Xfinity Series News (7349)
NASCAR Xfinity Series News
Ross Chastain had his hands firmly around the brass ring, but it still managed to slip from his grasp.
When Chastain, 26, appeared in the Las Vegas Motor Speedway media center last September, he had just hit the high note of his NASCAR Xfinity Series career. After an impressive showing at Darlington the week before, Chastain drove the No. 42 Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet to victory at Las Vegas.
Chastain had signed on for three races in the No. 42 and made an indelible mark in that limited sample size – enough to earn a full-time ride in the No. 42 Chevy for the 2019 season in a deal that was announced Nov. 9 at Phoenix.
During the offseason, however, the opportunity Chastain had earned with his head-turning performances fell apart abruptly and unexpectedly when sponsor DC Solar, which was to fund Chastain’s effort for the 2019 season, ran afoul of a federal investigation.
Without sponsorship, Ganassi abandoned his Xfinity Series program and the Cinderella story of the 2018 dissolved in disappointment.
“It’s part of life,” said Chastain, whose history as a Florida watermelon farmer has been well-documented. “I took a couple days when I first found out, and then a couple days at Christmas and New Year’s with my family. I got on a tractor and drove it for five days straight for our watermelon crop.
“I was jumping back and forth between tractors, working a regular job. I needed to just get on there… It was really good to just get that couple days away and then Jan. 2, back to Mooresville (N.C.) and hit the ground running.”
That’s an understatement. Chastain has done triple duty on the first two race weekends of the season. He’s also competing in all three of NASCAR’s national series at LVMS.
Driving for owner Jay Robinson, he posted a 10th-place finish in the Daytona 500. He started sixth and finished 13th in a Kaulig Racing Chevrolet in the Daytona Xfinity race and followed that with a 14th-place run at Atlanta in a reunion with former owner Johnny Davis.
In two Gander Outdoors Truck Series starts with Niece Motorsports, Chastain finished third at Daytona and sixth at Atlanta.
“On the No. 4 car, we’ve never had West Coast sponsors before, and we’ve got all our West Coast races filled up,” Chastain said of his ongoing effort with Davis. “That’s a big step forward. Johnny lost a lot in the offseason as well, of potential sponsorship and potential guys that were going to race for him, which ultimately worked out in my favor, where I was able to come back and race.
“That’s what a lot of those days at home were, figuring out, ‘Do I want to do this? Do I want to start over?’”
One of the yardsticks Chastain used for comparison was his brother, who is six years younger and once had aspiration to race.
“My brother is 20 years old, he’s building a house, driving a truck, working at the farm, and he’s so far ahead of where I’m at. I’m driving a used truck. I’m renting a house in Mooresville, and it’s just different aspects of life.
“So I thought I could go to the farm with a lot lower stress – but I want to race. I want to make a go at this, and I feel like I can get back to where I was and a lot further.”
And next time, perhaps Chastain will have better luck holding onto the brass ring.
SMG and NASCAR driver Gray Gaulding announces debut of new sponsor partner with entry of the No. 08 Flywheel Chevrolet Camaro to compete in the Xfinity Series Boyd Gaming 300 this Saturday, March 2nd at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and NASCAR Xfinity Series race on March 9th at ISM Raceway near Phoenix. Flywheel Technologies is a specialized mobility software company dedicated to evolving and revitalizing the taxi industry by creating a technology platform for passengers to easily connect with the safest, most experienced and well-trained drivers on the road.
“As a professional driver myself, I’m extremely excited to represent the Flywheel team and their commitment to excellence and providing Flywheel customers and partners with the best possible drivers and ride experiences available in the market today” said Gray Gaulding. “Racing at the next 2 NASCAR Xfinity Series events in Nevada and Arizona provides a great opportunity for us to introduce and promote advancing high-tech companies like Flywheel that offer outstanding services to all of our fan base throughout the entire United States.”
