Joe Gibbs Racing

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Joe Gibbs Racing
Joe Gibbs Racing logo.pngJoe-Gibbs-Racing-HQ-Huntersville-NC-July-7-2005.JPG
Owner(s) Joe Gibbs
J. D. Gibbs
Base Huntersville, North Carolina
Series Sprint Cup Series
Nationwide Series
Race drivers Sprint Cup Series:
11. Denny Hamlin
18. Kyle Busch
20. Matt Kenseth
Nationwide Series:
11. Elliott Sadler
20. Matt Kenseth (17 races)
Sam Hornish, Jr.
Kenny Habul (2 races)
54. Kyle Busch
Sam Hornish, Jr.[1]
Darrell Wallace, Jr.
Erik Jones
Daniel Suárez
Justin Boston
Cody Coughlin
Drew Herring
Sponsors Sprint Cup Series:
11. FedEx
18. M&M's/Snickers/Skittles
Interstate Batteries (6 races)
20. Home Depot/Husky Tools
Dollar General
Nationwide Series:
11. OneMain Financial/Sport Clips
20. Reser's Fine Foods
Game Stop
Sun Energy 1
54. Monster Energy
Manufacturer Toyota
Debut 1992 Daytona 500 (Daytona)
Latest race 2014 GEICO 500 (Talladega)
Drivers' Championships Sprint Cup Series: 2000, 2002, 2005
Nationwide Series: 2009
Race victories 213
Sprint Cup Series: 115
Nationwide Series: 98
Pole positions 169

Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) is a group of NASCAR racing teams owned and operated by former Washington Redskins coach Joe Gibbs, who first started racing on the NASCAR circuit in 1991, and J. D. Gibbs, his son. Headquartered in Huntersville, North Carolina, near Charlotte, the team has amassed three Sprint Cup championships since the year 2000. . For the team's first sixteen seasons, JGR ran cars from General Motors. During that period, the team won their three championships, two in Pontiac Grand Prixes and one in a Chevrolet Monte Carlo. Despite this, during the 2007 season Joe Gibbs Racing announced that they would be ending their arrangement with GM at the end of the year and begin running Toyotas the following season.

The team currently fields the No. 11 FedEx Toyota Camry for Denny Hamlin, the No. 18 M&M's Toyota Camry for Kyle Busch, and the No. 20 Husky / Dollar General Toyota Camry for Matt Kenseth in the Sprint Cup Series. The team will add a fourth #19 Arris Toyota for Carl Edwards in 2015. They also field the #11 OneMain Financial Toyota Camry for Elliott Sadler, the #20 Reser's Fine Foods/GameStop Toyota Camry for Kenseth and other drivers, as well as the #54 Monster Energy Toyota Camry for Busch and Sam Hornish, Jr. in the Nationwide Series.

The team also has a strong development program for up and coming drivers, grooming future Sprint Cup Winners Joey Logano and Aric Almirola and winning one championship in the East Division of the NASCAR Camping World Series (now K&N Pro Series) with Logano. The organization also teamed up with former NFL player Reggie White to create a diversity program, fielding drivers such as Almirola and Marc Davis, and forming the basis for NASCAR's own Drive for Diversity program. Currently, Darrell Wallace, Jr., Erik Jones, Drew Herring, and Daniel Suárez are under development contracts, driving in the Nationwide Series for JGR and the Camping World Truck Series for Kyle Busch Motorsports

Sprint Cup[edit]


The team was founded by Gibbs in 1991 after exploring opportunities with Don Meredith, who currently serves as the teams Executive Vice President.[2] The team expanded to a two car operation in 1999 with Tony Stewart's #20 Home Depot car, then a three car operation in 2005 with the #11 FedEx car currently driven by Denny Hamlin and owned by Joe's son J.D. Gibbs. The team expanded to four cars for the 2015 season with Carl Edwards driving the #19 car, following former Roush Racing teammate Matt Kenseth to JGR.[3]

After winning 3 Cup championships and over 70 NASCAR races, it was announced in September 2007 that the team would be switching to Toyota (who had just entered the Cup series that year) following the end of their commitment with General Motors at the end of the season. It was believed that the executives at JGR felt as if they weren't as important as some of the other GM teams such as Hendrick Motorsports and Richard Childress Racing, leading to the decision to swap manufacturers. According to Joe Gibbs, Toyota offered the team resources and options they "we're not going to be able to afford to do" if they remained at GM.[4]

Car #11 History[edit]

Denny Hamlin at Homestead in 2007.

Previously JGR's research and development car, what is now the #11 car debuted at the 2003 Pepsi 400 as #80, driven by Mike Bliss and sponsored by Advair and finishing 26th. The car remained idle until the 2004 Tropicana 400, when Bliss finished 31st in the ConAgra/Slim Jim machine. After a fourth place finish in the fall race at Richmond International Raceway, the team switched to #11 (the number J.D. Gibbs wore playing football at College of William & Mary). Ricky Craven, recently released from PPI Motorsports finished 30th at Talladega,[5] and Busch Series driver J. J. Yeley ran two races in the car.

