This week the No. 54 Monster Energy seat will again see 26-year-old Drew Herring in the Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) eight-time season-winning Camry. Herring, a familiar face at JGR, along with the 2013 winners look forward to week 20 running the U.S. Cellular 250 presented by the Enlist Weed Control System at Iowa Speedway in Newton. The team drives into the Iowa event, on a race high, having won the previous NASCAR Nationwide Series event at the Indianapolis (Ind.) Motor Speedway – the famed Brickyard, with driver Kyle Busch. With the week 19 victory, the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 54 group and owner J.D. Gibbs maintain first place in the series’ Owner’s Championship points. This week they look to extend that lead with the help of Herring, who while young, has good statistics as a driver in Iowa.
In 2010 Benson, N.C. native Herring began his Nationwide Series career at Baker Curb Racing with his debut race at Iowa Speedway. He accomplished a 15th-place finish in that inaugural series run and then continued that year with two top-20 finishes in four series starts.
The next year, Herring connected with Joe Gibbs Racing and finished 12th or better in all four of his Nationwide Series starts. In the spring 2011 race, Herring started from the pole position, since the No. 20 team was leading the Owner’s Championship Point Standings, at the time, and qualifying was rained out. He led 39 laps that event and finished 12th. Overall in 2011, Herring improved his statistics by achieving two top-10 finishes in four starts and by completing all 929 event laps.
2012 brought continued growth for Herring when he made his first start in the No. 18 JGR entry at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta, where he qualified fourth, led two laps and brought home a fourth-place finish. This was also the year when Herring made his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series debut with Kyle Busch Motorsports, back at Iowa Speedway for the fall race. His first foray into truck racing accomplished a 17th-place start, 19 laps led and a seventh-place finish.
In addition to filling test session duties for both Joe Gibbs Racing and Kyle Busch Motorsports now, Herring is also a shop employee within JGR, where he works the CNC machine making internal parts for the race team and learning more about each team member’s role. His goal has been to make himself available for any driving opportunities and this year he’ll compete in three total Nationwide Series events with the high-performing JGR Nationwide Series shop.
At the first 2013 NASCAR Iowa race in June, Herring and team battled weather and car conditions to produce an 11th-place finish. Both driver and team were disappointed with the result the last time together and look to improve that position Saturday, this time under the lights on the Iowa short track.
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