Eric Jones (racing driver)
July 12, 1977 |
|NASCAR Nationwide Series career|
|9 race(s) run over 6 year(s)|
|Best finish||93rd - 2002|
|First race||1998 Carquest Auto Parts 250 (Gateway)|
|Last race||2005 Meijer 300 (Kentucky)|
|NASCAR Camping World Truck Series career|
|27 race(s) run over 4 year(s)|
|Best finish||27th - 2003|
|First race||2001 GNC Live Well 200 (Milwaukee)|
|Last race||2004 Silverado 350K (Texas)|
|Statistics current as of June 14, 2010.|
Eric Jones is a former part-time NASCAR driver. He ran in the Busch Series and had some of his best success in the Craftsman Truck Series. He won one NASCAR Midwest Series before moving up to major NASCAR.
Jones had a significantly better qualifying effort in his 1999 start, which came at Watkins Glen. However, despite the 18th place start, Jones finished last. His 44th place finish was due to a break in the rocker arm.
Jones returned to competition in 2001. He started 37th in the #52 Means Racing Ford at Gateway. He fell to 39th in the order as an engine blew up thirteen laps into the event.
Jones competed in two 2002 events. In the Gateway race, Jones competed for Means Racing again, finishing 43rd after transmission failure. Then, Jones ran for Means' sister team, Moy Racing at Kansas. This time around, Jones ran a solid race and came home with a 26th place finish.
In 2004, Jones joined the new Red Cactus Racing team. In their debut at Kansas, Jones drove the team home with a solid 23rd place finish, leading to high expectations about their team. Jones also made the race at Homestead-Miami, finishing 41st because of a mid-race crash.
Red Cactus was scheduled to run a limited schedule in 2005. Their first start of the year came at Mexico City, where Jones made the inaugural race. He would finish the race 29th, his first career lead lap finish. However, after a series of failures and personal feuds, Jones left the team. He would make one other start on the year for the Sadler Brothers team at Kentucky. After promising performance in practice, he finished a disappointing 39th place due to a crew member leaving off the radiator cap.
Craftsman Truck Series
Jones ran four races in 2001 to begin his career in this series, running for his family team on a shoe-string budget at Midwestern tracks. He made his debut at Milwaukee, starting 28th and finishing 29th. After a 30th at Chicago, Jones scored his best run of the year. He was 23rd at Las Vegas before finishing 28th at California.
Jones made nine starts in 2002, all once again for his family team which was largely unsponsored. His best run of the year came at Kansas, where he finished 17th followed by 21st at Vegas. Jones' main problem was finishing races due to parts or preparation failures. In the nine starts, Jones only finished three of them. Nonetheless, he finished a decent 29th in points on a shoe-string budget with a team consisting of nothing but volunteers.
Jones finished 27th in points in 2003, his best career year in NASCAR. This came after joining E.J. Prescott Racing's #03 Chevy. He would finish in the top-twenty in eight of his nine starts. The highlight of the year was a 7th place start and 6th place finish at Kansas, his first career top-tens in both qualifying and results. He was 11th at Texas and had a pair of 14ths. The only race he did not finish was at New Hampshire, where he finished 26th after an engine failure. While the #03 had meager funding, the equipment and preparation was significantly better than the equipment he had been privileged to run to-date.
Jones' last year in the series to this point was in 2004, when he had five starts, running for Team Chick Motorsports. His best run was only a 17th at Kansas, however, and the team struggled throughout the season. He only had one other top-20 finish on the year. After the five starts, Jones joined Red Cactus Racing and has not returned to the series since.