Home Other With Local Support, Anderson Revs Up For Saturday’s NASCAR Camping Truck Event At Gateway

With Local Support, Anderson Revs Up For Saturday’s NASCAR Camping Truck Event At Gateway

by Brian Ledford

When most are deep in slumber, there’s a pretty good chance that NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver Jordan Anderson is, somewhere out there, posting on Twitter.

He has over 35,000 followers on the platform and, not surprisingly, keeps them all perpetually engaged at odd hours.

The 1:30 a.m. entry during a Buc-ee’s convenience store fuel-stop in Terrell, Texas? Standard ops.

The 4:30 a.m. point-of-view steering wheel picture featuring a Louisiana sunrise? The standard “rubber meets the road” image.

Random overnight snappers from the garage of his headquarters in Statesville, North Carolina? Just another day.

It is not that the South Carolina-native has insomnia, nor does he have an odd addiction to social media.

It’s more the by-product of being both a driver and, more importantly, an enthusiastic owner that’s well-aware of self-marketing at a D.I.Y. level.

“It’s funny because when I fill out paperwork, there’s a line for the driver and a line for the owner,” said the 27-year-old that has competed in the series since 2015. “So much of our journey has been doing whatever we can to get to the track each and every week.”

Judging by his work ethic, and ensuing Twitter time stamps, Anderson only operates at two speeds: “on” and “off.” The latter, honestly, doesn’t seem to exist.

“We’re usually the last ones to leave the garage area,” he said. “We’re hanging out with fans and other teams and we’re hanging out at restaurants outside of the track with people after the race is over. We’re building some amazing relationships and friendships along the way. You can’t put a price tag on that.”

Anderson brings his #3 Chevrolet to the 1.25-mile oval at Gateway Motorsports Park this Saturday for the Eaton 200. The tenth stop of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series’ 23-race docket has a green flag that flies at 7:30 p.m.

“Gateway has always been one of my favorite tracks to run on the circuit,” Anderson assessed of the venue for the 160-lap event. “it’s where I got my first Top 15 finish back in 2015.”

After spending three full seasons as a driver in the series, the jovial jockey announced this past January that he would race the 2018 season under the Jordan Anderson Racing flagship as owner/driver.

And it came to no one’s surprise that his initial Twitter alert of the reveal was unveiled at 2 a.m.

“It’s been pretty amazing,” said Anderson. “Our team is built on grass-roots fundamentals. It’s me and three other guys in the race shop. We’ve got a 40-foot trailer, which is one of the smallest in the Truck Series garage, but we’ve got the most heart in that trailer.”

Anderson also has a personal, local connection to the Gateway race as St. Louis’ Bommarito Automotive Group has been a primary sponsor of his team this season.

The relationship between the pair was indirectly launched as Anderson’s team was working at former NASCAR driver Kenny Wallace’s shop in Arnold, Missouri prior to a 2016 Gateway appearance. Officials from the Madison oval were visiting Anderson and provided guidance and influence.

”I started talking to the (Gateway) guys there and I said, Hey, I don’t have any sponsors,’” said Anderson.  “My truck was just blank-white. I asked them if there was anyone that we could throw on there. They recommended the guys from the Bommarito Group.”

Early donation of tires cultivated to full-fledged support that now sees both working equally-hard to promote the #3 Chevy within the competitive series.

“It really fits well because what we stand for is what they stand for,” said Anderson of the automotive powerhouse. “We started with nothing but now we’ve got four trucks. They started small and they built up and they’re all about family.”

Comparable to the high-octane action found on ovals, Anderson devotes plenty of sweat-equity to building a fan base off-track. During the series’ stop at Kansas Speedway in early-May, the driver/owner could be found perpetually posing selfies with fans prior to race time.

In fact, he grabbed the iPhone of one gleeful youngster and snapped the picture himself. The pattern continued with video posts on Pit Row until he entered his #3 Chevy for the “37 Kind Days 250.”

He started 21st in the 32-car field, but early mechanical problems resulted in laps lost. The team finished 25th for the race but completion was better than total submission.

Even with the setback, Anderson posted video in the wee hours thanking both fans and sponsors for support and projecting future optimism. In today’s sports marketing world, his genuine, heart-felt delivery couldn’t have been executed any better.

“I wanna show a decal on my helmet for you guys,” he said in the video submission that zeroed in on the head piece. “It says, ‘Head Held High!’ Never give up!”

After launching the season at Daytona with a ninth-place finish, Anderson currently sits in 16th place in the series’ hierarchy, which includes his 23rd-place finish at the M&M’s 200 held at Iowa Speedway this past Saturday, where a conked-out engine ended his evening at Lap 153.

That being said, he was quick to update his social media followers on the situation and a push ahead to Saturday’s Gateway event. After all, one has to keep the masses informed, right?

Anderson’s team will compete at all 23 races this season, so a Top 15-series finish come November is the modest goal but a Top 10 is preferred. Anderson hopes that his self-financed, hard-working journey that is perpetually being penned leads to inspiration for others.

“Whether it’s racing, football, baseball, starting you own business, for anybody,” he said. “Hopefully our story is the motivation for them.”

And it will come to no one’s surprise that Anderson’s motivation will let everyone know how the impending chapters unfold…even when one glazes at their Rice Krispies.

Saturday’s race can be seen on Fox Sports 1 and heard on the MRN radio network.

Follow Jordan Anderson on Twitter.

Tickets for the race at Gateway are available at this link.

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By trade, he is a six-time, regional Emmy Award-winning news videographer/editor for KTVI/KPLR-TV. By hobby, he is an announcer and digital content producer for St. Louis-based Arch Rival Roller Derby. Also a webcast announcer for post-season roller derby tournaments on wftda.tv. Yep, this Illinoisan primarily writes about derby, covering Arch Rival, the St. Chux Derby Chix and the STL GateKeepers men's league. He also writes about St. Louis SLAM Women's Football, St. Louis Lions women's soccer and other sports topics.

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