CLUB NOTES

One more makes 84: Jimmie Johnson currently sits tied for sixth with Hall of Famer Cale Yarborough on the NASCAR all-time wins list with 83. His next win will tie him with Bobby Allison and Darrel Waltrip, who are tied for fifth on the all-time win list.

Fit for a “King”: The familiar “Petty Blue” paint scheme is inspired by the iconic Chrysler Plymouth Petty raced to victory in the 1964 Daytona 500, which led to his first NASCAR Cup Series Championship. Together, Johnson and Carvana designed a car that mimics some of the most noteworthy details that made Petty’s car so timeless, including the chrome accents and white lettering. Adorned with the “Petty 75” logo, the Camry XSE also showcases the horsepower on the side of the hood, as was tradition in the earlier days of the sport.

Creed on board: Johnson will have the award-winning band Creed’s insignia in associate placement on the No. 84 Toyota Camry XSE. Creed is celebrating their forty-city North American tour, called the “Summer of ’99” Tour. Due to fan demand, the band has extended their tour with an additional twenty dates under the “Are You Ready Tour?” banner. Produced by Live Nation, the tour launches on July 17th and will run through December 5th.

More than a racer: The Erik Jones Foundation and AdventHealth have joined forces to donate a new book vending machine to Blue Lake Elementary School less than 30 minutes away from the track in Deland, Florida. This book vending machine will be used to encourage young students to pick up a book and become more involved in their studies. With “igniting children’s passion for reading” as a key pillar of the Erik Jones Foundation, Jones hopes that these book vending machine projects will be the catalyst in a lifetime of reading and achievement for young students.

Skincare in the Sunshine State: AdventHealth looks to promote whole-person care in the fan midway during Speedweeks, with a focus on skincare and sun protection. The Erik Jones Foundation will have a presence within the activation to distribute sun protection packages to fans. In addition, the Erik Jones Foundation will have a location at the “Toyota Beach” in the fan midway of Daytona International Speedway. Fans are encouraged to stop by both locations for sun protection tips to stay safe during the race week in the Sunshine State.

The Big Game: Jones and his wife Holly had the opportunity to knock off a bucket list item after heading to Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas for Super Bowl LVIII. Despite his hometown Detroit Lions losing to the 49ers in the conference championship, Jones couldn’t turn down a chance to go to “The Big Game.” Other ties to the game? LEGACY M.C. Co-owner Maury Gallagher who is the Chairman/CEO of Allegiant Airlines is also the Chair of the Super Bowl committee for Las Vegas.

Hidden gems: Jones will sport some important icons on his No. 43 AdventHealth Toyota Camry as he will represent the pillars of the Erik Jones Foundation. Located right above the rear wheel wells, fans will find a book representing early childhood literacy, a dog collar for animal welfare, and a ribbon to symbolize early cancer detection and care.

Guess who’s back: After spending the past three years “betting on himself” in the NASCAR Truck Series and NASCAR Xfinity Series, John Hunter Nemechek makes his regular-season return to the Cup Series. Joining him atop the pit box is a familiar name in Ben Beshore, who served as his Xfinity Series crew chief in 2023. The pair won seven NXS races last season and finished fourth in the championship standings.

JHN superspeedway stats: Sunday will be only Nemechek’s second career start in the DAYTONA 500, but he brings noteworthy superspeedway results to the table. Two of his three top-10 finishes in the Cup Series came at Talladega Superspeedway and he is a past NXS winner at Atlanta Motor Speedway. He has yet to compete at a drafting track in a NextGen car, however, so this week brings a new challenge.

Double duty: Saturday’s United Rentals 300 will see Nemechek back behind the wheel of the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 20 Pye-Barker GR Supra. Nemechek will make a total of 10 NASCAR Xfinity Series starts this year in addition to his Cup Series driving duties. The season opener will be televised on FS1 at 5:00 PM ET.

Welcoming new partners to the Club: Several new partnerships have been formed leading into the Club’s 2024 campaign. Dollar Tree and Family Dollar recently announced a 38-race, multi-year agreement in which at least one of the Club entrants will have each brand as a primary sponsor for every race this season. AdventHealth will be the primary race for nine events this season, six with Jones and three with Jimmie Johnson. Carvana returns for their fourth year as a partner of Johnson for three races. Through its relationship with Toyota, automotive tools industry leader Gearwrench has signed on to support the Club’s efforts. Pye-Barker, ROMCO, and grocery store brands, all, Dial, Persil, Snuggle, and BajaVida Beef Jerky have followed Nemechek to the Cup Series. Mobil 1 also extended its partnership with Toyota teams to include primary sponsorship of the No. 42 later in the year.

CLUB QUOTES

John Hunter Nemechek, Driver of the No. 42 Dollar Tree Toyota Camry XSE:

On starting out the season strong: “I feel like Daytona is a wildcard in itself starting off the year with our Super Bowl. It’s a huge race; the DAYTONA 500 is super historical, and we’re trying to get the best finish possible from a points standpoint. It would be huge to win and lock ourselves in, but you can put yourself behind quite a bit to start the year if you get caught up in a big one and don’t get any stage points. There’s a lot of emphasis on going there and running the best we can on the No. 42 Dollar Tree team.”

On his first superspeedway start in the NextGen Car: “I’m just gonna go rip it!”

Ben Beshore, Crew chief of the No. 42 Dollar Tree Toyota Camry XSE:

On the importance of manufacturer alliances at Daytona: “Working together is crucial just so we’re on the same page. I think we’ve seen a lot of the general strategy at the speedways is to pit with your manufacturer, and with us having some more numbers here, hopefully having three cars in the field added onto the previous six that Toyota has had, that should give us an equal playing field with Chevy and Ford in terms of numbers. I think Toyota does a really good job of communicating between the teams and getting everyone on the same page prior to the race.”

