Crew member suspended: Marshal Faust, a crew member in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, has been indefinitely suspended from NASCAR for violating the sanctioning body's Substance Abuse Policy. On Dec. 12, 2014, Faust was found to have violated Sections 12-1 (actions detrimental to stock car racing) and 19 (violation of the NASCAR Substance Abuse Policy) of the 2014 NASCAR Rule Book.(NASCAR)(12-18-2014)
Kennedy joins Red Horse UPDATE: 2014 Sonoco Rookie of the Year Ben Kennedy will join Timothy Peters at Red Horse Racing in 2015, the team announced on Wednesday. Peters will return to the #17 Toyota and Kennedy will join the team behind the wheel of the #11. German Quiroga, who has driven the #77 for RHR the last two seasons, will not return.(Twitter)(12-17-2014)
UPDATE: Red Horse Racing announced today that 2014 Sunoco Rookie of the Year Ben Kennedy will join the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series team to drive the #11 Toyota Tundra. Kennedy began his racing career in quarter-midgets, later graduating to full-sized stock trucks on the short tracks of central Florida. The Daytona Beach native won Pro-Truck championship titles in 2009, and followed with a Super Late Model championship and Rookie of the Year honors in 2010. Kennedy entered the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East in 2011. In 2012, he made history winning the first NASCAR-sanctioned Euro Racecar Series oval track event at Tours Speedway in France. In 2013, Kennedy finished fourth in the K&N Pro Series East championship point standings with two wins, one pole award, three top-five and nine top-10 finishes, and was crowned the series' Most Popular Driver. He entered full-time NASCAR Camping World Truck Series competition in 2014, starting on the pole for the season-opener at Daytona International Speedway, one top-five and seven top-10 finishes, and claiming Rookie of the Year honors.(Red Horse Racing)(12-17-2014)
Turner Scott equipment sold: The closure of Turner Scott Motorsports concluded with the selling of equipment over the last few weeks. Employees were laid off following the season-finale in November, and the building, located at 112 Byers Creek Road in Mooresville, NC now sits empty awaiting new tenants, Richard Petty Motorsports. Ben Kennedy, who ended the season as the only remaining full-time Camping World Truck Series driver for the team, earned the 2014 Rookie of the Year award, has not yet announced his 2015 racing plans. Steve Turner had fielded truck entries since 2009. The team won the 2012 truck championship with driver James Buescher. In August, the team announced initial layoffs and the closure of the #30 team with driver Ron Hornaday, Jr. as co-owners Steve Turner and Harry Scott, Jr. each filed lawsuits against each other over various financial issues. Scott, who also runs the HScott Motorsports #51 Sprint Cup Series team, recently announced he was merging with Chip Ganassi Racing to field a team in the Xfinity (formerly Nationwide) Series for 2015.(12-16-2014)
Black to run full schedule with SS in 2015: After running seven NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races in 2014, SS Green Light Racing is pleased to announce that Ray Black Jr. will run the full NCWTS schedule for the Mooresville based team in 2015 driving the #07 ScubaLife Chevy Silverado. ScubaLife will be the primary sponsor for Black's #07 Dive Truck with support from NASE Worldwide and CDA Technical Institute. The Florida native will run for the NCWTS Rookie of the Year award. Black started in motorsports at age 14 racing in the Florida Mini Cup Racing Association (FMCRA). After a couple seasons, he progressed through the asphalt ranks running in the Advance Auto Parts Pro Truck series and various late model series throughout the Southeastern United States. In 2014 Ray ran several late model races in addition to his limited NCWTS schedule where he proved his consistency behind the wheel finishing 6 of 7 races and completing over 92% of total possible laps. One of the most tenured teams in all of NASCAR racing, the SS Green Light Racing team has run 335 consecutive NCWTS races, a streak that dates back to 2001.(SS Green Light Racing)(12-16-2014)
Minor to run more races in 2015: McCallister Precision Marketing and Findit.net announce a key sponsorship for two drivers in the 2015 season. Findit.net will be sponsoring NASCAR driver, Ted Minor and Southeast Super Truck Series driver, Cole Glasson. For Ted Minor, having Findit.net on board for another season will mean more races for him. "I am elated to have Findit.net return as a sponsor for 2015. This will allow us to compete in even more Camping World Truck Series races next season. It is nice to be affiliated with a product such as Findit.net. Our hope is to help brand them in motorsports with some of the sports most loyal fans."(MPM Marketing)(12-15-2014)
GMS moving race shop: GMS Racing, currently fielding multiple teams in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series as well as in the Automobile Racing Club of America Racing Series, will have a new place to call home. GMS Racing announced today that the team's race operations will move from their current location in Charlotte to Statesville, N.C. at the end of the year. GMS Racing's new address will be 310 Aviation Drive in Statesville. This location formerly housed Richard Petty Motorsports. The new facility is a sizeable expansion of space from the current location in Charlotte that will allow for growth in race operations as well as further opportunities to increase performance development potential. The new shop will allow for GMS Racing to be an all-in-one facility for the growing team, and allowing the team to have additional space for engineering and simulation. The team acquired three industrial buildings located adjacent to the Statesville Regional Airport in October. The three buildings that once housed Richard Petty Motorsports and Evernham Motorsports totals 157,743 square feet. The new site will be the home of GMS Racing's NASCAR Camping World Truck Series teams as well as their ARCA Racing Series team. By January 2015, all of GMS Racing's race teams will be able to call the campus home.(GMS Racing)(12-15-2014)
