reference.info