Posted in Cup Series, Xfinity Series

Joe Gibbs inducted into Hall of Fame

Along with Buddy Baker, Bobby Labonte, Tony Stewart and Waddell Wilson, team owner Joe Gibbs was one of five men inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte, North Carolina on January 31.

“The NASCAR family is just unreal,” Gibbs said, referencing his concerns about leaving the National Football League and focusing his efforts on America’s top form of auto racing nearly 30 years ago.

“Everyone stretched out their arms. The fans, the fellow competitors … that meant a lot as we took off in racing.”

Gibbs holds the unique distinction of also being a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio. During his first stint as the head coach of the Washington Redskins from 1981-92, Gibbs’ teams won three Super Bowls (1983, ’88, ’92) and he was twice named Associated Press Coach of the Year (1982-83).

Following a 12-year hiatus, Gibbs returned to coach the Redskins a second time for four more seasons from 2004-07. Overall, he posted a 154-94 record, good for a .621 winning percentage.

Opened in 1992, Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) has captured five Cup Series championships: Labonte in 2000, Stewart in 2002 and 2005 and Kyle Busch in 2015 and 2019.

It is fitting Labonte and Stewart joined their former owner in the 2020 class; Busch will surely join the trio following his retirement. Based on his 2019 campaign, however, this date is still several years away.

NASCAR on NBC shared a portion of Gibbs’ induction speech:

Beginning with the Daytona 500 on February 16, JGR will again field four Toyota Camry’s in 2020: The No. 11 for Denny Hamlin, No. 18 for Busch, No. 19 for Martin Truex Jr. and No. 20 for Erik Jones.

The green flag will wave shortly after 1 p.m. ET for the 62nd running of “The Great American Race” on NASCAR on FOX.

Posted in Cup Series

Acorns “pausing” Roush Fenway Racing sponsorship

First reported by the Sports Business Journal’s Adam Stern, Acorns will not be returning as a Roush Fenway Racing (RFR) sponsor in 2020.

The company served as the primary sponsor on Ryan Newman’s No. 6 Ford Mustang in six races in 2019.

Launched in 2012 and based in Irvine, California, Acorns is a financial services company specializing in micro and robo-investing.

Announced on Wednesday, RFR has taken steps toward filling this void by agreeing to a new sponsorship deal with Castrol.

Newman’s 2020 Castrol Ford Mustang.

His first season with RFR following a five-year stint with Richard Childress Racing (RCR), Newman totaled three top-five and 14 top-ten finishes in 2019.

Newman has 18 wins to his credit over 656 career Cup Series races; the most recent came in the Camping World 500 at then-Phoenix International Raceway on March 19, 2017.

Posted in Cup Series

Kurt Busch unveils 2020 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE

Less than four weeks from the 62nd running of the Daytona 500, Kurt Busch took to Twitter to unveil his 2020 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE on Wednesday.

Busch points out the changes in his 2020 car.

A native of Las Vegas, Nevada, the 41-year-old Busch joined Chip Ganassi Racing (CGR) in 2019 following a five-year run at Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR).

Taking over for NASCAR on FOX analyst Jamie McMurray, he piloted the No. 1 to a 13th-place finish in the final standings, collecting six top-five finishes, including winning the Quaker State 400 at Kentucky Speedway in July.

Over the course of his 20-year career, Busch has racked up 31 wins, 298 top-ten finishes and claimed 27 pole awards.

With the green flag set to wave shortly after 1 p.m. ET, the Daytona 500 will air on FOX with Mike Joy, Jeff Gordon and Larry McReynolds on the call. This will be the network’s first airing of “The Great American Race” without 1989 winner Darrell Waltrip since he announced his retirement from broadcasting last year.