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February 10, 2017

Byron stays on NASCAR fast track during freshman year at Liberty

Liberty University freshman William Byron stands with the new Liberty University No. 9 Chevy Camaro he will drive during his rookie season with JR Motorsports (JRM) on the Xfinity Series.

Liberty University freshman William Byron stands with the new Liberty University No. 9 Chevy Camaro he will drive during his rookie season with JR Motorsports (JRM) on the Xfinity Series.

Liberty University freshman William Byron lived life in the fast lane this fall, adjusting to classes and activities as a residential student during the week, then shifting gears on the weekend to complete a phenomenal rookie season in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.

“The key to success is adapting to different environments almost every week — doing something different and learning from it,” Byron told “Game On,” a TV sports show produced by the Liberty Flames Sports Network (LFSN).

Byron was named Rookie of the Year after winning a rookie-record seven races and helping to clinch the Truck Series Owners’ Championship for Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM) and crew chief Rudy Fugle.

“It feels awesome. It’s incredible,” Byron said after he qualified for the pole (starting in the first position on the track) and claimed his seventh win of the season at Homestead-Miami Speedway, the series’ final race. “This team has worked so hard all year. It’s just insane how good they are — so many talented people. I can’t thank KBM and Liberty University enough.”

On Nov. 8, Michael Waltrip, NASCAR veteran and FOX Sports analyst, took a video tour of campus with Byron, interviewing him about life at Liberty and how the business communications major balances it with a full-time racing career. Three days later, Byron earned his second pole of the season and was dominating the Lucas Oil 150 at Phoenix International Raceway when, with only nine laps to go, his engine blew out. That eliminated the series points leader from competing for the championship, but he regained momentum for the 2017 season at Miami-Homestead (the final race of 2016) with a third pole and a decisive win.

For the fourth consecutive year, Byron moved up to a new race series (division) when he signed a multi-year contract with Hendrick Motorsports to race in the Xfinity Series for JR Motorsports. The Hendrick team includes seven-time Sprint Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson.

“I really want to be in a Cup (Series) car one day,” he said. “It’s pretty incredible to know that’s even possible now, being with Hendrick Motorsports. I just can’t wait for the future, and I hope that’s a possibility down the road. That would be all I can really ask for.”

Byron recently extended his sponsorship deal with Liberty, which will be his primary sponsor for 17 of the 33 races in the Xfinity Series. The series starts Feb. 25 at Daytona International Speedway, where Byron will debut the No. 9 Liberty University Chevy Camaro.

2017 Races with Liberty university as the primary sponsor

Check the full NASCAR Xfinity Series schedule at WilliamByron.com

2/25 Powershares QQQ 300, Daytona International Speedway (FX1)
3/4 Rinnai 250, Atlanta Motor Speedway (FX1)
3/11 Boyd Gaming 300, Las Vegas Motor Speedway (FX1)
4/22 Fitzgerald Glider Kits 300, Bristol Motor Speedway (FX1)
5/6 Sparks Energy 300, Talladega Superspeedway (FOX)
6/10 Pocono 250, Pocono Raceway (FX1)
6/17 Michigan 250, Michigan International Speedway (FX1)
7/22 Indianapolis 250, Indianapolis Motor Speedway (NBCSN)
7/29 U.S. Cellular 250, Iowa Speedway (NBCSN)
8/27 Road America 180 Fired Up By Johnsonville, Road America (Wisc.) (NBC)
9/8 Virginia529 College Savings 250, Richmond International Raceway (NBCSN)
9/16 Chicagoland 300, Chicagoland Speedway (NBCSN)
9/23 VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300, Kentucky Speedway (NBCSN)
10/6 Blue Cross/Blue Shield of North Carolina Drive for the Cure 300, Charlotte Motor Speedway (NBCSN)
11/4 O’Reilly Auto Parts 300,  Texas Motor Speedway (NBCSN)
11/11 Ticket Galaxy 200, Phoenix International Raceway (NBC)
11/18 Ford Ecoboost 300, Homestead-Miami Speedway (NBCSN)

2016 Races won by William Byron in his No. 9 Liberty University Toyota Tundra:

No. 4 Kansas Speedway, May 6
No. 7 Texas Motor Speedway, June 10
No. 8 Iowa Speedway, June 18
No. 10 Kentucky Speedway, July 7
No. 12 Pocono Raceway, July 30
No. 17 New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Sept. 24
No. 23 Homestead-Miami Speedway Nov. 18

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