Xfinity, Truck teams will get more on track time: While NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams will have numerous opportunities to take part in open team tests in 2015, organizations competing in the XFINITY and Camping World Truck Series will also get additional track time. But unlike the Sprint Cup sessions, which will coincide with Goodyear tire and NASCAR tests, the two series will be provided extended practice sessions during race weekends. The only off-site test currently scheduled for XFINITY and the NCWTS is a Goodyear tire test set for May 5 at Iowa Speedway. The use of extended practice sessions "is a cost-effective way for giving XFINITY and Trucks testing without sending them off on a separate trip," NASCAR Senior Vice President of Innovation and Racing Development Gene Stefanyshyn said. "So we're giving those two series where cost is a bigger concern extends practice sessions, which we will fit into the race-schedule weekends. We're not going to add days (at the track) and all that; we're going to figure out how to stuff it in there." The extended sessions will be only for XFINITY and NCWTS teams, although sessions for Sprint Cup have been altered in the past when necessary (such as due to weather issues). The length of the extended sessions will vary, depending on at-track activities for each event, with a maximum of three hours.(NASCAR.com)(12-12-2014)
With driving options limited, Hornaday returns to his roots: Ron Hornaday Jr. has partnered with Indiana-based Diamond Chassis. After 25 seasons in NASCAR, four truck titles and 61 victories on the top four tours, the champ is transitioning to the fabrication side of the sport. Hornaday, along with wife Lindy, manufactured chassis under Victory Circle for the Southwest Tour prior to moving to North Carolina to race trucks for Dale Earnhardt Inc. when the series debuted. His recent experience with Diamond Chassis' Ryan Thomas while building cars for Hornaday's grandson Slater Blickensderfer led to the opportunity. While Hornaday, 56, would love to continue racing in the truck series - and would contemplate a farewell tour - nothing has materialized for 2015. Hornaday was as high as second in the truck point standings this season before Turner Scott Motorsports fell apart. In 17 seasons in the truck series, Hornaday posted 51 wins, 158 top-fives and 234 top 10 finishes in 360 starts. He earned 27 poles for an average qualifying effort of 8.8 and an average finish of 10.1.(Motorsport.com)(12-12-2014)
KBM names crew chiefs: Kyle Busch Motorsports announced that veteran crew chief Jerry Baxter will move over to call the shots for the back-to-back reigning NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Owner's Champion #51 team and the addition of Shannon Rursch as crew chief for Sunoco Rookie of the Year candidate Justin Boston's full-time effort for 2015 in the #54 Tundra. The two join Ryan "Rudy" Fugle, who was previously announced as the crew chief for Erik Jones' full-time campaign next season behind the wheel of the #4 Tundra, as the signal callers for the team's three-truck effort next season. Baxter joined KBM at the beginning of 2013 and served as crew chief for the #54 Tundra team with Darrell Wallace Jr. the last two seasons. Under the veteran's guidance, Wallace Jr. finished third in the Truck Series championship standings in 2014 and led all series regulars in wins (4), laps led (623), driver rating (109.5) and fastest laps run (280). Combined in two seasons, the duo posted five wins, three poles, 963 laps led, 14 top-five and 26 top-10 finishes across 44 starts. The California native, who will be one of six members that will be inducted into the West Coast Stock Car Hall of Fame in 2015, will have team owner-driver Kyle Busch, Daniel Suarez and Matt Tifft sharing the seat of his #51 Tundra next season. Rursch comes to KBM from Turner Scott Motorsports, where he most recently served as crew chief for the #31 team in the NASCAR Nationwide Series. In addition to his time atop the pit box for the Nationwide Series team in 2014, he collected three top-10 finishes in four starts calling the shots for TSM in select Truck Series events last season. The Iowa native is a 2004 graduate of the NASCAR Technical Institute and upon his promotion in July became the first alumnus of the school to be named a crew chief in one of NASCAR's top three divisions. The 10-year veteran of the sport got his start as a mechanic at Sadler Racing in 2004 and then served as a car chief at Evernham Motorsports, Phoenix Racing and Robby Gordon Motorsports before moving to the same position at TSM in 2010.(Kyle Busch Motorsports)(12-11-2014)
Affarano expanding team: In an effort to provide a solid foundation for his business and provide greater appeal to sponsors, race car driver and team owner, Mike Affarano, announced today that he is working to increase his current stable of vehicles from NASCAR's Camping World Trucks to now include race cars that are to run in NASCAR's Xfinity Series starting in February's inaugural Daytona race. Affarano has been in closed door talks and discussions with race driver and winner of the 2010 Snowball Derby: Johanna Long and her manager, Brett Griffin. Johanna Long the 22 year old from Pensacola, Florida has already made a name for herself with her 2010 Snowball Derby win and with over 66 starts in both the NASCAR Truck and Nationwide Series.
