Speedway Digest Staff
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This week, GMS Racing announced that it would be welcoming veteran Crew Chief Jeff Hensley back on top of the pit box for the No. 23 Champion Power Equipment Chevrolet driven by Grant Enfinger in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.
As one of the most respected crew chiefs in the garage, Jeff Hensley brings vast knowledge from a career spanning over 35 years in the sport. In total, Hensley has amassed 18 Truck Series wins and 11 Xfinity Series wins, and was the championship winning crew chief for the 1990 Xfinity Series season. He was previously with GMS Racing for two seasons in 2016 and 2021, serving as crew chief for drivers Spencer Gallagher, Chase Purdy, and AJ Allmendinger.
Hensley is optimistic about a change in scenery, stating "I am grateful for the opportunity to return to GMS Racing and reunite with Grant. We have great chemistry, and Grant is a driver that I have a lot of respect for on and off the racetrack. We have high hopes for the remainder of the 2022 season, and we have a team capable of contending for wins on a consistent basis. I look forward to showing our strength in these final eight races of the year."
Keen followers of the series will remember that this will not be the first pairing between the two. Hensley and Enfinger have worked well together in the past, as the duo won five races during a four season span from 2017-2020. Ironically, the last time these two personalities worked together, they made the final round of the playoffs and competed against three GMS Racing teams for the championship. That year in 2020, Enfinger earned his best points finish to date, finishing fourth in the overall standings.
Enfinger looks forward to working with a familiar face once again, stating “Jeff and I have had success together in the past, and I’m looking forward to having him back to call the shots for the remainder of the season on our Champion Power Equipment Chevy. We know each other well so we should be able to pick up where we left off a couple years ago.”
The newly reunited duo will make their first on track appearance at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course for the O'Reilly Auto Parts 150 on Saturday, July 9th. Enfinger currently sits ninth in the NCWTS points standings in a season highlighted by three top-fives and seven top-10 finishes, and is eyeing his fourth playoffs appearance. The No. 23 GMS Racing team is positioned in eleventh in the team standings, and is actively pushing to make a run at making the owners' points playoffs with just two races left in the regular season.
GMS Racing PR
Atlanta singer and songwriter Blanco Brown got a taste of speed at Atlanta Motor Speedway Tuesday.
Brown took laps in Atlanta Motor Speedway's pace car in preparation for his duties as Honorary Pace Car driver for the Quaker State 400 Presented by Walmart on July 10.
"I'm so excited and it means so much because I grew up listening to cars go around this track, so to be able to drive the pace car is a blessing," said Brown.
Brown is no stranger to NASCAR at Atlanta Motor Speedway. He's been coming to races at AMS since he was a child and always enjoys time at the track.
"My first time being here at this track I was around 11 years old and I didn't know what to expect," recalled Brown. "Seeing it on TV and actually being in the stands is a whole other feeling. There's nothing else like it.
"I love it and now it just feels like home. NASCAR is a go-to for me."
Tickets to the Quaker State 400 Presented by Walmart weekend July 8-10 at Atlanta Motor Speedway are available online at www.AtlantaMotorSpeedway.com.
USA Network begins its run as NBC Sports’ new cable home of the NASCAR Cup and Xfinity Series this weekend with live race coverage from Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wis., this Saturday and Sunday, July 2 and 3, beginning at 2 p.m. ET each day.
USA Network will be the exclusive home for 23 of the next 26 NASCAR Cup and Xfinity Series races through September, visiting iconic tracks such as Atlanta Motor Speedway, Watkins Glen International, Darlington Raceway and Talladega Superspeedway.
Including practice and qualifying, as well as the NASCAR ARCA Menards Series and Whelen Modified Tour, USA Network will present nearly 200 hours of NASCAR coverage in 2022.
USA Network has been a top five cable entertainment brand for over 20 years and is widely available across cable, satellite and streaming providers, including:
- AT&T U-verse HD: Channel 1125
- Charter Spectrum HD: Channel 101
- Comcast XFINITY TV HD: Channel 823
- Cox Contour HD: Channel 1028
- DIRECTV HD: Channel 242
- DISH Network HD: Channel 105
- Verizon FiOS: Channel 550
- Optimum: Channel 38
Channel listings may vary by market and could be updated by the provider to a different channel at any time.
