'Always fun to be able to go home': Wisconsin drivers ready to take on Milwaukee Mile during NASCAR weekend

NOW: ’Always fun to be able to go home’: Wisconsin drivers ready to take on Milwaukee Mile during NASCAR weekend

WEST ALLIS, Wis. (CBS 58) -- When the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series returns to the Milwaukee Mile this weekend for the first time since 2009, the state of Wisconsin will be well represented on the race track.

Thirty-seven drivers will be qualifying for 36 spots in Sunday afternoon's Clean Harbors 175. Four of those drivers are from the Badger State: Dexter Bean, Josh Bilicki, Derek Kraus and Truck Series playoffs leader Ty Majeski.

"I'm really looking forward to it," said Kraus, a short-track racing standout from Stratford who is looking to make his third start at the Mile on Sunday after two super late model races on the historic speedway. "It's always fun to be able to go home and race in front of a really big crowd."

A really big crowd is what the race's promoters and Wisconsin State Fair Park are hoping for, with promoters telling CBS 58 15,000 fans in the stands on Sunday would be considered a success for a track that has struggled with attendance in the past.

In an effort to get fans at the track and excited for the weekend, fans can get in for free on Saturday from 1 to 3:30 p.m. to watch Truck Series and ARCA Series practice.

"I hope the stands are packed," said Josh Bilicki, who will be racing a truck this weekend with Young's Motorsports. "Four Wisconsin drivers in the field. I think that's huge for our Wisconsin racing industry. There's so many passionate fans here in Wisconsin."

While Majeski may be considered a favorite to win the race, Kraus and Bilicki are both hopeful to have strong showings at the Mile, with dozens of their family and friends expected in the stands Sunday afternoon.

They're also grateful to be back on the NASCAR grid for such a big race.

"Of course, you want, you want to go and win. Just to be able to go there and get a good finish in front of a hometown crowd would be really special to me," Kraus said. "I really think it should put on a really good race."

"Kind of brings it full circle because I raced go-karts there, on the oval, in 2005," Bilicki said. "I was in 5th grade at that point. Never really thought I'd be racing NASCAR at that track."

The green flag for the ARCA Menards Series Sprecher 150 flies at noon on Sunday.

Green Flag for the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Clean Harbors 175 flies at 3 p.m. on Sunday.

Tickets can be purchased here.

Share this article:
Sign up for the Sports Newsletter