"My desire is to secure sponsorship for Johanna and I to run the full season of NASCAR's Camping World Truck and Xfinity Series that would be ideal for us," Mike stated. "But, I'd be willing to running a limited season or take a backseat and just be an owner if that means that Johanna can run a full season and be competitive against the other contenders on the field."(Affarano Motorsports)
AND: Affarano Motorsports attempted to make four Camping World Truck Series races in 2014, making three of the races with driver Mike Affarano in the #03 Won-N-Done Automotive Care Products Chevy with David McClure as the crew chief.(12-9-2014)
Wallace asks for release from JGR for potential move to Roush Fenway UPDATE 2: Darrell Wallace Jr., who won four races this season in the NASCAR Truck Series and finished third in the series standings, has asked out of his contract with Joe Gibbs Racing, multiple sources confirmed to ThatsRacin.com and the Charlotte Observer. Although Wallace, 21, has experienced substantial success in the Truck series with Kyle Busch Motorsports the past two seasons, JGR - with whom he is under contract - had been unable to secure sponsorship for Wallace to run fulltime in any NASCAR national series in 2015. The move will allow Wallace, whose victory at Martinsville, Va., last season made him just the second African-American to win a national series race in NASCAR history, to join another organization that can provide him a fulltime ride. A spokesman for JGR declined to comment when asked by the Observer if Wallace had received a release from his contract with the organization. The most likely destination for Wallace appears to be Roush Fenway Racing, sources said. RFR already plans to field Nationwide teams for drivers Elliott Sadler, Chris Buescher and Ryan Reed in 2015. A request for comment was not immediately returned by RFR. Wallace was expected to run up to a 10 races next season with JGR in what will become the Xfinity Series on Jan. 1. JGR owner Joe Gibbs had said he expected to have a "big program" for the driver who was born in Mobile, Ala., but grew up in the Charlotte area. In interviews before the end of the season, Wallace said he was not worried about the lack of a fulltime ride. "I'll take what I can get," he said. "I can only go out there and continue to run up front, lead laps, and win races."(Charlotte Observer)(12-7-2014)
UPDATE: Darrell Wallace Jr., the first African-American driver to win a NASCAR national series race in nearly 50 years, has been granted his release from Joe Gibbs Racing so he can sign with another team for 2015. According to sources, Roush Fenway Racing is the leading candidate for the 21-year-old Wallace with a full-time ride in the Xfinity Series. Neither Roush Fenway officials nor Wallace's agent immediately returned messages seeking comment. A JGR spokesman confirmed Wallace's release Monday morning. In 2013 and 2014, Wallace drove on loan to Kyle Busch Motorsports, where he finished eighth in the Camping World Truck Series standings as a rookie and then third in 2014. He earned his first truck win in October 2013 at Martinsville, the first African-American to win a NASCAR national series race since Wendell Scott won a Cup event in December 1963 in Jacksonville. Wallace won three more races in the series in 2014. He also competed in two Nationwide Series (now Xfinity Series) events in 2014 for JGR, finishing seventh in the July race in Daytona. Despite his success, JGR had trouble finding sponsorship for him. It was angling to have at least 15 races in the Xfinity Series for him in 2015, but Wallace obviously wanted a full season.(Sporting News)(12-8-2014)
UPDATE 2:A formal announcement is expected soon, but Motorsport.com has learned that 21-year-old NASCAR Camping World truck series driver Darrell Wallace, Jr., will move to the Xfinity (formerly Nationwide) series in 2015 driving not for Joe Gibbs Racing, but for Roush Fenway as a fourth entry. Chad Norris is expected to be named Wallace's crew chief. Wallace was granted a release from his Gibbs contract to take the Ford ride after Gibbs was unable to guarantee the former Drive for Diversity racer a full-time job for 2015. Wallace became the first African-American driver since 1963 to win a race in a NASCAR touring series when he took a victory in the Camping World series in 2013, and he backed that up with four more wins in 2014. Wallace had been driving for Kyle Busch Motorsports with Gibbs backing. Norris had been crew chief for Cup driver Carl Edwards and most recently Trevor Bayne.(Motorsport.com)(12-9-2014)
Nemechek wins Snowball Derby: John Hunter Nemechek raced to the win taking the 47th Annual Snowball Derby at Five Flags Speedway in Pensacola, Fla. today in his third start in the event. Nemechek, who took the lead at lap 286, was not to be dismissed in his second of two races at Five Flags this weekend. He finished second in the Snowflake 100 which had finished mere hours earlier but with a gutsy pit call and undeniable talent, the rising star brought home his crowning achievement in the Pensacola win. Nemechek, who started racing in quarter midgets at age five, has made a steady progression and has had much success along the way including winning 15 of 18 races en route to the Allison Legacy Touring Series Championship in 2013. Competing in his NEMCO Motorsports late model is a by-design initiative that has been fundamental in his development. Competing in his second Snowflake and third Snowball event, he relied on his previous experience there as well as the momentum from his most recent win in the All-American 400 at Fairgrounds Speedway Nashville (Tenn.) on November 1. Nemechek also competed on a limited-schedule in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series where in just 10 starts, he earned an impressive six top-10 finishes including a top-five run at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Plans for 2015 include a similar late model program as well as returning to his #8 SWM-NEMCO Motorsports entry in truck series action. At age 17, Nemechek is restricted to running on tracks 1.25-miles or less and the road course. Turning 18 on June 11, he will finish out the remainder of the truck series schedule beginning with Kentucky Speedway on July 9, 2015.(NEMCO Motorsports)(12-8-2014)
