David Gravel Set For Silver Crown Debut

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David Gravel celebrates after winning Friday's World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series National Open preliminary event at Williams Grove Speedway. (Julia Johnson Photo)
David Gravel will make his USAC Silver Crown Series debut this Sunday. (Julia Johnson Photo)

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series star David Gravel will make his USAC Silver Crown Series debut this Sunday at the Illinois State Fairgrounds for the 57th running of the Bettenhausen 100.

Gravel will compete in his first Silver Crown event this Sunday aboard the Swanson Encore Team No. 21, which has been a fixture in the Silver Crown Series over the past half-decade with Jeff Swindell as the driver.

“The team called me up one day and asked if I was interested,” Gravel said. “I told them I had to think about it and see what my plans were. They asked me to do a race earlier in the season and I couldn’t do it. I felt like toward the end of the year was a good time to give it a try. I know they have good equipment, and since I’m not committed to World of Outlaws points this year, it was a good opportunity to give it a try.”

What makes his entry for Sunday even more enticing is the fact that Gravel has yet to even sit in the seat of a Silver Crown car. His Silver Crown experience is confined to an appearance as a fan at the Hoosier Hundred at the Indiana State Fairgrounds. From his standpoint, he has an impression of the cars and the style of racing that he will carry with him when he first hits the racetrack this Sunday.

“I know all the weight and fuel behind me is going to be a big thing, and having patience in that long of a race, managing your tires and all those things,” Gravel said. “I’ll be curious to see how that all feels. Racing on a mile-long dirt track is going to be a little bit different too. I think I should be fine on the patience side and, obviously, just the feel with that big fuel load, it’s going to be interesting for sure.”

Gravel has been dabbling in other forms of motorsport this year. He made his ARCA Menards Series debut at Daytona Int’l Speedway in February, finishing 12th. He later made his NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series debut at Michigan Int’l Speedway in August, finishing 10th.

He’ll be making his second Truck Series start on Oct. 17 at Kansas Speedway, the day before he’ll race a Silver Crown car at the Illinois State Fairgrounds.