The #11 car went full-time in 2005, with new sponsor FedEx coming on to fund the full season in a multi-year deal. Jason Leffler, who had driven for JGR in the Busch series, was signed to drive the #11 for the full season, while Dave Rogers was named the crew chief.[6] The new team struggled early on in the season. Leffler missed the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte, with FedEx Freight moving over to the 18 car that Bobby Labonte would wheel to a second place finish.[7] Rogers was reassigned and replaced with veteran crew chief Mike Ford in June,[8] then former Cup champion Terry Labonte was hired to run the road course at Sonoma, qualifying 8th and finishing a solid 12th.[9] After 19 starts with a best finish of 12th and sitting 36th in points, Leffler was released from the ride. Terry Labonte ran the next three races, then ran the Fall Richmond race finishing 9th.[10] J.J. Yeley ran 4 races with a best finish of 25th. In November, it was announced that Denny Hamlin would drive the car for the remainder of the season, then run for Rookie of the Year.[11] Hamlin ran seven races, finished in the top 10 three times, and earned a pole at Phoenix International Raceway.[12]

Joey Logano (right) and Denny Hamlin (left) on pit road during the 2009 Coca-Cola 600.

Hamlin was awarded the #11 FedEx Express full-time ride in 2006 in addition to his full-time Busch schedule in the #20 Rockwell Automation Chevrolet. Hamlin was part of a large and strong rookie class, including teammate J.J. Yeley, Clint Bowyer, Martin Truex, Jr., David Stremme, Brent Sherman, and Reed Sorenson.[13] Hamlin opened the season by winning the Budweiser Shootout non-points race, holding off Dale Earnhardt, Jr. on a green-white-checker restart.[14] In June, Hamlin scored his first Cup Series victory at the difficult Pocono Raceway. Hamlin started on the pole, then battled back from a cut tire to take the victory.[15] In his return to the track in July, Hamlin again won the pole, then proceeded to lead all 200 laps en route to a second victory, the first rookie to sweep both Pocono races. Hamlin credited his prowess on the track to practicing on the racing simulator NASCAR Racing 2003 Season.[16] Hamlin's strong performance earned the rookie a berth in the Chase for the NEXTEL Cup, where he would finish 3rd in points. To date, Hamlin is the only rookie to make the Chase.

In 2007, Hamlin won the first of two races at New Hampshire International Speedway in 2007, and finished 12th in points. In 2008, Hamlin won the Gatorade Duel and the first race at Martinsville Speedway, and improved to eighth in points. He qualified for the Chase again in 2009 after winning the second race at Pocono Raceway and Richmond International Raceway. He ended the season with four victories after winning Martinsville and Homestead-Miami Speedway in the chase. 2010 was Hamlin and the 11 team's breakout year. They won at Martinsville and Denny followed the win by having knee surgery. After the surgery, the team won 4 of the next 10 races at Texas, Darlington, Pocono, and Michigan. The team made the chase after another win at Richmond. The team won races during the chase at Martinsville and Texas and held the points lead going into the season finale. However, an early wreck would put them behind the competition, and Hamlin wound up finishing second to Jimmie Johnson during the 2010 chase. Hamlin later admitted to putting too much pressure on himself during the Chase, which mentally impacted him. As a result, Mike Ford took a "no compromise" attitude for 2011, hoping to right the ship. However, the team struggled throughout 2011, with multiple blown engines and a single win at Michigan to push the #11 into the Chase. Hamlin would finish 9th in the final standings. At season's end, Mike Ford was released as crew chief and was replaced by Tony Stewart's crew chief Darian Grubb.

Under Darian Grubb the team started 2012 off in the best way possible by winning the second race of the season at Phoenix. That win was followed with another victory at Kansas six weeks later. The 11 team once again proved dominant on the short tracks pulling off a convincing win in the Bristol Night Race in August. The week after Bristol, the No. 11 FedEx team brought home another victory at Atlanta Motor Speedway, making the No. 11 the car number with the most wins in NASCAR with 200 wins. Hamlin then won the Sylvania 300, giving Joe Gibbs Racing its 100th win.

Hamlin at Las Vegas in 2012.