NASCAR considering changes to Xfinity, Trucks championship format: NASCAR is discussing how to determine the XFINITY and Camping World Truck champions this coming season. Steve O'Donnell, executive vice president and chief racing development officer for NASCAR, declined to say Wednesday to Motor Racing Network what the format will be for those two series this coming season. "We look at every championship every year," O'Donnell said after speaking at Sports Business Journal's Motorsports Marketing Forum at Aria Resort. "I can't tell you if it's going to change. We're still looking at it." Although NASCAR is examining the issue, it does not mean that a change is coming. Still, NASCAR is pleased with the results of the new Chase format, which created a buzz with its eliminations and one-race championship battle at Homestead-Miami Speedway. "We think we hit a home run," O'Donnell said about the Chase during his presentation. "We are really excited with how it came out. I think one of the biggest assets of the Chase is the dialogue around the number of teams, which means more sponsors are being talked about, more drivers. If you take that same mentality, why wouldn't we want 10 or 12 drivers being talked about in the XFINITY Series, 10 or 12 drivers being talked about Camping World? I'm not saying we're there yet, but there is some dialogue going on about what we could do in the future."(Motor Racing Network)(12-3-2014)
Keselowski limits involvement despite financial loss: Brad Keselowski says his NASCAR Camping Work Truck team lost $1 million this past season and admits he's at his financial breaking point. Keselowski revealed his team's financial loss Tuesday while speaking at the Motorsports Marketing Forum sponsored by Street and Smith's SportsBusiness Daily/Global/Journal. Keselowski said that his organization brings in between $7-$8 million in revenue a year and loses about $1 million a season. "The role that I have as an owner in the Truck Series is not about the financials,'' he said. "There's a lot better investments.'' Keselowski, who grew up in a racing family, continues to operate the team despite the losses to reinvest in the sport.
Brad Keselowski Racing will field two teams this coming season. Tyler Reddick will drive the #19 Truck. The driver for the #29 Truck has yet to be announced. Keselowski said he'll run only three races in that Truck.
The organization suffered financial hardships despite its most successful season this past year. Ryan Blaney finished second in the points, scoring one win. Reddick, running a majority of the races, finished 12th in points. Keselowski ran three races, winning once. So, how does Keselowski hope to help his team survive? "It's really simple, you've got to cut costs and raise more revenue,'' he told Motor Racing Network. "It's easier said than done. It's all hands on deck to make that happen. I worry all the time about it. "I'm not interested in being involved in the Truck Series if I don't feel like we can be competitive. My breaking point is two areas - it's going broke and not being competitive. We have to walk that line every day with every decision we make.'' One solution would be for Keselowski to run more races. It's easier to find sponsorship for established drivers - especially a Sprint Cup champion such as Keselowski - than drivers who are not as well known to sponsors. It's among the reasons why some Cup drivers race in Truck and Nationwide events. Keselowski, though, is steadfast in his three-race limit. "I refuse to run more than that,'' Keselowski told MRN. "That's my breaking point. It's about feeling right about my level of involvement. I don't want to run 10 races and the question becomes what am I doing here? Am I doing this because I want to win races as a driver or I want to win races as an owner? "If I'm doing it to just to win races as a driver, quite honestly, it doesn't make any sense because essentially I'm paying to win a Truck race or to run a Truck race. Why would I want to do that? That's not reinvesting in the sport. "If I ran the whole season I could bring in all the revenue to prop the program up. I feel like once you get over three races as a Cup driver in the Truck series you've kind of worn out your welcome.''(Motor Racing Network)(12-3-2014)
NASCAR driver Brian Rose accused of scamming investors UPDATE: A former NASCAR driver is at the center of a $15 million fraud investigation and is accused of creating a fake coal mining company to get money from investors. Federal agents launched a massive investigation into Brian Rose after an alleged victim from Charlotte came forward. The Secret Service said the accused tried to cover every detail to convince investors it was the real deal. In the indictment, federal prosecutors named Rose as the ringleader of this elaborate coal-mining scheme. The defendants would call investors saying New Century Coal was looking to mine low sulfur and low ash coal in Kentucky and Tennessee, according to the documents. They promised a quarterly return of 6 percent until operations began. After that, investors would receive 100 percent or more during the first year of mining. The indictment stated the nine defendants were very careful to cover their tracks. Two of them legally changed their names and attached those names to New Century Coal. The defendants also created ghost companies to ease investors' suspicions. Prosecutors said the defendants also spent part of the $15 million on "lavish gambling trips to Las Vegas" and buying and training thoroughbred horses. All nine defendants are now charged with conspiracy to commit wire and mail fraud. The Secret Service already seized a number of race cars, race horses and property from Rose and the other defendants. Channel 9 learned Rose's father was sentenced to four years in prison for bilking $15 million out of investors for fraudulent oil and gas companies. The Secret Service said they are currently investigating another company called Earth Energy Exploration that was run by Rose and his family.(WSOC), Rose ran 41 Camping World Truck Series races between 2001 & 2010. He attempted the October 2002 Sprint Cup race at Martinsville, but did not qualify.(6-28-2014)
UPDATE: Former NASCAR driver Brian Rose has entered an agreement to plead guilty to mail fraud and wire fraud in association with a scheme that federal authorities allege he spearheaded to raise money, including funding to revive his racing career. The plea agreement was filed Monday in federal court in Tennessee. Rose faces a likely sentence between eight and 20 years in jail plus restitution, according to the sentencing levels described in the agreement. The government, in return for the plea, will drop additional charges of wire fraud that were part of the Ponzi scheme that the indictment states bilked more than 160 coal mine investors of $15 million.Once suspended by NASCAR for violating its substance-abuse policy, Rose's past marijuana and drug paraphernalia conviction, three DUI convictions and an assault conviction could increase his sentence. The 35-year-old driver has been in federal custody since June. No sentencing date has been set, and a spokeswoman for the U.S. attorney's office had no comment. Rose's attorney did not immediately return a request for comment.
