NASCAR K&N East race at Watkins Glen features "stacked field"
Will Rodgers is looking for his fourth consecutive road course victory in the K&N Pro Series this weekend but he will have plenty of competition.
Rodgers, 23, won the K&N West race at Sonoma, Calif., in June – his third in a row on a road course – and he had to beat five Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series drivers who had entered the event.
Rodgers, a member of the NASCAR Next class, is running part-time in ARCA and the K&N Pro series this season.
Just two Cup drivers – Darrell Wallace Jr. and Erik Jones – are entered in Friday’s K&N East race at Watkins Glen (N.Y.) International, both hoping to gain more road racing experience prior to Sunday’s Cup race.
Darrell Wallace Jr., Richard Petty Motorsports, Chevrolet Camaro Petty's Garage / Medallion Bank
Photo by: Gavin Baker / LAT Images
“It’ll be fun to get back in the K&N car and get a little bit of extra track time. I think I learned a lot at Sonoma earlier this season that helped me in the Cup race,” said Jones, who will drive an entry for DGR-Crosley.
“Hopefully we’ll be able to learn some more this time around in the K&N car and take something from it that will help me on Sunday.”
Also entered in the race are a pair of full-time Camping World Truck Series drivers – Noah Gragson and Brett Moffitt – and one part-time driver, former K&N Pro Series East champion Harrison Burton.
Harrison Burton, Kyle Busch Motorsports, Toyota Tundra Morton Buildings
Photo by: Russell LaBounty / NKP / LAT Images
Gragson is also competing with DGR-Crosley, while Moffitt is driving an entry owned by his Truck series team owner, Shigeaki Hattori.
K&N Pro Series East leader Tyler Ankrum has won four races this season, including the last three, and looking to extend his leader of second-place Tyler Dippel, his teammate at DGR-Crosley.
Ankrum, 17, finished ninth earlier this season at New Jersey Motorsports Park in his only previous road course start.
“We’ve been on a roll lately and we are looking to carry that momentum into the race at Watkins Glen,” Ankrum said. “Road course racing is tough, but I’ve spent a lot of time prepping and feel like I learned a lot in our last road course race at New Jersey Motorsports Park.
“Looks like there is going to be a stacked field – should be a lot of fun going for win number five.”
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Brett Moffitt earns K&N East win at Watkins Glen with last-lap pass