Hamlin's 2013 season began with an on-and-off track feud with former teammate Joey Logano. Initially started on Twitter, the on track incidents began at Bristol in March, where Hamlin spun Logano in turns 1 and 2, leading Logano to confront Hamlin after the race.[17] The rivalry continued into the next race at Auto Club Speedway, where the two fought for the lead in the closing laps. In the final corner, the two collided, allowing JGR teammate Kyle Busch to win the race, and sending Hamlin's 11 car into a non-SAFER barrier wall near pit road.[18] This wreck would mark the begging of a difficult season for Hamlin, as he suffered a lower back fracture and was forced to sit out several races. Veteran Mark Martin replaced Hamlin at one of Denny's better tracks, Martinsville Speedway, where he scored a top 10.[19] Brian Vickers then drove the car for the next three races, scoring an 8th place finish at Texas. Though Hamlin returned to the car at Talladega Superspeedway, he never returned to form during the year, with only 8 top 10s on the year.[20] He did score a win at the season finale at Homestead.

After Jason Leffler's death in 2013, the 11 team payed tribute to their former driver by running a white FedEx scheme at Michigan similar to the one Leffler ran in 2005. [21][22]

In the 2014 Auto Club 400, Sam Hornish, Jr. replaced Hamlin due to Hamlin having what was though to be sinus infection, but later revealed to be a piece of metal in his eye that impaired his vision.[23] Hornish, who was actually on standby for teammate Matt Kenseth, finished a solid 17th in his return to Cup.

Car #18 History[edit]

Joe Gibbs Racing debuted at the 1992 Daytona 500 with Dale Jarrett driving the #18 Interstate Batteries Chevrolet Lumina to a 36th place finish after a crash. The team improved dramatically the next year, when Jarrett won the Daytona 500, and finished a then career-high 4th in points.

Bobby Labonte's former JGR car on display at JGR headquarters.

Jarrett won a race at Charlotte but he slipped to 16th in points in 1994 which led to Bobby Labonte taking over the next season.

In 1995 Labonte won 3 races, sweeping Michigan and winning at Charlotte and finishing 10th in points started a decade of success between Labonte and Joe Gibbs Racing. In 1996 the team struggled to win until the season finale at Atlanta and finished 11th in points. In 1997 the team had a similar year to the previous but managed to improve to 7th in points. Their lone win came at the season finale. The team improved in 1998 by winning races at Atlanta and Talladega en route to 6th place in points.

1999 was a breakout year for the 18 team. They scored 5 wins which came at Dover, Michigan, Atlanta and both races at Pocono. The team came just short of the championship and finished 2nd in points. once again at Atlanta. In 2000 the team rebounded from the disappointments of finishing 2nd in 1999 to win the championships in 2000. The championship year included wins at Rockingham, Indianapolis, Darlington and Charlotte. The 18 team has failed to win a championship since this year.

The team faced disappointment in 2001 after high expectations following the championship season. Only 2 races were won at Pocono and Atlanta. He finished 6th in points. 2002 was the team's worst year since Labonte joined the team. After only scoring a win and Martinsville and finished a disappointing 16th in points. The team rebounded in 2003 scoring 2 wins at Atlanta and Homestead and finished 8th in points. The team failed to win races in 2004 and 2005 finishing 12th and 24th respectively. Even though the team made some progression in 2004, the team made a midseason firing of crew chief Michael McSwain, and Brandon Thomas took over for the rest of the season. Steve Addington, a Gibbs Busch Series crew chief, was named new crew chief for the 2005 season, but a rash of troubles, some caused by mechanical problems, continued to daunt the team, including a loss in the final turn at the Coca-Cola 600, led to the departure of Labonte following the end of 2005. In total, Labonte won 21 races in the car, and won the then Winston Cup championship in 2000. After Labonte's departure, Gibbs announced that Busch Series driver J. J. Yeley would replace Labonte in the #18 for 2006 and 2007. Yeley raced two seasons for Gibbs, and after failing to finish higher than 21st in points, he moved to Hall of Fame Racing.

Kyle Busch driving the #18 M&Ms car in the 2013 STP Gas Booster 500 at Martinsville

On August 14, 2007, Kyle Busch signed a contract to drive the number 18 with Joe Gibbs Racing through 2010. Mars, Inc. was signed as the team's primary sponsor, leaving Robert Yates Racing, as Interstate Batteries became a secondary sponsor and the team left the GM brands in favor of becoming Toyota's highest-profile team. Busch gave Toyota its first Cup win on March 9, 2008. Busch led a race-high 173 laps to win the Kobalt Tools 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. In his first year in the 18, Busch had brought the car back to its former glory, winning 7 other races at Talladega, Darlington, Dover, Infineon, Daytona, Chicagoland, and Watkins Glen all after only the first 23 races. In 2009 he won the Gatorade Duel, Las Vegas, Richmond and both Bristol races, but failed to qualify for the Chase by only 8 points. As a result, longtime JGR crew chief Steve Addington was fired near the end of the season, and coincidentally went to crew chief for Kyle's brother Kurt Busch at Penske Racing. Dave Rogers, Busch's Nationwide Series crew chief, took over the pit box in 2010. The year produced 3 victories at Richmond, Dover and Bristol, but another struggle in the final 10 races to finish 7th in the standings. 2011 was a definite up and down year for the 18 team. The team won at Bristol and Richmond early in the season, as well as the inaugural Cup race at Kentucky and the August race at Michigan. However, the team struggled through the beginning of the 2011 season, but pulled up to 4th after finishing 2nd at Charlotte. However, Busch was parked by NASCAR for intentionally spinning out Ron Hornaday in the Texas Truck race, and the ban extended to include the Nationwide and Cup series races at Texas. Hamlin and Michael McDowell would replace Busch that weekend, but the damage had been done. Mars pulled its sponsorship for the final two races, forcing JGR to run the #18 with its Interstate sponsorship. Busch struggled in those races and was relegated to tenth in the final standings.