Rose competed in 41 Camping World Truck Series races, primarily in 2001-02. He was suspended in April 2003 when he failed to take a NASCAR-mandated drug test, which he said at the time that he went to the wrong location. Five months later, he was arrested on drug possession charges. He was reinstated in 2010 and competed in three events that year. He hasn't competed in NASCAR since, but did compete in two ARCA races in 2011 and the 2014 season opener at Daytona.
According to the indictment, Rose, who went under the fake name of John Hankins, lured investors for coal mines, promising quarterly payments of six percent, a 100 percent return in the first year plus royalties of $4 per ton of coal produced. The government also asserts that after the Securities and Exchange Commission began investigating in late 2013, Rose continued the Ponzi scheme under the guise of a new business entity, according to court filings. Rose and his co-conspirators created ghost vendor companies to help with the scheme and when no funds were paid, they persuaded investors to swap ownership to different mines, allegedly providing false financial statements, list of mining expenses and documentation of coal produced. While the money went for Las Vegas trips and to purchase several horses, the indictment said Rose used some of the money for his race team and "acquisition of racing cars." Federal authorities are well acquainted with the Rose family. His father was once convicted of tax evasion and ordered to pay $15.4 million to settle securities fraud allegations.(Sporting News)(12-2-2014)
Kennedy uncertain of 2015 plans: Ben Kennedy, the great-grandson of NASCAR founder Bill France Sr., started his first season in the Truck series in the spotlight, winning the pole for the season opener at Daytona Beach, Fla. He led 52 laps in the race before finishing 15th. He added a third-place finish in the next race at Martinsville, Va. - a hard-nosed short track that rarely is kind to rookies. Kennedy, 22, ended up edging Tyler Reddick for rookie honors in a battle that went down to the season finale at Homestead, Fla. "I think everyone wants to get rookie of the year, ...and it's awesome to get it," Kennedy said. "I'm definitely humbled by it, and I'm looking forward to the future and seeing what we can do in the future." Kennedy's plans for 2015 remain unsettled, but he is certain to compete in either Truck or Nationwide, or perhaps a combination of both.(Charlotte Observer)(11-30-2014)
Silas to return: T3R Racing confirmed on the team Twitter page that Bryan Silas will return full-time to the Camping World Truck Series in 2015. In 2014, Silas finished 10th in the driver point standings in the #99 Chevy.(11-26-2014)
Burton among those waiting on sponsorship, Wallace still weighing all options: While nearly three months remain before the start of the 2015 season, most drivers like to have their sponsorship lined up. Companies need to budget the millions of dollars it takes, so few solid deals come along in January. For a driver who has five career wins, including four in 2014, in the Camping World Truck Series and four top-10s in six starts in what will be the Xfinity Series next season, how much more does (Darrell ) Wallace have to do? "I'll take what I can get," Wallace said. "I can only go out there and continue to run up front, lead laps, and win races." Wallace isn't alone among young drivers scrambling for sponsorship or still trying to figure out their 2015 plans. Jeb Burton, who was left without a ride at the start of the 2014 season when sponsorship fell through but then landed a full-time truck deal with sponsor Estes Express Lines and ThorSport Racing, is waiting to hear if the sponsorship will be renewed next season.
In the week after the Homestead race, JGR officials had some meetings that they hoped would land more sponsorship for Wallace, the only full-time African-American driver in the three national series. "We've got some good stuff lined up for him for next year, so I think we're going to wind up with a real good package for Darrell," Gibbs said.
If Wallace runs any truck races next season, it won't be for the team he has driven for the last two years. Kyle Busch Motorsports has all its seats filled, so he would have to run for another Toyota team, either ThorSport Racing or Red Horse Racing.(Sporting News)(11-24-2014)
New driver lineup to lighten Busch's schedule: Kyle Busch won't expect a repeat next year for his Camping World Truck Series team. That would be expected no matter who was driving the car for a team after a season where it won 14 of the 22 events. But Busch will continue a transition he hopes has more younger drivers in his Kyle Busch Motorsports trucks next year as he will drive just four of the 22 events while fielding three full-time trucks instead of two. Busch will put Erik Jones, who won three races last year, in a truck full time thanks to the help of KBM sponsor Toyota. He then will have another truck full time for the funded Justin Boston and another truck he will split with Matt Tifft (six races) and Daniel Suarez (12 races). Suarez, backed by companies owned by Mexican businessman Carlos Slim, will run a full Xfinity (formerly Nationwide) Series schedule next year for Joe Gibbs Racing and the KBM truck. Tifft also was able to bring some funding.
