As Halmar Friesen Racing prepares for the 2024 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series season, the organization is making some changes behind the scenes in an effort to improve the performance of the No. 52 Toyota Tundra TRD Pro.
According to a press release from the team on Tuesday, Jimmy Villeneuve has been named the No. 52 team’s new crew chief for the upcoming season. Villeneuve served most recently as the crew chief for the No. 4 Kyle Busch Motorsports NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series team in 2023.
“I am looking forward to working with Stewart Friesen,” Villeneuve said in the press release. “He is a winning driver in Trucks, Dirt Modifieds, and pretty much all he has driven. My goal is to work with the incredible team he currently has and return HFR and Stewart back to a championship-contending team.”
Villeneuve, who hails from New Hampshire, has 20 years of tenure in the sport, and previously served at Wood Brothers Racing and Kevin Harvick, Inc. prior to working with KBM.
Additionally, the organization has added Dustin Dunn as the team’s race engineer.
Dunn, like, Villeneuve comes from the Kyle Busch Motorsports team. The race engineer has a Mechanical Engineering degree from UNC Charlotte, and prior to his work at Kyle Busch Motorsports, Dunn served as the race engineer for McAnally-Hilgemann Racing.
Tim Packman, who has been involved in motorsports for 30 years, will serve as the team’s commercial and communications director. Packman has served as a journalist, announcer, track promoter, and public relations representative over his long tenure in the sport. He will bring a wealth of knowledge to the team on the media relations side of things.
Friesen, who will once again pilot the No. 52 truck in 2024, feels his team is as prepared as ever to face the challenges of the new season.
“To say I’m already looking forward to the 2024 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series season is an understatement,” Stewart Friesen said. “Bringing on these three industry veterans will help us achieve the goals we have been striving for the past few years.
“We talked to a lot of people to fill these positions and we know the best ones were hired for HFR. I like winning and have a lot of confidence that Jimmy V and Dustin will help make that happen with the already-great team we have in place.”
Friesen, who finished sixth in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series championship standings in consecutive seasons in 2021 and 2022, ended the 2023 campaign 12th in the points.
Despite the drop off on the final points ranking, the team is proud of its effort in 2023, and is ready to hit the ground running in 2024.\
“I’m very proud of what this HFR team did in 2023 and adding Jimmy, Dustin and Tim shows the commitment we’re making to turn into a champion for years to come. I can’t wait for Daytona,” HFR and Halmar International, LLC owner Chris Larsen said.