Driver Spotlight: Matt Crafton

Matt Crafton

Crafton captured his third career win this past weekend at Kansas Speedway. (Photo: Getty Images)

Get to know NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver Matt Crafton in this week’s edition of MotorRacingNetwork.com’s "Driver Spotlight."

You spend time during the week racing a kart at Mooresville Motorplex. Is karting how you got your start in racing?

Crafton: I raced karts from when I was eight years old until I was 15. That was the last time I ever sat in a go-kart. I just got back into them this year and I'm having a blast. Each and every week, I keep getting a little bit faster with it and just learning about the kart. Back in the day, you'd pretty much set the air pressure, go out there and drive. But these karts have come a long way.

When was it that you knew you wanted to be a racecar driver?

Crafton: That's all I ever wanted to do. That's funny you say that because my mom still has my first-grade autobiography I did about what you wanted to do when you grow up. Mine was that I wanted to be a racecar driver. Most kids back then ... it was fireman, policeman. I still have mine that says that (racecar driver).

Who were your racing idols growing up?

Crafton: My dad. Davey Allison, as well. I always looked at Davey Allison ... he drove my dad's Late Model back in the day a few different times. I learned so much from him as in how to take care of the fans because there are so many of these drivers nowadays that don't treat fans the way they should be. He taught me a lot of other things, but Davey always took care of the fans. I can still remember to this day how he always treated me and it stuck with me.

You've made a record 298 consecutive starts in the Truck Series - a majority coming with ThorSport Racing. The shop - in Sandusky, Ohio - looks impressive. Tell me a little about it.

Crafton: Our race shop is phenomenal. Duke and Rhonda Thorson have built one awesome facility. One of the coolest things about the shop is 90 percent of that building was built with Menards material. From the floors to the windows, every part. I can't thank Duke and Rhonda enough, and Menards, for giving me the opportunity to do this as long as I have.

How often do you get to the race shop?

Crafton: I'm up there at least once a month throughout the slower part of the season. But during the summer months when we race in the Midwest, I'm up there for about a month-and-a-half straight. I have the motorhome and actually have a full hook-up area with water, dump and everything. I lived in the motorhome for a month right across the street from the shop. I went home for a week and then went back for another two weeks last year, and have done it pretty much every year.

Sandusky has some major attractions like Cedar Point amusement park and islands to visit. Do you get to enjoy both when you're up there?

Crafton: Oh yeah. I definitely go to Cedar Point. Also, going to the islands. We would always get a bunch of crew guys, hang out on the islands and have a good time.

What's your favorite roller coaster at Cedar Point?

Crafton: Top Thrill Dragster is awesome. Also, Maverick is right up there as well. We usually get a few of the crew guys and go out and do that, as well.

How often do you get to drive your sand rail in California? Plus, where is your favorite place to take it?

Crafton: Thanksgiving is the first time I go out there. I go out there then, for New Year's and then right after Daytona. When Cup races at Phoenix, I always go out there for a week and play in the sand. Glamis dunes is pretty much the best, hands down.

What was your first street car?

Crafton: I had a Chevrolet S-10 pickup. Then, the truck I always wanted was a truck my dad bought brand-new - a 1973 Ford F-150. I always wanted one with that body style. I bought one ... I think it was when I was a senior in high school. It was back behind an old shop, I got it, restored it and I still have it.

What are the top songs on your iPod?

Crafton: I'm not really a song guy. To be totally honest, when I'm driving down the road I don't ever turn the radio on. I bet I'll listen to 10 minutes of music throughout the week, if that, just because the best time to think is when you're in your car. I'm not a music guy and I don't know why. People always talk about music this and music that, and who this singer is. I don’t know a thing about it.

Race Center

Daytona International Speedway

@ Daytona International Speedway
Friday, February 20, 2015
Radio Start:
MRN
TV Start:
FOX Sports 1

Photos

  • Nationwide and Truck Banquet
  • Nationwide and Truck Banquet
  • Nationwide and Truck Banquet
  • Nationwide and Truck Banquet
  • Nationwide and Truck Banquet
  • Nationwide and Truck Banquet
  • Nationwide and Truck Banquet
  • Nationwide and Truck Banquet
  • Nationwide and Truck Banquet
  • Nationwide and Truck Banquet
  • Ford EcoBoost 200
  • Ford EcoBoost 200
  • Ford EcoBoost 200
  • Ford EcoBoost 200
  • Ford EcoBoost 200
  • Ford EcoBoost 200
  • Ford EcoBoost 200
  • Ford EcoBoost 200
  • Ford EcoBoost 200
  • Ford EcoBoost 200
  • Ford EcoBoost 200
  • Ford EcoBoost 200
  • Ford EcoBoost 200
  • Ford EcoBoost 200
  • Ford EcoBoost 200
  • Ford EcoBoost 200
  • Lucas Oil 150
  • Lucas Oil 150
  • Lucas Oil 150
  • Lucas Oil 150
  • Lucas Oil 150
  • Lucas Oil 150
  • Lucas Oil 150
  • Lucas Oil 150
  • Lucas Oil 150
  • Lucas Oil 150
  • Lucas Oil 150
  • Lucas Oil 150
  • Busch Wins at Texas
  • Busch Wins at Texas
  • Busch Wins at Texas
  • Wallace Honors Scott
  • Wallace Honors Scott
  • Wallace Honors Scott
  • Wallace Honors Scott
  • Wallace Honors Scott
  • Wallace Honors Scott
  • Wallace Honors Scott
  • Wallace Honors Scott
  • Wallace Honors Scott

Advertisement

  • © 2014 MRN. All Rights Reserved

    FacebookTwitterDiggDeliciousLinkedInGoogle BookmarksYahoo BookmarksLive (MSN)

    ISC Track Sites