Busch said it is hard to find someone to come with the $3-3.5 million needed to fund a young driver for a full season. He won't try to do a program for less because he doesn't believe cutting corners is best for anyone. There is proof he is right. It is not rare to see owners come and go quickly in the series, including the latest Turner Scott Motorsports team that is not expected to compete next year and already has sold many of its trucks.
"They're spending too much of their own money," Busch said about the deals some drivers have brought to owners and then what happens to the owners. "It's not going to work. Look at what happened. It's a fickle business. It's tough. People always want to nickel and dime you and knock your price down but in reality, when you stand firm, you're going to be the last one standing."
It's that philosophy that led Busch out of the Xfinity Series. He tried to do a car for himself and brother Kurt in 2012 and while Kurt won one race, Kyle went winless. Parker Kligerman had some Toyota backing and other funding and ran a car for Busch in 2013. After two years and no wins, Busch closed that part of his operation.
"Been there, done that," Busch said about the possibility of going back to Xfinity. "It's just so hard to compete at that level."
Focusing just on trucks and what he had money to run paid dividends. Busch won seven truck races last year, while JGR development driver Darrell Wallace Jr. won four and Jones had three. Wallace is expected to run at least a part-time Xfinity schedule next year.(Sporting News)(11-24-2014)
Athenian switching to Chevy, Townley to return full-time: Athenian Motorsports, LLC is proud to announce it will field a Chevrolet Camaro full-time in the NASCAR Xfinity Series and a Chevrolet Silverado in all 23 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series events in 2015 with engines provided by Hendrick Motorsports. Georgia native John Wes Townley will compete full-time for AMS in the Truck Series and run a partial schedule on the circuit previously known as the Nationwide Series. Veteran crew chiefs Mike Ford and Michael Shelton will continue to call the shots for AMS. Ford, a multiple-race winner in NASCAR's Sprint Cup Series, will return to lead the Xfinity team. Michael Shelton, who guided James Buescher to a NASCAR Truck Series title, will direct Townley's 2015 effort in the Truck Series. Athenian Motorsports will call Concord, N.C. home, beginning in January. That's when the second-year organization will take possession of the 43,000 square foot facility adjacent to the Concord Regional Airport that currently houses Richard Petty Motorsports.(Athenian Motorsports)(11-21-2014)
FoxSports1 to have Nationwide, Truck banquet coverage: FOX Sports 1 offers coverage of the NASCAR Nationwide Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Awards Ceremony from the Trump National Doral Miami, the celebration's first year at the venue, on Sunday, Nov. 23 at 7:00pm/et. The joint NASCAR Nationwide and Camping World Truck Series celebration, hosted by NASCAR on FOX's Adam Alexander and Krista Voda and featuring musical performances by Gavin DeGraw and Jana Kramer, honors ThorSport Racing driver Matt Crafton as the first back-to-back NASCAR Camping World Truck Series champion and JR Motorsports' Chase Elliott as the NASCAR Nationwide Series champion. The top five drivers in each series also are celebrated during the banquet. Team Penske's #22 NASCAR Nationwide Series team and Kyle Busch Motorsports' #51 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series team are feted as winners of the season's owner championships. Among other honors handed out, Elliott, son of NASCAR Hall of Fame driver Bill Elliott, is recognized as the Nationwide Series' Most Popular Driver and Ryan Blaney as the Truck Series' Most Popular Driver.(FoxSports)(11-20-2014)
Quiroga working on 2015 plans: German Quiroga has not yet locked up his seat with Red Horse for the 2015 season. Homestead winner Darrell Wallace Jr. is in a similar position, but may end up landing a gig in the Nationwide (soon to be Xfinity Series). As for Quiroga, his NASCAR future rides on sponsorship money, just as so many others trying to make it today are. "I'm trying to put everything together to keep racing. Sponsorship wise, it's going to be hard. I'm trying so we can continue with this program and it all depends on how much money/sponsors we can have. We'll just have to see where we land."(Motorsport.com)(11-20-2014)
Crew member reinstated: NASCAR has reinstated Troy Cupples, a crew member in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, upon his successful completion of NASCAR's Substance Abuse Policy Road to Recovery Program. On Aug. 11, 2014, Couples was found to have violated Sections 12-1 (actions detrimental to stock car racing) and 19 (violation of the NASCAR Substance Abuse Policy) of the NASCAR Rule Book.(NASCAR)(11-18-2014)
Crafton, KBM honored: NASCAR's first year celebrating its Nationwide Series and Camping World Truck Series awards banquet at the Trump National Doral Miami feted one of the sport's newest champions and a repeat victor Monday night. But before the festivities came into full swing, it included a warm-up by the resort's namesake. The day after the thrilling conclusion to the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, Chase Elliott and Matt Crafton -- stock-car racing's other national series champions -- took center stage Monday as the toast of the glitzy Donald J. Trump Ballroom. But before their speeches and moments of remembrance, "The Donald" himself gave the industry a warm welcome. Participants in both series donned their formal best Monday evening, celebrating the accolades of two seasons of racing that began in February at Daytona.
