NXS, NCWTS Champs, top rookies honored at banquet: One night after Kyle Busch took a bow as a first-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion, he helped to toast the youngster who brought him his first driver's title as a team owner. With milk.
On a night for honoring new champions, Erik Jones and Chris Buescher took center stage at the NASCAR XFINITY and Camping World Truck Series Awards at the Diplomat Resort and Spa. For Buescher, it marked the 23-year-old's first national series championship in just his second full year in the series. For Jones, the title march coincided with a Sunoco Rookie of the Year campaign. Busch was missing from Monday night's awards, occupied with the media duties and obligations that came with winning his first premier series title at Homestead-Miami Speedway. His wife, Samantha, attended on behalf of Kyle Busch Motorsports, which claimed the team owners' title for the third straight year. With Busch making the rounds with the Sprint Cup trophy, Ed Laukes, Toyota's vice president of marketing communications and motorsports, provided an assist in toasting Jones' stellar season. But the raised glass for the 19-year-old was full of milk, a half-joking homage to Dale Earnhardt's toast of first-time champion Jeff Gordon in 1995.
"I wish Kyle would've been there to see his creation come to life, I guess you'd say," said Jones, who won three races and five pole positions in his first full season. "I think he had a good excuse to miss it, but that was funny. That's definitely a Kyle thing he would do, especially to me."
Buescher's coronation on the XFINITY tour came after a two-win season with hallmark consistency -- 20 top-10s in 33 races. Monday night, he took his place with his Roush Fenway Racing team at the head table, saying that he showed a slight case of nerves in the Great Hall's gala setting. Jitters notwithstanding, the experience capped a stellar 48-hour period full of well-wishes from his peers. "The coolest thing is just having so many different people come up and say congratulations and we've seen what you've done to work for this and it's awesome to see you here," Buescher said. "Stuff like that means that all those years working up to this point were well worth it. It's been countless hours, many all-nighters to make sure we could get to the next ARCA race at night. We've done so many things to try and get to this point, and to finally be here, it's special. It's very humbling."
Chase Elliott, the driver who preceded Buescher as series champion, took Most Popular Driver honors with him as he transitions to the Sprint Cup Series next year, replacing Jeff Gordon in the Hendrick Motorsports #24 Chevrolet. NASCAR Next driver John Hunter Nemechek was voted Most Popular Driver in the Camping World Truck Series. Daniel Suarez, another product of the NASCAR Next program, was named Sunoco Rookie of the Year in the XFINITY Series.(NASCAR.com)(Photo: NASCAR via Getty Images)(11-24-2015)
AND: The awards banquet will air on NBCSN at 7pm/et Sunday, Nov. 29.
Jones Crowned Youngest Champion in Truck Series History: After posting a sixth-place finish in Friday night's NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season finale at Homestead-Miami (Fla.) Speedway, 19-year-old Erik Jones finished the season 15 points ahead of Tyler Reddick and was crowned the youngest champion in series history. Jones also became the first driver in Truck Series history to capture the Rookie of the Year award and a championship in the same season and in the process delivered Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM) its first-ever Driver's Championship and the organization's record-breaking fourth overall and third consecutive Owner's Championship.
Over the course of the Truck Series' 23-race season, Jones collected three wins (Iowa Speedway, Canadian Tire Motorsports Park and Texas Motor Speedway), five poles, 925 laps led, 11 top-five and 20 top-10 finishes. After the eighth race of the season at Gateway Motorsports Park in June, the Michigan native found himself fourth in points, 33 behind Matt Crafton, but rallied back with 15 consecutive top-10 finishes to close out the season, including two of his three wins.
"I can't think of a better way to repay these guys and I can't think of a better way to thank Kyle (Busch, team owner) for all these years - just getting a Driver's Championship for him," Jones said. "He's wanted one since the company started and to bring it home for myself and for KBM (Kyle Busch Motorsports), you couldn't really ask for a better ending than that.
"I think a lot of it was just being with a great team here in Kyle Busch Motorsports and bringing great Tundras to the race track every week. And I think there were definitely times in the year when I didn't think we'd be able to do this and looking back and seeing the deficit we were in at some points and just being able to really to pull together and make this all happen here at the end of the year, man, it was just so, so special for everybody here. And to close off this run like this - I've had a great three years with these guys and I couldn't think of a better way to thank them."