USA Network is also available via most streaming services, including:
- DirecTV Stream
- Hulu + Live TV
- Sling TV (Blue package)
- Youtube TV
Earlier this year, USA Network became the cable home of premium NBC Sports events, which, in addition to NASCAR, includes coverage of the Premier League, INDYCAR, the Olympic Games, USGA and The R&A Golf Championships, horse racing, cycling and more.
As in years past, coverage airing on USA Network will also stream on NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app via authentication.
Following are NBC Sports’ full 2022 NASCAR Cup and Xfinity Series schedules:
|NBC SPORTS 2022 NASCAR CUP SERIES SCHEDULE|
|Sunday, July 3||Road America||USA||3 p.m.|
|Sunday, July 10||Atlanta||USA||3 p.m.|
|Sunday, July 17||New Hampshire||USA||3 p.m.|
|Sunday, July 24||Pocono||USA||3 p.m.|
|Sunday, July 31||Indianapolis Road Course||NBC||2:30 p.m.|
|Sunday, August 7||Michigan||USA||3 p.m.|
|Sunday, August 14||Richmond||USA||3 p.m.|
|Sunday, August 21||Watkins Glen||USA||3 p.m.|
|Saturday, August 27||Daytona||NBC, Peacock||7 p.m.|
|Sunday, September 4||Darlington||USA||6 p.m.|
|Sunday, September 11||Kansas||USA||3 p.m.|
|Saturday, September 17||Bristol||USA||7:30 p.m.|
|Sunday, September 25||Texas||USA||3:30 p.m.|
|Sunday, October 2||Talladega||NBC||2 p.m.|
|Sunday, October 9||Charlotte ROVAL||NBC||2 p.m.|
|Sunday, October 16||Las Vegas||NBC||2:30 p.m.|
|Sunday, October 23||Homestead-Miami||NBC||2:30 p.m.|
|Sunday, October 30||Martinsville||NBC||2 p.m.|
|Sunday, November 6||Phoenix||NBC, Peacock||3 p.m.|
|NBC SPORTS 2022 NASCAR XFINITY SERIES SCHEDULE|
|Saturday, July 2||Road America||USA||2:30 p.m.|
|Saturday, July 9||Atlanta||USA||5 p.m.|
|Saturday, July 16||New Hampshire||USA||2:30 p.m.|
|Saturday, July 23||Pocono||USA||5 p.m.|
|Saturday, July 30||Indianapolis Road Course||NBC, Peacock||3:30 p.m.|
|Saturday, August 6||Michigan||USA||3:30 p.m.|
|Saturday, August 20||Watkins Glen||USA||3 p.m.|
|Friday, August 26||Daytona||USA||7:30 p.m.|
|Saturday, September 3||Darlington||USA||3 p.m.|
|Saturday, September 10||Kansas||USA||3 p.m.|
|Friday, September 16||Bristol||USA||7:30 p.m.|
|Saturday, September 24||Texas||USA||3:30 p.m.|
|Saturday, October 1||Talladega||USA||4 p.m.|
|Saturday, October 8||Charlotte ROVAL||NBC, Peacock||3 p.m.|
|Saturday, October 15||Las Vegas||NBC, Peacock||3 p.m.|
|Saturday, October 22||Homestead-Miami||USA||4:30 p.m.|
|Saturday, October 29||Martinsville||NBC, Peacock||3 p.m.|
|Saturday, November 5||Phoenix||USA||6 p.m.|
NBC Sports PR
No. 54 Monster Energy Toyota GR Supra News and Notes
- ALREADY PLAYOFF BOUND: By winning the Las Vegas, Atlanta and Richmond NASCAR Xfinity Series races, Ty Gibbs has qualified for the Xfinity playoffs which will begin at Texas Motor Speedway on Sept. 24.
- ROAD AMERICA: In 2021, Gibbs won the pole at Road America and led two laps, but a problem with the transmission caused him to finish 33rd.
- NEW RECORD: Gibbs is the youngest driver ever to reach seven victories in the NASCAR Xfinity Series at age 19 years 5 months and 29 days. The previous record was held by Joey Logano.
- 2021: Gibbs completed in only 18 Xfinity races in 2021, but won four races and finished 13th in the Xfinity Series final driver point standings. That earned him the Xfinity Rookie of the Year award.