Crafton's return to the head table came by virtue of his second straight title, a historic first for the Camping World Truck Series. Last season his heart-tugging acceptance speech took several emotional turns; this year, a quip beforehand about his 1 1/2-year-old daughter, Elladee, helped him channel his inner comic. "She's been around two years and I've won two truck series championships," Crafton said. "Why'd I wait so long to have kids?"
Ryan Blaney, the truck series' runner-up this year, brought home the most popular driver award in the Camping World Truck Series but waved off making an acceptance speech. The Team Penske #22 Ford (Nationwide) and Kyle Busch Motorsports #51 Toyota (trucks) were honored for their team owner championships in their respective series.
Sprint Cup regular Kyle Busch (Nationwide) also claimed top honors in the year-end Keystone Light and Coors Light Pole Awards, leading both series in the number of poles this season. Busch was also lauded with the Mobil 1 Driver of the Year in the truck series.(NASCAR.com)(11-18-2014)
Kennedy named Sonoco Rookie of the Year: For the first time since the NASCAR Next initiative was created in 2011, three of its alumni captured the Sunoco Rookie of the Year Awards in NASCAR's national series. Kyle Larson took home the honor in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, Chase Elliott added the accolade to his resume in the NASCAR Nationwide Series and Ben Kennedy earned the recognition competing in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. Kennedy, 22, was the highest rookie finisher in a NASCAR Camping World Truck Series-best eight races. Kennedy tied Tyler Reddick atop the rookie standings, winning the tiebreaker thanks to a final championship points position of ninth. Kennedy drove his #31 Turner Scott Motorsports Chevy Silverado to a career-best third-place finish at Martinsville in March.(NASCAR)(11-17-2014)
NEMCO planning another full run in 2015 with eyes on the future UPDATE: NEMCO Motorsports announced today plans to expand their late model program to include a second driver who will compete in a full-time Pro and Super Late Model Series effort in 2015. 19-year old Dominique Van Wieringen, a native of Amherstburg, Ontario, Canada, has been named as driver. "We've seen Dominique race at several events and feel like she'll be a great fit to expand our program. Being able to start at this level and help young drivers grow is just going to enhance our efforts in the truck series and beyond," said Nemechek. NEMCO Motorsports, which is operated by Nemechek and his family, has been active in NASCAR for nearly 25 years and boasts 25 wins on the NASCAR circuit. Today, father Joe and son, John Hunter, represent the team on the track racing in all three of NASCAR's national series and have shared driving duties in the #8 Toyota Tundra this season. Plans for 2015 include John Hunter, who has four late model wins this season to his credit, continuing to run in select late model events as he furthers his progression in the NASCAR ranks. NEMCO Motorsports will field the late model for Van Wieringen and will make an announcement later next month regarding sponsorship for their late model program. NEMCO Motorsports' 2015 plans will continue to include running a full season in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and select events in the NASCAR Nationwide Series.(NEMCO Motorsports)(10-30-2014)
UPDATE: While proud of the efforts of his son and team at NEMCO Motorsports this season, driver-owner Joe Nemechek is actually somewhat disappointed by their overall statistics. Entering Speedweeks and the start of the 2014 season, the 20-year NASCAR veteran actually expected the first-year Truck squad to challenge for wins against the likes of Kyle Busch Motorsports, Brad Keselowski Racing and ThorSports Motorsports, regardless of which driver was behind the wheel. Combined, the father-son duo finished with an average result of 10.0 with 15 top-10s in 22 events. With that said, he doesn't want those unfulfilled expectations to get misread as disappointment in John Hunter either. Despite the lack of victories, the elder Nemechek remains proud of his son and praised him after the race on Friday at Homestead. "I thought we were going to be better than we were this year," Nemechek told Popular Speed. "John Hunter has definitely come through. All of his races on the mile or less tracks, he's been awesome. He's had 10 really good runs and was close to winning a couple of them. I came close to winning one or two of them too and we've made some big gains at the end of the year. I'm looking forward to the beginning of next year. "
Next season will again see Joe and John Hunter split driving duties at least until the younger Nemechek turns 18-years-old on June 11. By this point, Front Row Joe hopes to have found sponsorship to have a second truck to race against his son on special occasions. "There are five big track races that I have to run next year before he's eligible," Joe Nemechek said. "He'll take over once he's 18 and he'll run them all. We're desperately trying to find more sponsorship dollars and with more dollars comes the opportunity to keep this truck running full-time and maybe get us a second one for me to run on special occasions."(Popular Speed)(11-15-2014)
Championship Fast Facts:
Driver Champion: Matt Crafton
Team: # 88 Menards Toyota
Matt Crafton won his second consecutive NASCAR Camping World Truck Series championship. He is the first driver in series history to win back-to-back championships (2013-2014).