"Well, it's just special to everyone at Kyle Busch Motorsports," Busch said when asked about the team's first-ever Driver's Championship. "I mean, we've been in existence for five seasons and this is obviously - six seasons, I guess - our fourth championship, but our first Driver's Championship and it means so much more to have the opportunity to help these younger drivers and to help these kids that are coming up through the ranks to succeed and be successful and to do that with Kyle Busch Motorsports and Toyota.
There's nothing greater than to have that feeling and to build that company from the ground up from nothing and to take it to what it is today. It's a true honor for Samantha (Busch, wife) and I to be able to accept the Owner's Championship, but also our first Driver's Championship with Erik Jones this weekend and this team. I mean, it takes all these people back here plus everyone at home back at the shop - chassis shop, body shop, everybody. We do all of our own stuff which is even more impressive that we're able to accomplish the things that we do here."(Kyle Busch Motorsports)(Photo: NASCAR via Getty Images)(11-22-2015)
Championship Fast Facts:
Driver Champion: Erik Jones:
· Erik Jones won his first NASCAR Camping World Truck Series championship; becoming the youngest champion in series history at the age of 19 years, 5 months, 21 days.
· Jones is the 14th different driver to win the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series championship.
· Jones finished 15 points ahead of second-place Tyler Reddick.
· Jones finished the 2015 season with three wins, 11 top fives, 20 top 10s and five poles.
· Jones' 2015 Season-To-Date Loop Data: Driver Rating (117.9); Average Running Position (4.9).
Owner Champion: Kyle Busch, Kyle Busch Motorsports:
· This is Kyle Busch Motorsport's third-consecutive and fourth all-time NASCAR Camping World Truck Series owner championship. · Kyle Busch Motorsports' previous owner championships were in 2010, 2013 and 2014 -KBM's No. 51 tied ThorSport Racing's No. 88 in owner points in 2013 but was awarded the championship due the tiebreaker (wins).
· KBM is the first team in NCWTS history to win three consecutive owner championships.
· Kyle Busch Motorsports now has the most owner titles in the NCWTS with four.
Crew Chief Champion: Ryan Fugle:
· This is Ryan Fugle's first career NASCAR Camping World Truck Series championship.
· Fugle has nine career NASCAR Camping World Truck Series victories with two drivers - Kyle Busch (five) and Erik Jones (four).
(NASCAR Statistics) (11-20-2015)
Crafton wins Homestead, Jones wins championship: #88-Matt Crafton dominated the season-ending Ford EcoBoost 200 Camping World Truck Series race on Friday night, leading 93 of the event's 134 laps. He started the day off by earning his series-leading fourth pole of the season, and followed that up with his sixth win.
#4-Erik Jones needed to finish 15th or better to win the championship, had a quiet night, and finished sixth to become the youngest champion in series history.
#8-John Hunter Nemechek finished second to Crafton, leading 24 laps throughout the night. #19-Tyler Reddick finished second to Jones in the championship points, ended the night in third. He was followed by: #11-Ben Kennedy, #17-Timothy Peters, #4-Jones, #98-Johnny Sauter, in his final ride with ThorSport Racing, #14-Daniel Hemric, #13-Cameron Hayley, and #05-John Wes Townley in the top-10.
There were 4 caution flags for 18 laps and 14 lead changes among 6 leaders.
Complete results are on the Homestead race results page (pdf). (11-20-2015)
Homestead Race Fast Facts:
Matt Crafton won the 20th Annual Ford EcoBoost 200, his 11th victory in 361 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races.
This is his sixth victory and 18th top-10 finish in 2015.
This is his first victory and seventh top-10 finish in 15 races at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
John H. Nemechek (second) posted his first top-10 finish in his first start at Homestead-Miami Speedway. It is his 10th top-10 finish in 2015.
Tyler Reddick (third) posted his second top-10 finish in two races at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
John H. Nemechek (second) was the highest finishing rookie.
Erik Jones # leads the point standings by 15 points over Tyler Reddick.