"Flywheel is extremely excited to be partnering with Gray and his NASCAR team. We value and support professional drivers." said Flywheel's CEO, Izzy Aala. "It's exhilarating to see Gray excited by the technology Flywheel uses to connect passengers to trained and experienced drivers. As a NASCAR driver, he uniquely appreciates how important it is to have a professional driver drive you and your loved ones around your community. I’m proud to say Flywheel’s drivers are top notch, like Gray and his team."
SMG/Gray Gaulding PR
Jeremy Clements gets back to the familiar black and red #51 Camaro SS RepairableVehicles.com livery as they head out West for the first leg of the #NASCARGoesWest swing at Las Vegas Motor Speedway Saturday afternoon.
When asked about the West coast swing Clements said, “It’s been a heckuva week getting two new cars prepared to head out there, and it has been all hands-on deck with all of us working to early into the morning hours every day to get these new cars we just got ready to race.” Clements went on to say, “I think we will be pretty fast this weekend and give the RepairableVehicles.com / Tuff Hedeman Tour Chevy a good ride into the Top 15 possibly a Top 10.”
- Jeremy’s 9th career start at LVMS
- Best finish of 13th - 11/2018
- Best start of 12th - 11/2018
About RepairableVehicles.com A division of Interstate Auto Center, Inc., RepairableVehicles.com, is one of the leading resellers of repairable vehicles in North America. By working together with insurance companies,dealerships, rental companies, and automotive salvage auctions, we are able to provide an ever changing inventory of high quality total-loss, recovered theft, collision damage, and other types of repairable vehicles to our customers worldwide. Visit RepairableVehicles.com for more Information.
ATTEND THE TUFF HEDEMAN BULL RIDING - Sat. Mar. 2 at 7:30 p.m. - South Point Arena
The Tuff Hedeman Bull Riding Tour joins the Las Vegas Ultimate Sports Weekend with a live bucking bull on display at the LV Events Center.
Tuff Hedeman bull riding returns to the South Point Arena on Saturday, March 2 for a one night only performance with 3 World Champions and 9 NFR qualifiers battling it out for a prize purse of $30,000. The four-Time World Champion bull rider Tuff Hedeman heats up Las Vegas with his invitation only signature style event featuring three rounds of competition ending in a sudden death format.
Hedeman, a live bucking bull branded Hellfire, Bullfighter Bryce Redo, and NFR qualifier Eli Vastbinder will be at the Las Vegas Event Center on Thursday, February 28 from 3 pm - 6 pm and then back at the South Point Equestrian Center on March 2 for the competition, as part of the Las Vegas Ultimate Sports Weekend.
JP Motorsports is excited to announce thier return to the NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS) in 2019. Owned by Jerry and Phyllis Hattaway, the team will be kicking off thier sophomore season very soon, following the West Coast Swing races. JP Motorsports fielded the No. 45 and No. 55 Toyotas full-time during the 2018 NXS season.
"A lot of good changes have happened at JP Motorsports over the winter," said team owner, Jerry Hattaway. "2018 was definitely a big year for us with a lot challenges, but we're still here and looking to keep building on what we started. We've moved to a new shop in Concord, NC, and we've got some fast cars built and ready to race. We're looking forward to giving some more new, up-and-coming drivers a chance in the NASCAR Xfinity Series."
JP Motorsports is currently seeking drivers for the 2019 season who are willing to work hard to help bring funding to the team. Interested drivers can contact jpmotorsports55@gmail.
JP Motorsports PR
iK9 Racing: 1st Foundation Rides with Rowdy -- Kyle Busch to Feature Non-Profit on No. 18 iK9 Toyota Supra in NXS27 Feb 2019 Written by Steven B. Wilson
The No. 18 iK9 Toyota Supra Kyle Busch will race this weekend in the Boyd Gaming 300 NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway will prominently feature the 1st Foundation, a 100-percent volunteer organization that provides assistance to those arriving first on the scene in foreign and domestic conflicts.
Working with Special Operations Forces and Law Enforcement Operations, the 1st Foundation administers grants for continuing education, specialized equipment, and training for those in need. The non-profit also helps with medical bills and access to PTSD programs, as well as college scholarships to those operators and their families in need of assistance through their Gold Star Family Programs. 1st Foundation board members cover all administrative costs, allowing every dollar donated to be utilized for its core mission.
