Stewart Friesen has 14 top fives and 330 laps led over his past 47 Gander Outdoors NASCAR Truck Series races, but a win has eluded the 36-year-old.
Though the quest to find Victory Lane has been frustrating, win No. 1 Friday evening in the JEGS 200 at Dover International Speedway would be well worth the wait for Friesen, who is piloting a special autism awareness paint scheme.
Friesen’s 3-year-old son, Parker, was diagnosed with autism at 1-and-a-half years old and immediately entered Applied Behavior Analysis therapy through Crossroads Center for Children.
So, Friesen and his wife, Jessica, figured to partner with Crossroads Center for Children this weekend at the Monster Mile since April was autism awareness month. The Friesens also raised $70,000 in the process and continue to spread awareness at https://www.hfrraceforautism.com/ .
“It’s a really special deal to honor them and raise some money for them today,” Friesen said. “They’re great therapists. It’s been excellent on what they’ve done for not only Parker but other kids in our community.”
After a three-week layoff, Friesen enters Friday evening as the series points leader with finishes of 10th, 18th, fourth, fifth, and second to show for. Over the break Friesen picked up a pair of big block modified wins on dirt and recently ran second at Delaware International Speedway before hitting the wall and knocking him out of contention.
Unlike his competitors, Friesen feels sharp heading into Friday evening.
“We’ve kept it rolling with the No. 44 [big block dirt modified] team,” Friesen said. “My buddies over there have been awesome. It’s been a lot of fun. Now we’re back to it for another stretch of truck racing.”
“Obviously a win would be unbelievable no matter what,” added Friesen, who will start fourth. “[Halmar] is kind of giving us a truck to do this. They’ve been behind it 100 percent. Having Halmar on board, and a lot of great friends and family and sponsors and everybody else that’s supported us for this whole cause, it would be super, super special to win with everybody behind us.”