(NASCAR Statistics) (11-20-2015)
Driver standings following Homestead:
1) #4-Erik Jones, 899
2) #19-Tyler Reddick, 884, -15
3) )#88-Matt Crafton, 877, -22
4) #98-Johnny Sauter, 809, -90
5) #17-Timothy Peters, 804, -95
6) #13-Cameron Hayley, 766, -133
7) #14-Daniel Hemric, 733, -166
8) #05-John Wes Townley, 730, -169
9) #11-Ben Kennedy, 690, -209
10) #23-Spencer Gallagher, 677, -222
See complete standings on the driver standings page (pdf) and the final owner standings (pdf).(11-20-2015)
Finale gets slight ratings boost: The NASCAR Truck Series finale from Homestead (FL) had a 0.4 final rating and 647,000 viewers on Fox Sports 1 Friday night, up a tick in ratings and 29% in viewership from last year (0.3, 501K) but down a tick and 19%, respectively, from 2013 (0.5, 800K). (via TV Media Insights).(Sports Media Watch))(11-24-2015)
Richmond, Red Horse part ways UPDATE 2: Marcus Richmond posted on his Twitter on Thursday night that despite picking up the win last week in Phoenix, he would not be ending the season as crew chief on the #17 of Timothy Peters. "Really hate I have to miss closing out the season with Timothy Peters. Go get 'em, bud! In exchange, looking forward to what my future holds," he tweeted. The team has not announced who will guide the team in Homestead, nor their 2016 plans.(11-19-2015)
UPDATE: Butch Hylton served as crew chief for Peters in Homestead, leading him to a fifth place finish. Richmond is rumored to be joining GMS Racing and Johnny Sauter.(11-21-2015)
UPDATE 2:GMS Racing's newest driver will have an experienced crew chief next season. Johnny Sauter said during the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and NASCAR XFINITY Series banquet Monday night at The Diplomat in Hollywood, Fla. that Marcus Richmond will calls the shots for the veteran in 2016. Richmond departed Red Horse Racing and Timothy Peters early last week for an opportunity to work with Sauter and Maurice Gallagher next season. "We've already got things set in motion (at GMS) as far as people and personnel," said Sauter. "We're still got a couple guys that we're trying to assemble to make it what we want it to be. Obviously, Marcus Richmond is going to come over and be the crew chief and he's got some key people that he thinks are going to help the program."(Catchfence.com))(11-24-2015)
Hayley among those uncertain of 2016 plans following season-finale: Canadian Cameron Hayley took to his Facebook page following the Ford EcoBoost 200 thanking his ThorSport Racing team for the season and announcing that he is unsure of his 2016 plans. "Lived my dream and had the time of my life this year. Thank you to all my #13 guys and everyone at ThorSport for giving me amazing trucks week in and week out. I'm not sure what my future holds but I do know that whatever I do I will always remember this great year. Thank you to all that have helped me live my dream this year," he wrote. ThorSport has not yet announced their 2016 driver lineup. Johnny Sauter ran his last race with the #98 team truck in Homestead. He is leaving the team after seven seasons to join GMS Racing in 2016.(11-21-2015)
Ackerman replaces Huffman as crew chief UPDATE: Tom Ackerman will replace Shane Huffman atop the pit box for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. The #33 GMS Racing team has made a change in crew chiefs following the departure of Huffman, who served in that role for the entire season and parts of 2014. Huffman started his racing career behind the wheel, first running late models and winning the 2003 Pro Cup title before advancing into NASCAR's Xfinity Series with JR Motorsports in 2006. He transitioned to the pit box in 2007 at Rusty Wallace Racing and then oversaw Brandon Jones' effort in 2014 on the K&N Pro Series Tour and a limited ARCA run. Jones finished fourth in the NKNPS standings. This season Huffman guided the 18-year-old driver's 16-race truck schedule. Jones posted four top fives and eight top 10s in 16 starts. However, Huffman earned his first Truck series win as a crew chief with Austin Dillon behind the wheel at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in September from the pole. Austin's younger brother Ty Dillon and Brandon Jones have also piloted that truck this year. After finishing second at Talladega, GMS was handed a P4 level penalty due an infraction found in pre-qualifying inspection. Huffman was fined $10,000 and suspended for the next three races, but due to a subsequent appeal, he was granted a one week deferment. The three-member appeals panel reduced the original three-race suspension on Huffman from three races to two, citing a delay in the originally scheduled appeals hearing. As a result, Huffman was suspended for the final two truck races at Phoenix and Homestead, but his suspension will not carry over to 2016. The team also lost 25 driver and owner points. Jones will be in the driver's seat this weekend, working with Ackerman (who also replaced Huffman at Phoenix). Ackerman has spent 50 CWTS race atop the pit box for several drivers including Ted Musgrave.(Motorsport.com)(11-19-2015)