- WHAT A DEBUT: In Gibbs’ Xfinity Series debut in February 2021 at the Daytona Road Course, he led 14 of the 56 laps en route to his first career Xfinity Series win. Gibbs became the youngest driver to win a Xfinity road course race at 18 years, 4 months, 16 days. The Charlotte, N.C., native also became the second-youngest winner in Xfinity Series history after Joey Logano who won in June 2008 at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta when he was 18 years and 21 days old.
- IN GOOD COMPANY: Gibbs is the sixth driver to win in his Xfinity Series debut, joining Dale Earnhardt, Joe Ruttman, Ricky Rudd, Terry Labonte and Kurt Busch. Those five drivers had already driven in the NASCAR Cup Series before racing in the Xfinity Series.
- ARCA CHAMPIONS: Gibbs became the 2021 ARCA Menard Series Champions on the strength of 10 wins, plus one win each in ARCA West and ARCA East.
- ATOP THE PIT BOX: Veteran crew chief Gayle will oversee the No. 54 team’s efforts in the 2022 season. Gale, who is from Little Rock, Arkansas, has led his drivers to two NASCAR Cup Series victories and 33 Xfinity Series wins. The list of drivers Gayle has visited victory lane with includes Gibbs, Kyle Busch, Denny Hamlin, Sam Hornish Jr., Erik Jones, Elliott Sadler, Christopher Bell and John Hunter Nemechek.
- JGR AT ROAD AMERICA: Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) has competed in 36 races at Road America with two victories, eight top-five and 16 top-10 finishes. The team has two poles and has led 149 laps.
- RACE INFO: The NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Road America is scheduled for 2:30 pm EDT on Saturday, July 2 and will be broadcast on USA, SiriusXM Channel 90 and MRN.
Ty Gibbs, Driver of the No. 54 Monster Energy Toyota GR Supra
“It was good to get a top-five at Nashville, but now were ready for Road America. We had a good run there last year, but had a part failure late in the race. I enjoy road course racing and like Road America. I know Chris Gayle and the Monster Energy guys will bring me a good Toyota Supra.”
Chris Gayle, Crew Chief of the No. 54 Monster Energy Toyota GR Supra
“Ty is a great road course racer and we’ll bring him a good Monster Energy Toyota GR Supra. Road America is tough because you have to have extra spotters and if you have any sort of issue, it’s a long way to pit road. But it’s a great course and we’re looking forward to getting up there and hopefully having success.”
Officials from Track Enterprises and the ARCA Midwest Tour announced today that they have reached an agreement allowing Track Enterprises to acquire the regional ARCA Midwest Tour Super Late Model series at the end of the 2022 season.
Bob Sargent, President of Track Enterprises, and Gregg McKarns of the AMTW released a joint statement regarding the transaction. The acquisition will see AMWT Series owners Gregg and Angie McKarns and officials continue to work with the series for the foreseeable future.
“As the asphalt Super Late Model landscape continues to change, we look forward to where the Track Enterprises team can take the Tour. This will allow Angie and I to still promote numerous Super Late Model events throughout the region, while streamlining other operational aspects involved in Super Late Model racing across the nation,” indicated McKarns.
In addition to the ARCA Midwest Tour, Gregg and Angie McKarns promote and operate Madison International Speedway in Oregon, WI, Angell Park Speedway in Sun Prairie, WI, and the Oktoberfest Race Weekend at LaCrosse Fairgrounds Speedway.
Established in 1985, Track Enterprises is a highly respected and successful motorsports marketing and event promotions company, hosting local, regional, and national events for parts of five decades. Headquartered in Macon, IL, Track Enterprises is involved in over 100 events annually. Sargent recently announced the acquisition of the Champion Racing Association, inclusive of the ARCA/CRA Super Series, JEGS/CRA All-Star Tour, and two additional regional grassroots racing series.
The CRA purchase announcement brought about speculation of a potential national tour for Super Late Models. Sargent once again alluded to that speculation.
“Gregg, Angie, and their staff have done a great job with the tour over the years. We are working for a consolidated future to better assist all the local and regional teams and look forward to exploring a national tour as well,” stated Sargent.
