Todd Gilliland scored podium finishes in both Twin 100s that comprised a NASCAR K&N Pro Series East doubleheader at Virginia’s South Boston Speedway on Saturday night.
The 16-year-old from Sherrills Ford, North Carolina drove the Bill McAnally Racing No. 16 NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota Camry to a third-place finish in the first race and capped that off with a runner-up finish in the second event.
“My NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota Camry was on a rail tonight,” said Gilliland, a member of the NASCAR Next program that spotlights NASCAR’s rising stars. “It was probably one of the best cars I’ve ever had.”
Gilliland, who started both races from fifth on the grid, had to charge through the field in the first race – after getting a flat tire in a multi-car incident and restarting at the back of the field just past the midway point of the race.
“The first race, we were running down the leader about three-tenths a lap, then we lost a right front tire,” he said. “Our BMR team did a great job and we didn’t lose a lap. We just picked them off one at a time and ended up third in that race.”
In the second race, Gilliland worked his way to the front and took the lead just after a Lap 81 restart. He got shuffled back to second on a subsequent restart in the closing laps, however, when the second-place car was penalized by NASCAR for a restart violation.
“We definitely had a much less eventful race overall in the second event,” Gilliland said. “We were able to get the lead and held it on that last restart; but the 17 car, Chase Purdy, jumped the restart a little bit and opened the door for the 12 car. From there, it was hard racing. It was tough finish.”
With his two podium finishes, Gilliland moved to second in the championship standings, 18 points out of first. He has three top-five and five top-10 finishes in five starts this season.
Travis Miller won the first Twin 100 on Saturday, with Harrison Burton grabbing the checkered flag in the second. The Twin 100s, which were the sixth and seventh series races held at the historic South Boston track, will be televised on NBCSN on May 11 at 7 and 8 p.m. ET.
The next event on the K&N Pro Series East schedule will be the inaugural series visit to Memphis International Raceway in Millington, Tennessee on June 3.