In 2012, Busch had one points victory which he got at the Capital City 400. He also won the Budweiser Shootout to open the season. However, he didn't make the Chase by 3 points, but although he wasn't in the Chase, he got the best Chase ever with 7 top 5 and 8 top 10 finishes and he finished the year in 13th place nearly 100 points ahead of Ryan Newman who finished the year 14th.

In 2013, Busch returned to the #18. He won the second Budweiser Duel, and won the pole at Bristol. He also swept the Fontana and Texas race weekends, winning the Nationwide and Cup races, giving Joe Gibbs his first win at Fontana in Sprint Cup competition and first win for himself at Texas. Later, he finally won the race at Watkins Glen and got his second victory at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

Car #19 History[edit]

Joey Logano's #02 cars in 2008

Prior to expanding to four full-time cars, JGR had occasionally fielded a fourth car for R&D or driver development purposes. Mike Bliss drove several races for JGR in 2004, with the care numbered #80. In 2007, Aric Almirola made his NEXTEL Cup debut in the #80 car at Las Vegas. He was scheduled to drive at the All-Star Race and Coca-Cola 600, but he suffered a practice crash and the car was withdrawn from both races. In 2008, Joey Logano drove this car, renumbered as #02 (reverse of the 20), with The Home Depot sponsorship and a reverse scheme of teammate Tony Stewart's. He was to make his Sprint Cup debut at Richmond International Raceway, but qualifying was rained out by Tropical Storm Hanna and at Atlanta qualifying was rained out so he could not race. This car returned in 2009 with sponsorship from Farm Bureau Insurance, who had been banned from the Nationwide Series due to the Viceroy Rule. David Gilliland drove in the three races it ran. After the 2009 season, Farm Bureau Insurance announced they would not return for the 2010 season.

Elliott Sadler planned to drive the renumbered #81 (reverse of 18) Toyota Camry in 3 races in 2013, with his former sponsor at Robert Yates Racing, Mars, Inc., putting their new Alert Energy Caffeine Gum on the car. Sadler was scheduled to run at Kansas Speedway, Talladega Superspeedway and a third unannounced race. The deal was made in part to avoid conflict on the 18 car with Kyle Busch's sponsor Monster Energy.[24] For Sadler, it was his first start in the Sprint Cup Series since the 2012 Daytona 500, and his first opportunity since he was forced to turn down a part-time deal at Michael Waltrip Racing that same year (ultimately taken by 2013 teammate Brian Vickers) by then-owner Richard Childress. At Kansas, he got out of the racing groove and wrecked in turn 3 on lap 85, relegating him to a 40th place finish.[25] He failed to qualify at Talladega after rain washed out qualifying and was set by owner points as the #81 was too low in points. After Alert Energy was pulled from the market, Doublemint sponsored the car at Talladega.

After not running in 2014, the fourth car will return full-time in 2015 as the #19 with Carl Edwards driving. Arris Group will sponsor 19 races,[26] Stanley Black & Decker will sponsor 12 races,[27] leaving 7 races yet to be filled.

Car #20 History[edit]

Tony Stewart in his 2005 championship car at Sonoma Raceway

Tony Stewart debuted the #20 Home Depot car at the 1999 Daytona 500, qualifying on the outside pole. He won three races at Richmond, Phoenix and Homestead as well as the Winston Open and the NASCAR Rookie of the Year honors and finished 4th in points. 2000 was an up and down year for Stewart as he won six races, including both Dover races, Martinsville, New Hampshire, Michigan and Homestead but only finished 6th in points. 2001 was another good year for Stewart, as he won the Budweiser Shootout, Richmond, Infineon and Bristol and finished 2nd in the overall standings.

2002 was a break-out year for Stewart with wins at Atlanta, Richmond and Watkins Glen along with the Budweiser Shootout and the team won the 2002 championship. In 2003, Stewart won twice at Pocono and Charlotte and finished 7th in points. In 2004 the team had a similar year to 2003 with 2 wins and finished 6th in points in the first ever chase.