UPDATE: Catchfence.com has learned that Shane Huffman, who recently departed the role as crew chief at GMS Racing has taken a new job with a Toyota truck team and could be expected to be announced as (Marcus) Richmond's replacement (at Red Horse Racing) in the coming weeks. The spokesperson added the team didn't have anything to announce for 2016 at this time. (Catchfence.com)(11-21-2015)
Theriault returns at Homestead: Brad Keselowski Racing announced today that Austin Theriault has been medically cleared by NASCAR and will drive the #29 Cooper Standard Ford F-150 in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race Nov. 20 at Homestead-Miami (Fla.) Speedway. The 21-year old native of Fort Kent, Maine is eager to return to the driver's seat. "I'm looking forward to getting back in the Cooper Standard Ford F-150 and being fast at Homestead," Theriault said. "The past week, and especially the past couple of days, make me feel really confident heading into this weekend. I've been working very hard and have been focused on getting back in the truck." Earlier this season Theriault scored a fourth place finish in the season opening race at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway in February. He backed that up with a strong performance at Texas Motor Speedway in June. Theriault has two top fives and four top 10 finishes in eight NCWTS starts in 2015.(Brad Keselowski Racing)(11-19-2015)
Homestead brings mixed emotions for Nemecheks: John Hunter Nemechek was 5 months old and in diapers when he made his first appearance at the Homestead-Miami Speedway's Victory Lane. It was Nov. 9, 1997, and his father, Joe, a sentimental favorite with a very heavy heart, had just won the most emotional race of his career as the crowd of 55,000 got choked up and roared. Joe's younger brother, John - an aspiring truck racer for whom that baby in diapers was named - had died eight months earlier at age 27 from head injuries sustained in a crash on that very Homestead track. Joe's wife, Andrea, was six months' pregnant at the time, and they decided the baby would be named after the uncle he never met. That baby is 18 years old now, an accomplished truck racer, and Friday he will pay tribute to his late uncle and namesake by racing a #8 Chevy Silverado - his uncle's car number - in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series at the Homestead track. It will be his first race on that track, which was reconfigured to a true oval with a six-degree banking after his uncle's death to reduce the chances for that type of crash. "It's very special for me to carry his name on the #8 Chevrolet this weekend going to Homestead,'' said John Hunter, as he is best known. "He's always in the back of our minds, he's always cheering us on up there. He's still around.''Joe Nemechek, owner of the NEMCO Motorsports team his son races with, said Homestead is "a tough place'' for his family to go, but he loves the track, has had great success there and is looking forward to another great weekend watching his son behind the wheel. "The main thing is, I lost my best friend,'' the elder Nemechek said of his brother. "I think about him all the time. He'd be very happy to see how John Hunter is doing.''(Miami Herald)(11-19-2015)
FOX sets broadcast crew, Welch to call truck races in 2016: As NASCAR prepares to crown its national series champions this weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway, FOX NASCAR already has begun preparations for the 2016 season, announcing its full broadcaster lineup for next year, including a new NASCAR Sprint Cup Series team featuring veteran play-by-play announcer Mike Joy and analysts Darrell Waltrip, together for their 16th season, and newcomer and four-time champion Jeff Gordon, plus new NASCAR Camping World Truck Series play-by-play announcer Vince Welch. For the 14th consecutive year, FS1 offers exclusive coverage of the entire NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season. Welch, longtime pit reporter covering the Cup and XFINITY Series, moves into the Truck Series play-by-play role fulltime in 2016 with veteran analysts Phil Parsons and Michael Waltrip. Welch, who also calls play-by-play for select FOX Sports college basketball games this season, pitched in to call Truck Series races on FS1 in 2015, as well as select NASCAR XFINITY Series races prior to joining FOX. Sadler leads pit road reporting with Yocum and Kaitlyn Vincie. FS1 telecasts 22 of the series' 23 races live in 2016, while FOX broadcasts the October Talladega race. In addition, FOX Sports offers a dedicated 30-minute prerace show immediately prior to each NASCAR XFINITY Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race. John Roberts has the honors for "NCWTS Setup" leading into all Truck Series races with insight from two-time series champion Todd Bodine and feature reports from Ray Dunlap.(FOX Sports)(11-18-2015)
Toyota could clinch Manufacturers' title in Phoenix UPDATE: If the top-finishing Toyota finishes 14th or better in Friday's race at Phoenix, Toyota will capture its eighth Manufacturers' Championship, tying Chevrolet for the most in NASCAR Camping World Truck Series history. The Manufacturers' Championship would also be Toyota's third consecutive title.(NASCAR)(11-11-2015)
