NASCAR Xfinity: Josh Bilicki makes series oval debut at Phoenix
By AMANDA VINCENT
Obaika Racing will put Josh Bilicki and Ryan Ellis in its two NASCAR Xfinity Series entries for Saturday’s Ticket Galaxy 200 at Phoenix International Raceway in Avondale, Ariz. Bilicki will drive the No. 97 Chevrolet, while Ellis will drive the No. 77.
Saturday’s race will be Bilicki’s second race for Obaika and his second-career series start. He drove the No. 77 for the team at the road course of Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wis., earlier this season. He wound up 38th in that race because of an electrical issue.
“I’m very excited to make my NASCAR Xfinity Series oval debut with Obaika Racing in the No. 97 Vroom Brands Chevy Camaro. We had a great run at Road America and showed lots of potential as a team. It has been several years since my last oval race, so it’s going to be a bit of a learning experience for me, but I feel I am more prepared than ever and will push for a maximum result for the team.”
Bilicki’s start at Road America is his only start, to date, in any NASCAR series. He has several years of SCCA racing experience, and last year, he competed in the IMSA Continental Tire Sportscar Challenge.
Ellis, though, has quite a bit of Xfinity Series experience, with 45-career starts to his credit. He already has made 16 starts in the series in 2016, nine of those for Obaika Racing. His other Xfinity starts this season came from behind the wheel of a Rick Ware Racing entry. Ellis has two top-20 finishes, so far, this season, both for RWR. He finished 15th at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway in July and 18th at Road America.