Ty Majeski will be making his NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series debut this weekend at ISM Raceway in Phoenix. And with all the success this racer has enjoyed, it would be very difficult to argue that the 25-year-old hasn’t earned the opportunity placed before him. The Seymour, Wis. native is in the midst of a great racing season that has seen him score major victories on the ARCA Menards Series as well as in Asphalt Late Model competition.
Majeski will drive the No. 44 Chevrolet for Niece Motorsports in Phoenix as a teammate to NGOTS championship contender Ross Chastain.
Majeski and his team have been red hot throughout the 2019 campaign in Late Model competition winning races in his home state and beyond. The No. 91 crew kicked off the season by winning the crown jewel Winter Showdown at Kern County(CA) Raceway to earn a $30,000 payday.
Later in the spring the four-time ARCA Midwest Tour champion was edged out with a last lap pass by Matt Kenseth in the Slinger Nationals in Slinger, Wis. However, he was able to exact revenge by beating the 2003 NASCAR Cup Series champion along with a full field of racers in the Howie Lettow Memorial at Madison International Speedway in August. Also in that same month, the trophy from the Dixieland 250 at Wisconsin International Raceway went home with the Majeski team.
So what has been the key to success in the Late Model this year?
“The biggest thing is that we’ve just raced more,” Majeski pointed out in an interview with InsideCircleTrack.com prior to the running of the All-American 400 in Nashville. “Earlier in the year I was doing more ARCA stuff and I didn’t do a lot of Late Model races but through the latter part of the year I had a big hole in my schedule from an ARCA standpoint. We’ve been able to race more and our cars have been good so we’ve been able to find victory lane quite a bit. These cars have been phenomenal towards the latter part of the year and we’ve won a lot of big races.”
Majeski’s success has not been limited to his home state. Along with the Winter Showdown in California, he has scored three wins in the Florida Governor’s Cup at New Smyrna Speedway during the course of his career. Further, he is a two-time winner of the Rattler 250 Super Late Model race at South Alabama Speedway.
Racing in parts of the country away from his upper Midwestern home is a challenge this driver welcomes.
“It’s just different people but the racing is competitive, obviously,” Majeski stated. “There are competitive race cars everywhere you go. In a crown jewel race like this(All-American 400) the competition is higher. We’ve run the Snowball Derby a few times, and the Rattler a few times, and the Governor’s Cup a few times. We’ve done our fair share of travelling and we’ve had some success and hopefully we’ll have some success today.”
Unfortunately, mechanical issues forced an early retirement by the No. 91 in Nashville.
The key to success in virtually all forms of racing comes down to the same primary ingredient. Whether it be in a crown jewel race that features pit stops or any other type of event, those who support the driver make the difference.
“The biggest thing is just having the right people, having good help for these controlled cautions in these longer races,” Majeski explained. “When we go to those shorter races up in Wisconsin you only need two or three guys but here(Nashville) you need a pit crew to do those controlled cautions.”
Over the course of 2019, Majeski had the opportunity to compete in six ARCA Menards Series races for Chad Bryant Racing. To say that he made the most of those opportunities would be an understatement. Wins at the Charlotte Motor Speedway, Pocono Raceway and Chicagoland Speedway were achieved by the No. 22 car with three other top-5 results coming in the remaining races.
“That was really cool,” Majeski said of his efforts in ARCA. “Obviously it did a lot for my career. I had a mediocre season last year in the Xfinity Series. Even though we had a good Late Model season last year the Xfinity wasn’t what I wanted or what anybody else involved wanted so to come back and stay relevant on that stage was huge for my career.”
Majeski made twelve starts on the NASCAR Xfinity Series in 2018 with top-10 finishes at Iowa and Kansas serving as his best performances for Roush-Fenway Racing.
One opportunity perhaps inspired by those ARCA successes is that of Majeski’s entry in Friday night’s Lucas Oil 150 NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series race in the desert southwest at ISM Raceway. That news was shared on Twitter by the driver earlier in the week.
— Ty Majeski (@TyMajeski) November 4, 2019
But despite all of his success in Late Model competition, one major prize has eluded this rising star. Majeski has come close to winning the highly coveted Snowball Derby held each December at Five Flags Speedway in Pensacola, Fla. He has led 50 circuits or more of the 300-lap affair on three separate occasions to score two third-place finishes as well as a runner-up effort in 2018.
And now, he believes the elimination of live pit stops for that race will serve him well in the upcoming event.
“I feel like the hurdle we’ve been having to go around or jump over is gone now,” the driver declared. “The controlled cautions are going to play right into our hands. I felt like we had the car to win, for sure in 2015 and again last year, and we just flat out got beat on pit road. We knew it going in and it just didn’t play our way. When you come in leading the race with 15 to go and you need a money stop and everyone else is on four tires and you come out eighth it makes it tough. We only needed a few more laps and we might still have ended up in victory lane. With the controlled cautions we don’t have to worry about that so hopefully it will play into our hands this year.”
Richard Allen is a member of the National Motorsports Press Association
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