UPDATE: Toyota won its third consecutive NASCAR Camping World Truck Series manufacturers' championship following Timothy Peters' victory at Phoenix International Raceway. Toyota now boasts eight manufacturers' titles - tied with Chevrolet for the series record. On the season, Toyota has won 13 races with Matt Crafton (5), Erik Jones (3), Kyle Busch (2) and Christopher Bell (1). Toyota has won four driver championships - Todd Bodine (2006), Johnny Benson (2008), Matt Crafton (2013-14) - and can capture a fifth with Erik Jones in Friday's Ford EcoBoost 200 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.(NASCAR)(11-18-2015)
NASCAR considering Chase scenario for trucks: NASCAR acknowledged it's contemplating a playoff-type system similar to the Chase for the ultra-competitive Truck tour. One scenario that's been discussed would feature eight contenders in a seven-race elimination where two drivers are knocked out after each three-race segment with the four teams battling for the title at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Twenty-one points currently separate third-place Tyler Reddick from series points leader Erik Jones in the truck standings. Defending truck champion Matt Crafton trails Jones by 17 points as he attempts to become the first driver to win three consecutive titles. This season the truck series has enjoyed 13 different winners in the first 21 events. The proposed seven-race Chase would occupy roughly 30 percent of the schedule - a greater portion than the Chase for the Sprint Cup consumes (27.78 percent).(Motorsport.com)(11-8-2015)
UPDATE: NASCAR Executive Vice President and Chief Racing Development Officer Steve O'Donnell confirmed Monday on SiriusXM that the sanctioning body is having "conversations in the garage" about the possibility of a Chase-style format in the NASCAR XFINITY Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. A post from the NASCAR Fan Council circulated on social media late last week in which those on the council were asked for feedback on an XFINITY Series-specific idea in which 12 drivers would advance to a seven-race postseason. "We certainly have talked to a lot of people who would have a keen interest if we were to go that route," O'Donnell said on SiriusXM. "Getting their feedback, what do they think of the concept, how they think it plays out in the Sprint Cup Series and how that would work both at the XFINITY and Truck level. We're going to continue to do that in Miami. "If we do make any changes, obviously they would come in the offseason. I would confirm we are having those discussions in the industry. If we continue to see some positives, that may be a direction we choose to go to."
O'Donnell also addressed reports that the sanctioning body may consider limiting the number of starts a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver makes in the other two national series."At no time have we gone out and said, 'Hey, we're looking to ban Cup drivers,' " he said. "I think what we have looked at is, how does it play out in the competitive landscape of each series? A lot of it has to do with, are we enabling the young drivers to showcase their talents and giving them the best opportunity to move up the ranks, if they have the ability to do so? "There's a lot of different opinions. We are looking at some things, partly around if you go to a different championship format, could you look at some of those events potentially as just XFINITY or Truck drivers only. Not anywhere near making a call on that yet, but we certainly hear the fans. I'd say (fans) are more vocal now in terms of Cup drivers not participating as much as they are."(NASCAR.com)(11-18-2015)
Kenseth, Hattori building toward 2016: Ross Kenseth will attempt to make his second NASCAR Camping World Truck Series start on Friday at Homestead-Miami Speedway in the #18 Green Brave/Saitama Toyopet Toyota Tundra for Hattori Racing Enterprises (HRE). Kenseth made his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series debut with HRE at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway on October 31, where he finished 17th in what was the team's first NASCAR national touring series race of 2015. Friday's race will mark Kenseth's fourth NASCAR start of the season. The son of 2003 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champion Matt Kenseth made his NASCAR debut in the June XFINITY Series race at Chicagoland Speedway when Kenseth, driving for Joe Gibbs Racing, qualified second and finished sixth. "We are trying to build something for 2016 and performing well this weekend will only help that," said Shigeaki Hattori, owner of HRE and the #18 truck.(Fuel SMG)(11-18-2015)