Stewart won his second championship in 2005. After winning the Gatorade Duel, the team didn't win again until Infineon and went on to win the Pepsi 400 at Daytona, New Hampshire, Indianapolis and Watkins Glen and held the championship through the Chase.

The #20 Home Depot machine as driven by Tony Stewart at Daytona International Speedway in 2008

2006 was Stewart's worst season statistically. After winning early at Martinsville, Stewart suffered an injury at Charlotte and was replaced during Dover. He won again at Daytona but missed the Chase. During the Chase, Stewart won 3 races at Kansas, Atlanta and Texas and finished 11th in points. 2007 was another good year for the team. Though Stewart won the Budweiser Shootout and Gatorade Duel, an early wreck smashed his Daytona 500 hopes. The team won 3 races though at Chicagoland, Indianapolis and Watkins Glen and finished 6th in points.

In 2008 Stewart struggled, getting a lot of second place finishes. On June 9, 2008, Stewart was granted a release from his final year of his contract with Joe Gibbs Racing and moved to Haas CNC Racing, renamed Stewart-Haas Racing due to Stewart's 50% ownership. On August 25, 2008, Joe Gibbs Racing announced Joey Logano would replace Stewart as the driver of the #20 car for the 2009 season in the Sprint Cup Series. Stewart won the 2008 AMP Energy 500 at Talladega during the Chase.

In 2009 Logano won the rain-shortened Lenox Industrial Tools 301 and won Rookie of the Year with seven top-ten finishes. The team finished 20th in points.

Logano failed to win in 2010 and finished 16th in points.

In 2011 Logano again was winless and finished 24th in points. On October 13, 2011, Joe Gibbs Racing announced The Home Depot will become co-primary sponsor for Logano's car with Dollar General. Dollar General is set to sponsor 12 races while the other 22 will continue to be sponsored by The Home Depot. The Home Depot had served as the sole primary sponsor of the #20 car since its debut with Tony Stewart in 1999. Logano won his second career race at Pocono from the pole in the 2012 Pocono 400 after passing Mark Martin with 3 laps to go.

Beginning in 2013, the #20 car was taken over by Matt Kenseth, who left Roush Fenway Racing, as Joey Logano moved to the #22 at Penske Racing. The team saw a resurgence, with Kenseth winning five races in the regular season (Las Vegas, Kansas, Darlington, Kentucky, and Bristol), and led the most laps at several other races (Daytona 500, Kansas, Richmond and Talladega). Kenseth also won the first two races of the Chase, bringing the team up to 7 wins - which was more wins in a single season than the car had ever achieved with Stewart or Logano.

It was announced in September 2014 that Stanley Black & Decker would leave Richard Petty Motorsports to sponsor JGR in the Cup Series for 2015. This move reunited Kenseth with long time sponsor DeWalt for six races as a primary, and the entire season as an associate.[28]

Nationwide Series[edit]

Car #11 History[edit]

What would become the #11 car debuted during the 2005 season as the #19 car at the CarQuest Auto Parts 300. It was driven by Bobby Labonte and sponsored by Banquet Foods. Labonte ran seven races that year, with three top-tens. With Labonte moving to Petty Enterprises, JGR development driver Aric Almirola ran the car in seven races in 2006. Tony Stewart also drove the car at select races in 2006, using his NEXTEL Cup crew when he raced. The #19 team was disbanded after the 2006 season.

The car returned as the #11 for 2011. JGR signed 22-year old Brian Scott (former driver of the #11 with Braun Racing) to a two year contract, with Kevin Kidd announced as the crew chief, and Scott bringing sponsorship from his family-owned Shore Lodge.[29][30] The new team was constantly hampered by bad luck during races, with 5 DNF's on the season. Scott earned a pole, two top 5's and seven top 10s, finishing 8th in points. For 2012, Dollar General expanded its sponsorship deal with JGR, sponsoring the #11 car for the full season.[31] Despite showing speed, the team continued to struggles finishing races (7 DNF's), and had a best finish of 3rd at Dover.

In 2013, Scott was replaced by veteran Elliott Sadler, who finished second in the championship standings in the two prior seasons. Sadler brought sponsorship from OneMain Financial with him from Richard Childress Racing.[32] After winning four races in 2012, Sadler went winless in 2013, though he did score 20 top 10's en route to a fourth place points finish. Sadler scored his first win for JGR at Talladega in 2014, leading a race high 40 laps.[33]

Car #18 History[edit]

The current 18 car came under Gibbs control when he purchased the #44 Shell Oil Pontiac from Labonte, who had been operating the team under his control. The team made its debut under the Gibbs banner at the 1998 NAPA Auto Parts 300 with Stewart driving, he qualified 9th but finished 31st after a crash. At the next week at Rockingham Speedway, Stewart qualified on the pole, led 60 laps and finished 2nd. Stewart ran a total of 22 races that year, with five top-five finishes and winning two pole positions. Labonte ran five races that year in that car in 1998, winning the Diamond Hill Plywood 200.