Track Enterprises promotes races featuring some of the nation’s most popular touring series, including the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, ARCA Menards Series, USAC, SRX, DIRTcar, UMP, World of Outlaws, POWRi Racing, and the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series. Additionally, Track Enterprises manages racing promotions at Macon (IL) Speedway, Lincoln (IL) Speedway, and the Nashville (TN) Fairgrounds Speedway.
Track Enterprises PR
Nebraska And Kansas Line Independence Day Weekend Triple With The Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series
- The weekend schedule in Wisconsin features practice returning to its normal slot mid-morning on Saturday, immediately followed by qualifying.
Keselowski at Road America
- Keselowski finished 13th last season at Road America in the Cup Series’ debut.
- Overall, he has 11 top-10 finishes on road courses in Cup with a 15.2 average finish.
- In road course action this season, Keselowski has finishes of 14th (COTA) and 10th (Sonoma).
Matt McCall at Road America
- McCall led Kurt Busch and the No. 1 team to a fourth-place run last season at Road America.
- Overall on road courses, McCall has a 13.7 average finish with 11 results inside the top-10.
Keselowski on racing at Road America:
“Road America is definitely one of our more unique tracks and one that’s challenging in so many ways. It can be fast, but it can also be slow, so finding the right balance in rhythm is key for our longest course on the circuit. Sonoma turned out to be pretty good for us, so our hope is that some of that momentum carries over to the weekend in our Kohler Generators Ford.”
Last Time Out
Keselowski was inside the top-10 late in the long race Sunday at Nashville before getting sent into the wall to finish 29th in the King’s Hawaiian Ford.
On the Car
Kohler returns for its seventh primary race this season. Kohler is the anchor partner for the No. 6 team throughout the 2022 campaign, and will be the primary in 14 races after initially joining the RFK partner family in 2021 with eight events on the No. 6 team.
Keselowski’s No. 6 this weekend will feature names of military heroes that include veterans, active military and military family members, as part of the Checkered Flag Foundation’s Tribute to Veterans Program. More than 135 names are displayed on the No. 6 for Road America, as the program has honored nearly 1,000 heroes since its inception four years ago. For more information on the Foundation and Tribute to Veterans, visit CheckeredFlagFoundation.org and visit them on social (@BCKFF on Twitter and Checkered Flag Foundation on Facebook and Instagram).
- The weekend schedule in Wisconsin features practice returning to its normal slot mid-morning on Saturday, immediately followed by qualifying.
Buescher at Road America
- Buescher finished 18th a year ago at Road America after starting 12th.
- Overall on road courses, Buescher has a 16.4 finish in Cup with three top-10s, all of which came in the last three seasons, and all of which were inside the top five.
- This season in road racing, Buescher finished 21st at COTA, but rebounded in Sonoma with a P2 finish after leading four laps and running inside the top five most all day.
- Buescher also made two Xfinity starts at Road America with a P9 finish in 2015.
Scott Graves at Road America
- Graves finished 32nd a year ago with Ryan Newman at Road America.
- His road course record to date in Cup features six top-10 finishes, including most recently the runner-up result with Buescher in Sonoma.
- Graves also called three Xfinity events at Road America in recent years, leading Daniel Suarez to a P4 finish in 2016, with two additional starts with Buescher in 2014-15.
Buescher on racing at Road America:
“I like road racing in general, it breaks up our schedule nicely. I got an ARCA win at Road America several years back and it’s been a really neat race track. It has good rhythm and is somewhat of a cross of Sonoma and some of these others that have higher-speed areas, but slower tempo areas, as well. It’s a really fun track and I can’t wait to get there and see if we can replicate some of our recent road racing experience in the Fastenal Ford.”
Last Time Out
Buescher lost a wheel late in Sunday’s race from Nashville, ultimately finishing 30th in a race that featured three-plus hours in weather delays.
On the Car
Fastenal, in its 12th season with RFK in 2022, makes its 11th appearance with the No. 17 this weekend. In its early days with RFK, Fastenal originally was a partner with the No. 99 team before moving over to the No. 17 team since. They were also the primary partner on the No. 60 Xfinity Series entry that captured the owner’s championship in 2011.
Fastenal will feature top suppliers Brady Worldwide, Streamlight, Louisville Ladder, Ergodyne and Walter USA on Buescher’s Mustang as he competes this weekend. For more information on these suppliers, visit Fastenal.com, and stay up-do-date on social @FastenalCompany.