Crafton to pass Hornaday in career starts: Although a third-consecutive NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) driver's championship title is unlikely for Matt Crafton, driver of the #88 Ideal Door/Menards Toyota Tundra in 2015, the ThorSport Racing driver can characterize his season as a success. Entering the final race of the 2015 season, Crafton has claimed a season-high three poles (Michigan International Speedway, Las Vegas Motor Speedway, and Texas Motor Speedway), led a career-high 678 laps, and earned a season-best five wins (Atlanta Motor Speedway, Kansas Speedway, Texas Motor Speedway, Kentucky Speedway, and Martinsville Speedway). In fact, Crafton has earned half of his 10 career wins in 2015. In addition to his success in 2015, Crafton will once again make history in Friday night's NCWTS 200 at Homestead-Miami (FL) Speedway. The two-time and defending series champion, has spent 15 full-time seasons in the NCWTS to date, and will make his 361st career start in the series Friday night, passing four-time NCWTS champion, Ron Hornaday, Jr., in career starts. Currently, both Crafton and Hornaday are tied with 360 starts. Of the 360 starts that Crafton has made since 2000, the Tulare, California native has made 14 starts at Homestead, site of Friday night's NCWTS season finale. Although Crafton is still looking for his first win at the 1.5-mile oval, a type of track the Menards driver has dominated on in 2015, the ThorSport Racing diver has lead 38 laps en route to two two-five and six top-10 finishes, with a track-best start of second (2004), and a track-best finish of second (2009). Furthermore, among active series drivers, Crafton has the most starts (14), is tied for the most top-five finishes (2), has the most top-10 finishes (6), has completed the most laps (1917), and has the most lead lap finishes (10).(ThorSport Racing)(11-17-2015)
Little hopes to continue truck effort in 2016: Jesse Little, a member of the 2015 NASCAR Next class, makes his final NASCAR Camping World Truck Series start of the 2015 season with the running of the Ford Ecoboost 200 at Homestead Miami Speedway. Little will be back behind the wheel of his #97 Toyota Tundra in an alliance with ThorSport Racing and will continue to have support from Protect The Harvest, an organization started by Lucas Oil founder, Forrest Lucas. With one race left in the season, Little has been planning for 2016. "We've got our NASCAR Camping World Truck Series team heading in the right direction and a good run in Homestead will keep the attention on what we're capable of doing with solid support from our supporters," he said. "We're working on plans for 2016 and would like to run the entire season and each race helps to build towards that goal. Coming out of Homestead with a solid finish will help garner the sponsorship support we need to be ready for the 2016 season that's for sure."(Team Little Racing)(11-17-2015)
GMS gets penalty following Talladega UPDATE 2: The #33 team has been penalized for an infraction that occurred during pre-qualifying inspection on Oct. 23. This is a P4 level penalty (Sections 18.104.22.168; 20.20.a; 20.4.f; P4, 22.214.171.124. b&d, Penalty Options; P4, 126.96.36.199.1 d&f, Penalty Examples). Crew chief Shane Huffman has been fined $10,000, suspended for the next three NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Championship events, plus any non-championship races or special events which might occur during that period, and placed on NASCAR probation for a six-month period following the issuance of the penalty. The team has also been assessed with the loss of 25 championship driver (Brandon Jones) and 25 championship owner (Maurice Gallagher Jr.) points.(NASCAR)(10-28-2015)
UPDATE: Director of Competition Mike Beam's response to penalties levied against alleged infractions made at Talladega Superspeedway:
"As a stand-alone team in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) we respect NASCAR's efforts to maintain a level playing field for all teams and competitors. However, we feel that it is in the best interest of our organization, partners and team personnel to appeal NASCAR's decision. GMS Racing will have no further public comment until the process is completed."(GMS Racing)(10-29-2015)
UPDATE 2: The National Motorsports Appeals Panel today heard and considered the appeal of a P4 level penalty issued on Oct. 28 to Shane Huffman (crew chief), Brandon Jones (driver) and Maurice Gallagher Jr. (owner) relative to the #33 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series team at Talladega Superspeedway. The penalty concerns the following sections in the 2015 NASCAR Rule Book: Sections 188.8.131.52; 20.20.a; 20.4.f; P4, 184.108.40.206. b&d, Penalty Options; P4, 220.127.116.11.1 d&f, Penalty Examples. The original penalty assessed included: Huffman was fined $10,000, suspended for the next three NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Championship events, plus any non-championship races or special events which might occur during that period, and placed on NASCAR probation for a six-month period following the issuance of the penalty. Jones and Gallagher Jr. were also assessed with the loss of 25 championship driver and 25 championship owner points, respectively. Upon hearing the testimony, the decisions of the National Motorsports Appeals Panel are:
The Appellants violated the Rule or Rules set forth in the Penalty Notice
The Panel finds that the suspension portion of the Penalty for the crew chief should not last beyond the current season in this special case because of the delay in the originally scheduled hearing. All other portions of the original Penalty as levied by NASCAR (e.g.; owner points; driver points; fine; probation) are affirmed and upheld.