The team switched to #18 with sponsorship from MBNA for 1999, but Labonte ran only one race before he suffered shoulder injuries in a qualifying crash at Darlington. Late in the year, Jason Leffler ran four races in the car that year, his best finish being a 20th at Memphis Motorsports Park. Leffler ran the car full-time in 2000, winning a pole at Texas Motor Speedway, and posting three top-ten finishes. After that season, he left for the Cup Series with Chip Ganassi Racing, and Jeff Purvis took his place. Purvis started off strong and was seventh in points but was released after the GNC Live Well 250 because of sponsorship issues. Mike McLaughlin replaced him, finishing seventh in points that season. Despite going winless in 2002, he moved up to fourth place in points. However, owner Joe Gibbs wanted his son Coy in a full-time ride, leaving McLaughlin without a ride. In his rookie season, Gibbs had two top-ten finishes and finished runner-up to David Stremme for Rookie of the Year.

Kyle Busch in 2008.

Despite new sponsorship from Vigoro and The Home Depot, the team decided to run a part-time schedule in 2004, with Labonte returning for two races and J. J. Yeley running seventeen races, garnering four top-ten finishes. Yeley ran the car full-time in 2005, finishing in the top-ten twelve times and finishing 11th in points. Yeley continued to run full-time in 2006, finishing 5th in the points standings with 3 poles, 9 top 5's, 22 top 10's and 27 top 15's. Yeley announced in Daytona that he would be driving in the #1 Miccosukee Gaming and Resorts Chevrolet for Phoenix Racing in the 2007 NASCAR Busch Series. In late November, former Brewco Motorsports development driver Brad Coleman signed a contract to drive for Joe Gibbs Racing. Coleman ran 17 of the 35 NASCAR Nationwide Series races during the 2007 season, sharing the #18 Chevy with Tony Stewart, Aric Almirola, and Kevin Conway. Carino’s Italian Grill sponsored Coleman, while Z-Line Designs sponsored Conway and Goody's/ConAgra Foods sponsored Almirola and Tony Stewart. Almirola put the car on the pole at the season opener at Daytona, while Coleman earned his first career Busch Series pole at Talladega. Coleman returned to Brewco Motorsports and the #18 was piloted by the team of Hamlin and Busch with sponsorship coming from Southern Farm Bureau, Interstate Batteries, and Z-Line Designs. Despite running a partial schedule, Busch won ten races in 2008, eight in the #18, while Hamlin won once at Dover. Busch would finish seventh in points. In 2009, Kyle Busch won the Nationwide Series Championship driving the #18 Z-Line Designs / NOS Toyota.

In 2010, Kyle Busch ran most of the races that were paired with Sprint Cup Series races, while Brad Coleman returned to run the stand alone races.. For 2011, Busch drove the #18 for a majority of the season, splitting the ride with Michael McDowell, who ran both Iowa races, Lucas Oil Raceway, and the road courses Road America and Circuit Gilles Villeneuve with sponsorship from Pizza Ranch. McDowell won the pole at Road America and dominated until late race contact with another car. Drivers Kelly Bires, Drew Herring, and Joey Logano also took turns in the 18. Bires ran at Richmond and Chicago with International Comfort Products Corporation, Herring drove at the second Nashville race with Sport Clips, and Logano drove the 18 at Chicago, Dover, Kansas, and Phoenix. For 2012 the 18 would have a similar lineup, featuring Hamlin, Logano, Herring, McDowell, and Ryan Truex. Logano would take a whooping 7 victories with the 18 team, handing the team the Nationwide Owners' Championship. For 2013, the 18 and 20 teams swapped. Matt Kenseth drove the 18 for 16 races with sponsorship from Reser's Fine Foods and GameStop. He won the July race at Daytona and the October race at Kansas. The 18 car did not run in 2014.

On August 19, 2014, JGR announced Daniel Suárez will begin driving the No. 18 full-time in 2015 with sponsorship from Arris Group.[34]

Car #20 history[edit]

Denny Hamlin's #20 Busch car (right) battling Matt Kenseth (left) for position.

