After a breakout season in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series, Christian Eckes has committed to returning for a second season with McAnally-Hilgemann Racing, where he’ll continue as the driver of the No. 19 Chevrolet Silverado.
The 22-year-old driver has been among the top drivers in the NASCAR Truck Series this season, collecting a series-high three victories – at Atlanta, Darlington, and Kansas – which also marked the first three wins for team owner Bill McAnally.
Eckes is currently in the midst of a run at the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series championship, where he enters the cut-off race Saturday at Homestead-Miami Speedway just nine points above the cutline.
“I’m very excited to return to the #19 Silverado next season with Charles (Denike) and our entire NAPA Auto Care team,” Eckes said. “Our current main priority is trying to cap 2023 off with a championship, but having the opportunity to build upon our successes and continue growing MHR is something I’m really looking forward to in 2024. It’s been a pleasure to work with the NAPA store owners, NAPA shop owners, suppliers, and everyone in the NAPA Network. I’m thrilled to continue that relationship and ready for another great year with all our amazing partners.”
Charles Denike will continue in his position as the crew chief of the No. 19 Chevrolet Silverado in 2024, as he and Eckes look to continue a strong relationship that brought the organization nine top-five and 12 top-10 finishes in 21 races this season.
“Christian coming in has been a major boost to elevate our race team to another level,” said team owner Bill McAnally. “To have the success we’ve had this season is even sweeter when you can share it with long-time partners like NAPA and all the owners, customers, and suppliers nationwide. We’re excited and looking forward to keeping the No. 19 group together next season, but we want to finish the job this season in Phoenix for everyone in the NAPA Network.”
The 2024 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series season will mark the 34th consecutive year of the partnership between Bill McAnally. NAPA Auto Care and NAPA Auto Parts. The relationship dates back to McAnally’s driving days at All-American Speedway and has included 11 championships in the ARCA Menards Series West.
Eckes will be partnered up with Daniel Dye for the 2024 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series campaign after it was announced earlier in the year that the Deland, Florida native would pilot the No. 43 Chevrolet for McAnally-Hilgemann Racing.
Jake Garcia, the full-time driver of the team’s second entry, announced earlier this week that he would depart the organization at the end of the season, in order to pursue different opportunities.