William Byron
Hendrick Motorsports
2019 Fantasy Outlook
The Hendrick Motorsports youngster had a tough transition from winning the Xfinity Series championship in 2017 to becoming a Rookie of the Year candidate last season. Byron struggled to just four Top-10 finishes in 2018 while at the same time suffering through nine DNF's. The learning curve for the 21-year-old was steep and brutal. As the old saying goes, there's nowhere to go but up from here, and in many ways that's very true. Byron has big potential, but he's a raw talent at this point. Seven-time championship crew chief, Chad Knaus, is being brought in to head up the No. 24 team and to be mentor and teacher to Byron. It's likely a great move by the organization. We believe Byron has the most room to grow of any of the Top 20 drivers. That upside is great potential for speculation in 2019. Read Past Outlooks
Top-10 Finish at Pocono
June 3, 2019
Byron started on the pole and was able to finish ninth in Sunday's Pocono 400 at Pocono Raceway, hendrickmotorsports.com reports.
The young driver led from the drop of the green flag right up until the lap 20 competition caution. From that point on, Byron raced in-and-out of the Top 10 all afternoon in this 400-mile Pocono race. A two-tire pit stop with 14 laps to go would propel the young driver back into good track position. Byron used the new tires to race up to ninth-place by the checkered flag. It was his fourth Top-10 finish of the season, and Byron moves into 14th-place in the series standings after Pocono.
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
After winning the 2017 Xfinity Series championship, Byron makes the jump into NASCAR's top division. Byron is fresh off a four-win, 22 Top-10 finish campaign that led to the title in the Xfinity Series. The 20-year-old driver will now take over the No. 24 Chevrolet in Hendrick Motorsports' camp and pair with crew chief Darian Grubb. While there will be some lessons learned and some bumps along the way, but it's a great situation for Byron. He will be in a team that can help him win Rookie of the Year. Despite only 57-combined starts of experience between the Xfinity and Camping World Truck Series, he has 11 victories in those starts. The level of talent is obvious, and Byron's ability to adapt to greater competition is clear. He'll have every chance to win the ROTY and to exceed expectations in 2018.
One of the biggest driver defections of last season was the move of Byron from the Toyota camp in the truck series to the Chevrolet camp of JR Motorsports in the Xfinity Series. Byron signed a deal to make the move up in NASCAR and further his development. The young driver grabbed attention last season in the truck series with a stunning seven-win campaign and Rookie of the Year honors in that division. Before that Byron claimed the championship with a four-win campaign in the K&N Pro Series East in 2015. His trajectory through the world of stock car racing has been rocket-like. Now Byron will hope to take the next steps with this strong JR Motorsports team. He should be the top contender to win Rookie of the Year in 2017, and possibly surprise in the final driver standings.
The 2015 K&N Pro Series East champion gets a big promotion in 2016. Byron will take over the No. 4 Toyota Tundra that Erik Jones raced much of last season. The 18-year-old talent got a one-race audition with KBM last year and that was enough to secure him a ride for the upcoming season. It looks as though Byron will bring his own sponsorship to the ride in the way of Liberty University, and he'll be paired with crew chief Rudy Fugle. It's going to be an exciting opportunity for this young driver to flourish right away in his first full season of truck series racing. Byron won four races and led 740 laps last season in his championship campaign in the K&N Pro Series East, so there's little doubt about his driving ability.
More Fantasy News
Wins Pocono Pole
June 1, 2019
Byron won the pole for the Pocono 400 at Pocono Raceway Saturday afternoon. He turned a fast lap of 173.494 mph
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Wins Coca-Cola 600 Pole
May 23, 2019
Byron won the pole for the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway Thursday afternoon. He turned a fast lap of 183.424 mph.
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Wins Stage 1 Monster Energy Open
May 18, 2019
Byron won stage 1 of the Monster Energy Open Saturday night at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
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Sixth-Place in O'Reilly Auto Parts 500
April 1, 2019
Sunday at Texas Motor Speedway, Jimmie Johnson led the way for Hendrick Motorsports, finishing fifth. Just behind him was Byron, who joined his teammate inside the Top 10 with a sixth-place result. It matched his career-best NASCAR Cup Series finish, hendrickmotorsports.com reports.
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Fails Inspection
March 24, 2019
The No. 24 Chevrolet of driver Byron failed pre-race inspection Sunday morning at Martinsville Speedway, dropping the car to the bottom of the starting lineup for Sunday's STP 500, NASCAR.com reports
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