After JGR purchased the team from Gary Bechtel in 2000, the team got sponsorship from Porter-Cable. Despite missing three races, driver Jeff Purvis had eleven top-tens and one pole, finishing 11th in points. The team switched to #20 for 2001, and Mike McLaughlin was named the driver. Without a major sponsor, McLaughlin was able to win the Subway 300 and was sixth in points when Gibbs decided to shut down his team because of sponsorship problems. He moved to the 18, and finished seventh in points that year. Coy Gibbs ran five races in the #20 in 2002, with sponsorship from ConAgra Foods. His best finish was a 14th at Kentucky Speedway. After he moved to the 18, Gibbs was replaced by Mike Bliss and Rockwell Automation came aboard as sponsor. Bliss had fourteen top-tens and finished tenth in points. In 2004, he pulled off a win at Lowe's Motor Speedway and had three poles. In 2005, Denny Hamlin came aboard, and posted eleven top-ten's and finished fifth points, the third-place finisher in rookie points. He ran the full schedule in the #20 in 2006, winning twice and finishing 4th in points. Denny Hamlin and Aric Almirola drove the 20 in 2007 with Tony Stewart also piloting the #20 at Atlanta. Hamlin took the car to victory lane four times including Darlington, Milwaukee, Michigan, and Dover with Milwaukee being credited to Almirola for starting the race. The #20 finished 2nd in the owners points behind RCR's #29.

In 2008, the #20 was shared by Hamlin, Busch and Stewart for 9 races before defending NASCAR Camping World East Series champion Joey Logano was named the driver of the 20 for the rest of the season's races except for Loudon (which Stewart won in the #20), Daytona (which Hamlin won in the #20), and Chicago (which Busch won in the #18). All four drivers of the #20 won races driving it in 2008. In 2010, Joey Logano, Denny Hamlin and Matt DiBenedetto shared the #20 car, with Hamlin winning at Darlington and Logano winning at Kentucky and Kansas. For 2011, Logano returned to the #20 with sponsorship from GameStop and Sport Clips. Logano ran the first 10 races but picked up last minute sponsorship from Harvest Investments to run Nashville. Due to a lack of sponsorship, the 20 was unable to run a full schedule for the owners championship. In the 20, Logano grabbed his first superspeedway win at the July Daytona race with help from Kyle Busch. The 20 was also driven by Denny Hamlin at Las Vegas, Richmond, and Darlington, with Hamlin winning at Richmond. Drew Herring drove the 20 with Sport Clips at both Iowa races, where Herring won the pole for the May race, and Lucas Oil Raceway. Ryan Truex stepped into the 20 late in the season for six races, finishing second to Logano at Dover after dominating the race.

The 20 team returned in 2012 to run most of the season. Its primary driver lineup consisted of Logano, Hamlin, Truex, and JGR development driver Darrell Wallace, Jr. Michael Waltrip Racing driver Clint Bowyer also drove the #20 at Daytona when Hamlin was sidelined from the race by back problems.

Kenny Habul at Road America in 2014

Starting in the 2013 season, 2003 Busch Series Champion Brian Vickers joined the team driving the 20 for the full season with sponsorship from Dollar General, in addition to a partial Sprint Cup Series schedule in Michael Waltrip Racing's 55 car. Dollar General had sponsored Vickers in the past with Braun Racing, and like teammate Elliott Sadler, Vickers was attempting to reclaim his career in the second-tier series.[35] After 30 starts, Vickers was sidelined with a second incidence of blood clots, replaced by Denny Hamlin and Drew Herring in the final three races of the season.[36] Though he went winless, Vickers scored 13 top 5's and 18 top 10's to finish 10th in points. He would leave for a full-time ride at MWR at the end of the year.

In 2014, Matt Kenseth will drive the 20 car for 17 races with GameStop sponsoring 10 races and Reser's Fine Foods sponsoring 7 races.[37] Sam Hornish, Jr. and Kenseth each ran 1 race and Kenny Habul 2 races with Habul's Sun Energy 1 sponsoring.[38] Darrell Wallace, Jr. ran at Talladega in the spring with ToyotaCare and Daytona in July with Coca-Cola "Share a Coke". Daniel Suárez made his debut at RIR, finishing 19th. Michael McDowell ran at both Iowa races with Pizza Ranch. Denny Hamlin returned to the 20 at Chicagoland in September with Sport Clips, finishing 32nd after a blown engine.[39] Development driver Justin Boston, running the full ARCA schedule, made his debut in the 20 at Kentucky later in the month, with sponsor Zloop E-Recycling.[40]

2014 driver rotation
#20 Driver Races Sponsor
Matt Kenseth 18 Reser's Fine Foods, GameStop, Sun Energy 1
Michael McDowell 2 Pizza Ranch
Kenny Habul 2 Sun Energy 1
Darrell Wallace, Jr. 2 ToyotaCare, Share a Coke
Erik Jones 2, Reser's Fine Foods
Justin Boston 2 Zloop
Sam Hornish, Jr. 1 Sun Energy 1
Daniel Suárez 1 Silent Circle / Telcel
Denny Hamlin 1 Sport Clips

Car #54 History[edit]