Erik Jones, Driver of the No. 43 AdventHealth Toyota Camry XSE:

On what makes someone a good driver at Daytona: “I think being a good driver at Daytona is a combination of having a car that is fast enough to do what you need it to do, knowing how the draft is going to go, how the runs are going to come at you, and where you need to be in position at the end of the day to have a shot to win. Making it to the end is important and tough as well at times, so it is a combination of both the car and how the draft works out for us.”

On the book vending machine project and the significance of the AdventHealth partnership: “The book vending machine has been pretty fun, not only because of the vending machine itself but also seeing tracks come on board and now sponsors with AdventHealth who is helping us get a vending machine to Blue Lake Elementary the week of Daytona. So, I have been having fun with it, reading is a huge pillar of our foundation, and it has grown to be bigger and bigger in our foundation throughout the last few years. The book vending machine has really expedited that process. It is super neat to have AdventHealth latch on to that, help us out with the Erik Jones Foundation, and hopefully continue to grow that as well.”

Dave Elenz, Crew chief of the No. 43 AdventHealthToyota Camry XSE:

On having a strong setup vs. making sure you have a consistent draft partner and pit strategy: “Set up is probably the most important aspect of Daytona, draft partners and pit strategy are obviously important, but when it comes down to the end of the race there are going to be guys that are out of the race and there are going to be a bunch of wrecks, so you need a car that is capable of being pushed and pushing without being tight or loose and causing that big wreck. I feel like car setup is probably our most important aspect going into Daytona.”

Jimmie Johnson, Driver of the No. 84 Carvana Toyota Camry XSE:

On driving through the tunnel for the first time to start Speedweeks: “Just driving through the tunnel at Daytona for the first time and entering the infield and the magnitude of the speedway is revealed – it just never gets old. Seeing all the campers and every getting set up for a week of racing never gets old for me. It’s a familiar feeling and its excitement and anticipation of what’s to come.”

On his superspeedway racing mentality: “Plate racing is such a different kind of race. For me, we will have a strategy going in but for the most part, you are just surviving stage by stage. I try not to let the nerves get to me and stay as chill as possible before we get in the car. Winning an event like the DAYTONA 500 is so important to everyone and for a driver’s career. The DAYTONA 500 champion is a title that stays with you forever, and to become a 500 champion enters you as a driver in the record books. There is just so much pride in accomplishing it.”

On Carvana honoring Richard Petty for the DAYTONA 500 livery: “My relationship with Richard, Kyle and the whole Petty family is so meaningful to me and my goal was to celebrate their enduring LEGACY with this design.”

Jason Burdett, Crew chief of the No. 84 Carvana Toyota Camry XSE:

On his first DAYTONA 500 with Jimmie Johnson: ”I’m excited to go to Daytona with Jimmie. When you set out as a crew chief one of your goals is always to win the DAYTONA 500. So to go down there as a crew chief with this opportunity to accomplish that with Jimmie is exciting. Not only does Jimmie drive he is a co-owner and all of this really means a lot to him. Once we get through the first part of the week the reality will set in on the opportunity in front of us so I’m looking forward to that.”

On qualifying for the DAYTONA 500: “As a crew chief you worry about all the things that can happen that are out of your control. We have a good car, TRD has great engines and everyone at LEGACY MOTOR CLUB has done a great job this off-season in giving us the resources we need to be able to go down there, put down a good lap, and lock ourselves into the DAYTONA 500. If we can do that Wednesday we can go learn on Thursday’s draft and not have the pressure to race our way in. The Carvana Toyota Camry XSE looks great and we will see where we net out Wednesday night in qualifying.”

Chris Hall, Director of Pit Crew Operations:

On building a team of pit crew athletes and their series debut at Daytona: “This offseason has been a lot of fun. It has been a challenge finding guys to come on board at LEGACY MOTOR CLUB, I feel like we got a bit of a late start there, but I think we ended up very fortunate in finding the caliber of athlete that we did. We have had a great offseason with some amazing partner announcements and just really riding high on the work ethic and momentum of our team. I am really excited for Speedweeks and what 2024 has for us.”

On what a successful day in Daytona looks like for the pit crew: “When I am thinking about Daytona and what a successful day looks like for us, obviously you want to keep your driver and team in contention, don’t make the big mistake. You have to take what the car gives you, it’s a race of attrition as we all know, so being there at the end is very important. That doesn’t matter if you are racing the car or pitting the car, you have to be there at the end to have a shot. So hopefully one of our three Toyotas can be there at the end.”

PETTY 75TH ANNIVERSARY

The 2024 season marks a significant milestone in the history of the Petty family as they have helped define stock car racing for 75 years. Their commitment to the sport and the people who make it possible – behind the wheel, under the hood, in the back office and beyond – has shaped the growth and success of NASCAR. Their LEGACY lives on with the countless fans, drivers, technicians and team members they touched. Throughout 2024, LEGACY M.C. will celebrate the Petty family and share countless memories with friends and fans at race tracks across the country.

Petty75: The Petty family has a rich history in Daytona. Lee Petty raced on the beach in the early 50s along with the inaugural Daytona 500 where he won by less than a yard and was not declared winner until three days later. Richard Petty holds a record-breaking seven Daytona 500 wins and a personal best 74 starts at the track. The Petty family spreads the wealth at the World Center of Racing, with wins between Lee, Richard, and Maurice Petty as crew chief in 1970 with Pete Hamilton. The Petty family tree doesn’t stop there, Maurice’s son Ritchie Petty ran the No. 53 during the July race in both 1993 and 1994 competing against his cousin Kyle Petty in both contests.

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