Keeping up with the Jones

Reid Spencer - NASCAR Wire Service Saturday, May 02 1641
Erik Jones, who will not turn 19 until later this month, said he's on a tentative schedule that will find him in 46 races this season, among Sprint Cup, XFINITY and the Camping World Truck Series.

Jones will make his first Sprint Cup start next week at Kansas in the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 18 Toyota, though he drove in relief of Denny Hamlin in the Cup race at Bristol on April 19. He's expected to fill in until Kyle Busch returns from the injuries he suffered at Daytona in February.

"I've been begging to get in a car since Daytona, so they definitely took their time with it and let me develop this year," Jones said. "I honestly feel like I've advanced as a driver since Daytona and learned a lot as a driver ... so I think it's definitely a better time for me to be able to get into the car at Kansas and definitely feel more comfortable as a driver."

Jones, a member of the 2014 NASCAR Next class, praised the equipment and team at JGR and said, "It's just up to me now to really go out and do my job and try to be the best that I can."