D.J. Kennington and Gaunt Brothers Racing will reunite for the upcoming Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Talladega Superspeedway on Sunday, May 7.
In February, Kennington, a native of St. Thomas, Ontario, became the first Canadian since Trevor Boys in 1988 to compete in the Daytona 500. He started 28th in GBR's No. 96 Toyota Camry before recording a 36th-place finish due to his involvement in a multi-car crash in the second half of the event.
Kennington finished 14th in his Can-Am Duel qualifying race, earning the first Cup Series start for GBR and owner Marty Gaunt.
Additionally, veteran crew chief Mike Ford has joined GBR. Ford, whose record includes 25 victories in points-paying races and non-points exhibitions at the Cup Series level, previously worked with Bill Elliott Racing, Robert Yates Racing and Joe Gibbs Racing.
"We're thrilled to bring D.J. back into the fold for Talladega," said Gaunt. "He did everything asked of him in February. With the addition of Mike Ford, we hope to build on what we accomplished in Daytona."
Kennington, a 19-time race winner in what is now the NASCAR Pinty's Series, has made just two career starts, including his run in the Daytona 500; however, he believes he received an education in driving on restrictor plate tracks during February's Speedweeks.
"Talladega weekend can't get here fast enough," said Kennington. "I learned a lot during our Duel race and in the 500. I felt like I was finally getting the hang of drafting before the accident took us out. The car was great in the draft and I know we can apply a lot of what we learned at Daytona to Talladega."
The remaining events for GBR in 2017, for which the driver will be announced at a later date, include Daytona on Saturday, July 1 and Talladega on Sunday, Oct. 15.