The Appellants have the right to appeal the decision of the National Motorsports Appeals Panel to the National Motorsports Final Appeals Officer in accordance with Section 15 of the NASCAR Rule Book.(NASCAR)(11-10-2014)
2016 Truck Series schedule released: NASCAR announced the 2016 schedule for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, which features 21 tracks hosting 23 events in the U.S. and Canada. As with the previously announced NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and NASCAR XFINITY Series schedules, agreements have also been reached with the tracks to host the Camping World Truck Series through 2020.
Iowa Speedway will host its first NASCAR national series companion weekend, with the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series joining the NASCAR XFINITY Series on June 18-19. Other changes for 2016 are:
The Dover International Speedway event moves two weekends earlier in the schedule (May 13).
The first visit to Texas Motor Speedway moves one week later to June 10.
The Gateway Motorsports Park event moves two weekends later in the schedule to June 25.
The Canadian Tire Motorsport Park event returns to the Sunday of Labor Day (U.S.) weekend, on Sept. 4.
The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series kicks off the 2016 season during Daytona Speedweeks, as the iconic track welcomes fans to experience its $400 million redevelopment project, DAYTONA Rising. After Daytona, the trucks will race at Atlanta Motor Speedway in a double-header with the NASCAR XFINITY Series for the second consecutive season. Two popular Wednesday night events - at Eldora Speedway (July 20) and Bristol (Aug. 17) - also return to the schedule for 2016.
The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series closes the 2016 season with five events in five weekends, including three triple-header weekends with the NASCAR Sprint Cup and NASCAR XFINITY Series at Texas Motor Speedway, Phoenix International Raceway, and Homestead-Miami Speedway. FOX Sports will provide broadcast coverage of every race event in the 2016 NASCAR Camping World Truck season.(NASCAR)(See the schedule on the 2016 Camping World Truck Series schedule page)(11-10-2015)
Due to injury, sponsors, Theriault uncertain of racing return: Austin Theriault released a statement on his Facebook page that he is uncertain of his racing future due to lack of sponsorship, as he continues to recover from injuries sustained at Las Vegas Motor Speedway last month.
"It's been an up and down month of healing. However, it is even harder sitting on the sidelines, waiting to get back in the Truck. Unfortunately I won't be competing this weekend at Texas, or Phoenix, however the doctors are upbeat about Homestead. Though the season's not over, we've had a great year. I remain grateful for the opportunity to drive the #29 this year. Working with everyone at BKR has been immensely rewarding, both professionally and personally.
I am certain that the injury will not effect my plans for 2016. Unfortunately, due to lack of sponsorship, I don't have any full time opportunities. Staying positive is one of the lessons I've learned in life so far and especially the past few weeks. So I remain encouraged that we will partner with the right sponsors, and the right racing opportunities will open up." (Austin Theriault Racing Facebook)(11-4-2015)
Reddick returns, Hemric joins BKR for 2016: Brad Keselowski Racing announced its full-time driver lineup in the 2016 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. Tyler Reddick will pilot the #29 Cooper Standard Ford F-150 while Daniel Hemric joins the organization as the driver for the #19 Ford F-150 with support from partners California Clean Power and Cequent (a Horizon Global company). Keselowski added that his organization would like to field a third team with a variety of drivers behind the wheel and his company is hard at work in an effort to put a program together. Tyler Reddick, 19, will return for his second full-time season at Brad Keselowski Racing in 2016 moving from behind the wheel of the Team's #19 Ford F-150 to the #29 Ford F-150 with primary sponsorship from Cooper Standard and the company's Careers For Veterans program. The 2015 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) season has been a breakout year for Reddick, who scored his first career win in the season-opening NextEra Energy Resources 250 at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway. His second victory came just five races later at Dover (Del.) International Speedway. Reddick has been atop the NCWTS championship standings or ranked third or higher after every race. Hemric, 24, said it is an honor to drive for Keselowski and that finalizing his plans for the upcoming season is a weight lifted off his shoulders. The 2015 season was Hemric's first in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. He has racked up four top fives and 12 top 10 finishes and is currently seventh in the series championship standings. His best finish this season is fourth-place (three times, most recently on the road course at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada).(Brad Keselowski Racing)(11-3-2015)
Young drivers to round out KBM's 2016 lineup UPDATE: Kyle Busch Motorsports' 2016 driver lineup in the Camping World Truck Series looks to feature several successful up-and-comers in NASCAR competition. Christopher Bell, a talented dirt track racer who won the Truck race at iconic Eldora Speedway earlier this season, will run fulltime in 2016 for KBM, multiple sources confirmed to Motorsport.com. Immediately after that victory, Toyota Racing Development President David Wilson expressed hope Bell would "draft" in the footsteps of another Toyota talent, Erik Jones, and join KBM. Bell, the 2013 USAC National Midget champion, has accumulated 15 wins in midget and Late Model races this season in addition to his victory at Eldora. Joining Bell at KBM next season with be newly-crowned NASCAR K&N Pro Series East champion William Byron, who will drive several races in KBM's #51 Toyota, sources said. Byron, who will turn 18 years old next month, is a student at Charlotte (N.C.) Country Day School. He won four races on his way to the K&N Pro Series East title this season driving for HScott Motosports with Justin Marks. Byron has only been racing for three years, starting with Legends cars and winning a national title in that series in 2013. He has also driven Late Models for JR Motorsports.Cody Coughlin, a 19-year-old Joe Gibbs Racing development driver, is also expected to compete in the Truck series in 2016 with KBM, sources said. Coughlin has run a pair of Truck races this season - one for Venturini Motorsports and one for KBM. He finished 20th in both races.(Motorsport.com)(10-29-2015)
UPDATE: Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM) announced the 2016 driver lineup for its three-team operation in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. Christopher Bell and William Byron will each compete full-time, while Cody Coughlin and Daniel Suarez will share the seat of the remaining entry, each competing in at least 10 races. Additionally, the team announced that Byron will make his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series debut Nov. 13 in a fourth KBM entry at Phoenix (Ariz.) International Raceway.