Crafton is the 13th different driver to win the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series championship, and the fourth to win multiple series titles. 2013 marked Crafton's 15th year competing in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. He leads the series in consecutive starts with 337.
Crafton finished 21 points ahead of second-place Ryan Blaney.
Crafton finished the 2014 season with two wins, 13 top fives, 17 top 10s, and an average finish of 7.0.
Crafton's 2014 Season-To-Date Loop Data: Driver Rating (106.0); Average Running Position (6.504).
Owner: Duke Thorson, ThorSport Racing
This is ThorSport Racing's second NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver championship.
Owners Duke and Rhonda Thorson fielded their first truck in the series with driver Terry Cook at the Milwaukee Mile on July 6, 1996. ThorSport Racing has fielded at least one truck in 431 races, a run of 413 consecutive starts beginning at Walt Disney World Speedway in January 1998 - both are series records.
ThorSport Racing fielded one other full-time truck this season - the No. 98 driven by Johnny Sauter. Sauter finished the season fourth in the standings. He posted one win, eight top fives and 16 top 10s in 2014.
Crew Chief Champion: Carl Joiner Jr.
This is Carl Joiner Jr.'s second career NASCAR Camping World Truck Series championship. Joiner becomes the fourth all-time NCWTS crew chief with multiple championships joining Dennis Conner (1997, '99, '01); MikeHillman Jr. (2006, '10); and Rick Ren (2007, '09).
Joiner is the first NASCAR Camping World Truck Series crew chief to win consecutive series titles.
Owner Champion: Kyle Busch, Kyle Busch Motorsports
This is Kyle Busch Motorsport's second-consecutive and third all-time NASCAR Camping World Truck Series owner championship. Kyle Busch Motorsports' previous owner championships were in 2010 and 2013 - KBM's No. 51 tied ThorSport Racing's No. 88 in owner points in 2013 but was awarded the championship due the tiebreaker (wins).
Two drivers competed in the No. 51 Toyota this season (Kyle Busch, 10 starts and Erik Jones, 12 starts)
KBM is the second team in NCWTS history to win back-to-back championships (Xpress Motorsports, 2002-03).The team's third title ties Hendrick Motorsports and Kevin Harvick Inc. for most all-time.
Boston to join KBM in 2015 UPDATE: Motorsport.com has learned that Justin Boston will move up into the NASCAR national touring divisions come 2015. Boston has spent the last two seasons in ARCA, piloting a car owned by Venturini Motorsports. In 2014, he won for the first time at Toledo. Kyle Busch has hired the young talent to drive a third entry in the Camping World Truck Series next season, alongside fellow young guns Darrell Wallace Jr. and Erik Jones. He will have backing from Zloop in this new venture. Oddly enough, the 24-year-old racer will be the 'veteran' driver of the trio, in terms of age. He made his Truck debut earlier this year at Bristol, finishing 30th after getting caught up in a wreck. He impressed in two starts for Gibbs at the Nationwide level though, placing inside the top 12 in both races. Kyle Busch Motorsports has dominated the Truck circuit in 2014, which is to be expected when Kyle gets behind the wheel. However, Jones and Wallace have each won three races this season as well. The team is eying it's second consecutive owner's title this weekend, hoping to hold off ThorSport and win it all tonight.(Motorsport.com)(11-14-2014)
UPDATE: Kyle Busch Motorsports announced today the additions of Justin Boston and Matt Tifft to the team's driver lineup for the 2015 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season. Boston will run a full-time schedule competing for the Sunoco Rookie of the Year Award, while Tifft will run a six-race schedule and share the driving duties behind the wheel of his Tundra with KBM owner-driver Kyle Busch and Joe Gibbs Racing driver Daniel Suarez competing for the Truck Series Owner's Championship.
Boston completed his second full-time season in the ARCA Racing Series in 2014, finishing fifth in the championship standings and collecting wins at Toledo Speedway in May and Madison International Speedway in August. In addition to his two wins, he collected three poles, 241 laps led, seven top-five and 13 top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 10.6 across 20 starts this year. Overall in two seasons of ARCA action, the Maryland native has posted two wins, five poles, 15 top-five and 29 top-10 finishes across 41 starts and finished inside the top-five in the championship standings both years. The 25-year-old also made two NASCAR Nationwide Series starts for Joe Gibbs Racing in 2014, finishing ninth in his series debut at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta and following it up with a 12th-place finish at Dover International Speedway. He made one Truck Series start this season, but was relegated to a 30th-place finish at Bristol Motor Speedway getting caught up in a late-race accident.
Tifft has made 12 ARCA Racing Series starts the last two seasons, registering six top-five and eight top-10 finishes. The Ohio native registered a career-best runner-up finish in this year's September event at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta. In addition to his time in the ARCA Racing Series, the 18-year-old has competed in the NASCAR K&N East and West Series, posting one top-five and nine top-10 finishes across 24 starts. The University of North Carolina at Charlotte freshman has competed in two of the last three Truck Series races this season, including an eighth-place finish at Martinsville Speedway in September, and is entered in the series finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway this weekend.
Announcements on truck numbers, sponsors and crew chiefs for both drivers are forthcoming. (Kyle Busch Motorsports)(11-14-2014)