This is JGR's 4th Nationwide team for 2013. After running the 54 for his own team in 2012 with only one win (by his brother Kurt), Kyle Busch returned to JGR's strong Nationwide program, running 26 races and bringing sponsor Monster Energy with him. Parker Kligerman would take over the newly renumbered 77 for KBM. Busch didn't take long to get to victory lane. He won the pole, lead the most laps, and won the race in only the second race of the 2013 season at Phoenix International Raceway. He too had won at Bristol Motor Speedway (4th race) and at Fontana (5th race). During the 2013 season, he won a total of 12 races.[1] Joey Coulter, Owen Kelly, and Drew Herring also ran in the 54, which finished 2nd in the owner's championship to the Team Penske No. 22 by one point.[41]

For the 2014 season, Kyle Busch will split the #54 car, running all Sprint Cup Series companion races. IRL champion Sam Hornish, Jr., who was not resigned by Team Penske after scoring a win and finishing 2nd in Nationwide points in 2013, would run 7 races to help compete for the owner's championship.[1] At Iowa in May, Hornish won the Get To Know Newton 250, beating Ryan Blaney's 22 for his third career win.[42]

Camping World Truck Series[edit]

Erik Jones in 2013.

From 2000 to 2002, Joe Gibbs fielded trucks numbered 20 and 48 in the then Craftsman Truck Series for his sons Coy and J.D. Gibbs, neither of whom are currently competitors in NASCAR. Coy ran 12 races in 2000, then the full 2001 and 2002 seasons, with 21 top 10's and 10th place points finishes in the latter two seasons. J.D. only ran a total of 8 races over the three seasons, with no top 10 finishes.

From 2004 to 2006, JGR drivers drove in the Truck Series for Chevrolet-affiliated Morgan-Dollar Motorsports, fielding Bobby Labonte, Tony Stewart, Denny Hamlin, and Aric Almirola in select races. In 2006, JGR contracted Spears Motorsports to field Almirola in their 75 truck for his rookie Truck season.[43] Almirola had 3 top 10's (compared to 2 top 10's in four starts the previous year), finishing 18th in points.[44]

JGR drivers currently compete in the Camping World Truck Series through Kyle Busch Motorsports, owned by Cup Series driver Kyle Busch. KBM uses JGR-built engines in competition.[45] Busch himself, along with Darrell Wallace, Jr, Erik Jones, Daniel Suárez, and Denny Hamlin currently drive for KBM.


Following the August 16, 2008 NASCAR Nationwide Series race at Michigan International Speedway, NASCAR used a dynometer to test the horsepower of several cars from all competing manufacturers. While testing the Joe Gibbs Racing cars, officials found that the throttle pedal on the two Joe Gibbs Racing cars had been manipulated using magnets a quarter-inch thick to prevent the accelerator from going 100 percent wide open. Joe Gibbs issued a statement saying "we will take full responsibility and accept any penalties NASCAR levies against us" and "we will also investigate internally how this incident took place and who was involved and make whatever decisions are necessary to ensure that this kind of situation never happens again.[46] Subsequently, NASCAR made regulation change specifically to Toyota, which mandated them to run a smaller restrictor plate to cut horsepower by estimated 15 to 20 horsepower (15 kW) from their engines. Toyota went on to win 20 of the 35 races in the season, 19 of them by Joe Gibbs Racing.

Motocross Team[edit]

On January 5, 2008 the Muscle Milk/Toyota/JGRMX Supercross/Motocross Team which was founded by Coy Gibbs debut at round one of the 2008 Supercross Series in Aneheim CA. In 2009 JGRMX rider Josh Grant won the opening round of the Supercross Series Championship at Angel Stadium.[47] The team has grown in numbers and in 2014 riders include Josh Grant and Phillip Nicoletti. Josh Grant runs the number 33. The team also has an amateur support program that just in its first year yielded numerous amateur national titles, including multiple titles for 16 year old star- Chase Bell.


  1. ^ a b c Spencer, Lee (January 5, 2014). "Sources: Hornish to share car with Kyle Busch in Nationwide Series". FOX Sports. Retrieved January 5, 2014. 
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  3. ^ Spencer, Lee (August 19, 2014). "It's official -- Carl Edwards and Daniel Suarez join JGR". Huntersville, North Carolina: Retrieved 1 September 2014. 
  4. ^ Newton, David (September 5, 2007). "Gibbs makes formal announcement on Toyota move". ESPN Sprint Cup. Huntersville, North Carolina: ESPN. Retrieved 1 September 2014. 
  5. ^ "Talladega II: News of note". October 10, 2004. Retrieved 22 September 2014. 
  6. ^ Joe Gibbs Racing (October 14, 2004). "JGR announces third car in 2005: FedEx To Sponsor Third Gibbs Car, Leffler Named as Driver". Charlotte, North Carolina: Retrieved 30 August 2014. 
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  46. ^ – Gibbs facing penalties for dyno 'cheat'
  47. ^

External links[edit]