Bell, the 2013 USAC National Midget champion continues to be a force to be reckoned with on dirt, where he has scored six POWRI Midget wins, two USAC National Midget wins, one USAC Silver Crown win and also collected his second career World of Outlaws Sprint Car victory this season. Bell's Tundra will carry primary sponsorship from JBL, a division of HARMAN - the premier connected technologies company for automotive, consumer and enterprise markets.
Byron, a 17-year-old native of Charlotte, N.C., captured the 2015 NASCAR K&N Pro Series East Championship and Rookie of the Year honors after producing four wins, three poles, 740 laps led, five top-five and 11 top-10 finishes across 14 starts. He picked up a victory at Greenville (S.C.) Pickens Speedway in just his second career start, earned the championship lead after a runner-up finish at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway in the third race of the season and stayed at the top of the standings for the remainder of the season. The NASCAR Next product is currently in his senior year at Charlotte (N.C.) Country Day School and also is enrolled in the Liberty University Online Academy. Byron has had a busy 2015 schedule on the track as well, in addition to his full-time campaign in the K&N Pro Series East, he finished fifth in his lone start in the K&N Pro Series West, made two ARCA Racing Series starts - where he led a race-high 120 laps in his series debut at Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis before settling for a runner-up finish when the race was decided by fuel strategy. He also picked up a CARS Super Late Model Tour victory at Hickory Motor Speedway earlier this season and finished second in the Denny Hamlin Short Track Showdown at South Boston Speedway. Byron's Tundra will carry primary sponsorship from Liberty University, the largest private, nonprofit university in the nation, the largest university in Virginia, and the largest Christian university in the world.
Coughlin, a 20-year-old native of Delaware, Ohio, made a pair of Truck Series starts this season, including his KBM debut in August at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, where he was on the verge of a top-10 finish before a late-race accident. The Joe Gibbs Racing development driver's roots run deep in the motorsports world, as the Coughlin family has produced countless victories and numerous championships across various divisions of NHRA competition.
Suarez, a 23-year-old native of Monterrey, Mexico, has produced five top-five and eight top-10 finishes across nine Truck Series starts driving a partial schedule for KBM this season, highlighted by runner-up finishes at Dover (Del.) International Speedway in May and Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth in June. He also competes full-time in the NASCAR XFINITY Series for Joe Gibbs Racing, where he has compiled three poles, seven top-five and 15 top-10 finishes across 30 starts and leads the Rookie of the Year standings with three races remaining. A graduate of the NASCAR Next and NASCAR Drive for Diversity programs, Suarez honed his skills in the NASCAR Mexico Series, where he collected 10 wins, 13 poles, 25 top-five and 34 top-10 finishes across 58 career starts from 2011 to 2014, and the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East, where he produced three wins, 12 top-five and 22 top-10 finishes across 43 starts from 2011 to 2014. Suarez's Tundra will carry primary sponsorship from ARRIS, a world leader in entertainment and communications technology.
Announcements for Coughlin's sponsors as well as truck numbers and crew chiefs for all three teams are forthcoming.(Kyle Busch Motorsports)(10-29-2015)
Congratulations 2015 Champ Kyle Busch
(Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)