“The time, effort and sacrifice our veterans have made is exceptional, and the dedication they put into their roles defending our country can sometimes make their transition to civilian life a challenge,” said Landon Ash, executive director of the 1st Foundation and founder of Birmingham, Alabama-based Xtreme Concepts, the parent company of iK9. “The 1st Foundation helps ease that challenge in a variety of ways, and it’s a part of our never-ending commitment to those who serve.”
The 1st Foundation also ensures our K9 heroes are rewarded for their service and dedication by placing retired military dogs requiring rehabilitation with veterans in need of companionship, helping both reacclimate to civilian life. The 1st Foundation also supplies service dogs to veterans in need, all of which are trained to Veteran Affairs standards. Additionally, 1st Foundation provides K9s to police departments, ultimately making our communities a safer place.
To assist the cause of 1st Foundation, please visit 1stfoundation.com/donate. Residents of Alabama can go a step further by purchasing a specialized 1st Foundation license plate for their personal vehicles through the Alabama Department of Revenue’s website.
Busch, the all-time leader in Xfinity Series victories with a whopping 92 career wins, will carry a 1st Foundation license plate on his No. 18 iK9 Toyota Supra with his nickname “ROWDY” emblazoned on the tag.
Richard Childress Racing announced today that Hurdl, an experiential SMS tech company that helps fans connect with their favorite teams, drivers, and brands, joined the team with a multi-race partnership in 2019. Hurdl will make its first appearance in NASCAR as a primary partner on defending Xfinity Series champion Tyler Reddick's No. 2 Chevrolet Camaro during NASCAR's West Coast Swing, starting at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Saturday, March 2.
Coming off the first NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS) race of the season in Daytona with four clean cars, the JD Motorsports with Gary Keller (JDM) race teams headed to Atlanta Motor Speedway full of confidence.
The first mile and a half intermediate track is always a tough one on both the equipment and the tires, as the track surface hasn’t been repaved since the late 1990’s. Atlanta is known as a driver’s track, one that showcases drivers’ abilities more than others due to its’ difficult nature.
Ross Chastain made his triumphant return to JDM this past weekend driving the No. 4 Chevrolet Camaro SS, and he led the way for the team in all on track sessions. Due to qualifying being rained out, however, the field was set by owner’s points from last season, relegating Chastain to a 15th place starting spot. He hung in tough all afternoon, running a smart race near the Top 10, all while keeping care of his equipment. He brought his Chevy home in the 14th position, scoring the team’s first Top 15 finish of the year.
Nipping at Ross’s heels most of the race was Garrett Smithley in the No. 0 “In Memory of Hippie” Chevrolet Camaro SS. Owner’s points had Smithley starting from the 22nd position, but he was able to quickly work his way through the field, and with a fortunate caution, he was able to receive the Free Pass to put himself back on the lead lap. He finished in 18th place and moves up a few positions in the points standings.
For BJ McLeod’s No. 15 crew, they knew going into Atlanta that they would have to fight an uphill battle due to the fact that they would not have the full tire allotment for the race. However, McLeod was able to take care of his equipment and manage his tire wear throughout the event, coming home with a 24th place finish after starting in 29th in his No. 15 Chevrolet Camaro SS.
Stephen Leicht, driver of the No. 01 “In Memory of Hippie” Chevrolet Camaro SS, had a relatively successful weekend as well. Like McLeod, Leicht’s team did not have the full tire allotment, but some clean driving allowed them to bring home a 25th place finish after starting in 30th place.
The NASCAR Xfinity Series heads out west to Las Vegas, Nevada for the first leg of the “West Coast Swing” on Saturday, March 2nd. The Boyd Gaming 300 can be viewed live on FOX Sports 1 at 4:00 PM ET (1:00 PM local). Be sure to tune in to cheer on all four JD Motorsports with Gary Keller race teams and see how well they are able to roll the dice in the desert.