Blake Koch

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Blake Koch
Blake Koch 2016 Road America.jpg
Koch at Road America in August 2016
Born (1985-08-07) August 7, 1985 (age 31)
West Palm Beach, Florida
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series career
6 races run over 2 years
2014 position 67th
Best finish 67th (2014)
First race 2013 Bank of America 500 (Charlotte)
Last race 2014 Ford EcoBoost 400 (Homestead)
Wins Top tens Poles
0 0 0
NASCAR Xfinity Series career
174 races run over 8 years
Car no., team No. 11 (Kaulig Racing)
2015 position 17th
Best finish 17th (2015)
First race 2009 Kroger On Track for the Cure 250 (Memphis)
Last race 2016 VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 (Kentucky)
Wins Top tens Poles
0 3 0
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series career
10 races run over 3 years
2014 position 109th
Best finish 100th (2012)
First race 2012 American Ethanol 225 (Joilet)
Last race 2014 WinStar World Casino & Resort 350 (Texas)
Wins Top tens Poles
0 0 0
Statistics current as of September 24, 2016.

Blake Koch (born August 7, 1985) is an American professional stock car racing driver. He currently competes full-time in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, driving the No. 11 Chevrolet Camaro for Kaulig Racing.

Personal life[edit]

Born in West Palm Beach, Florida, Koch currently resides in Huntersville, North Carolina with his wife Shannon and their son, Carter and daughter, Bailey.[1]

Koch is a Christian. Koch has spoken about his faith saying, "[God has] given me this platform that people listen to me and I feel like I have a great opportunity to tell people about Jesus through that."[2]

Racing career[edit]

Koch racing at Road America in 2011

Koch began his racing career at the age of 22 after he graduated from college with an associate degree in Marketing and Business Degree at Northwood University. Prior to racing on 4 wheels. Koch raced on 2 wheels and was considered one of the top 20 motorcross riders in the state of Florida. Koch raced 8 years until the end of 2008 when he made the transition to NASCAR. In 2009, He started racing in the NASCAR Camping World West Series. He finished 8th in the final point standings and finished runner up in the Rookie of the Year standings.[3] In 2011 He made his 1st Nationwide Series race at Phoenix and finished 17th and on the lead lap. He earned 4 top 20 finishes in 2011 and finished 18th in the final point standings.[4]

Koch planned to compete for Rick Ware Racing in the 2012 Nationwide Series driving the No. 41.[5] Partway through the season Koch was switched to the No. 15 when Timmy Hill returned to Nationwide competition, and soon afterwards was forced to switch to a limited schedule due to a lack of sponsorship.[1]

For 2013, Koch returned to SR² Motorsports, for which he had driven a limited start-and-park schedule late in 2012, to run most of the season in the team's No. 24 and No. 00 Toyotas.[6] In October, he made his debut in the Sprint Cup Series, driving for Leavine Family Racing at Charlotte Motor Speedway.[7]

After driving for RAB Racing in the 2013 Nationwide Series finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway, where he started on the outside pole, Koch moved to TriStar Motorsports for the full 2014 NASCAR Nationwide Series season (largely in a start and park role)[8] He also signed with Front Row Motorsports to drive the No. 35 Ford in the Sprint Cup Series for a limited schedule of races.[9] He also ran a handful of races for Go FAS Racing as well.[10]

Koch's 2015 Xfinity Series car at Road America

In 2015, Koch was given a full-time ride by TriStar Motorsports for the full Xfinity Series (formerly Nationwide Series) in the No. 8 Toyota with LeafFilter Gutter Protection as a primary sponsor.[11] Koch was leading with 6 laps to go in Road America when the battery died, resulting in a 20th-place finish. After the race Koch described the race as the closest he had come to winning in his entire career.

Koch at Texas Motor Speedway in 2016.

In 2016, LeafFilter owner Matt Kaulig left TriStar to start his own team, Kaulig Racing, with an alliance with Richard Childress Racing. Koch came over as well, running the full season in the No. 11 LeafFilter Gutter Protection Chevrolet.[12] Koch finished 9th at the season opener at Daytona, his first top-ten of his career. Koch later had decent races including a 12th place finish at Fontana. Koch got his best finish 8th at Richmond after avoiding the big crash.

ESPN controversy[edit]

Koch appeared in a commercial for the voting awareness organization Rise Up And Register; however, it was rejected by ESPN due to "religious and political overtones";[13] despite there being no religious messages in the commercial.[14] ESPN later issued a statement saying, "Koch’s personal religious beliefs played no role in our evaluation."[15]

Motorsports career results[edit]

NASCAR[edit]

(key) (Bold – Pole position awarded by qualifying time. Italics – Pole position earned by points standings or practice time. * – Most laps led.)

Sprint Cup Series[edit]

Xfinity Series[edit]

Camping World Truck Series[edit]

* Season still in progress
1 Ineligible for series points

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Moring, Mark (August 7, 2012). "NASCAR Driver Blake Koch Takes a Stand for Jesus". Christianity Today. Retrieved 2012-08-20. 
  2. ^ "God, Grace, and the Roar of Thunder". 
  3. ^ "About No. 81 « Daystar Racing". Daystarracing.com. Retrieved 2011-11-20. 
  4. ^ Blake Koch. "Blake Koch - NASCAR - Yahoo! Sports". Sports.yahoo.com. Retrieved 2011-11-20. 
  5. ^ Adamcyzk, Jay (January 20, 2012). "Koch joins Rick Ware Racing". Jayski.com. ESPN. Retrieved 2012-01-20. 
  6. ^ "Blake Koch Returning With SR² Motorsports". SPEED Channel. Fox Sports. February 7, 2013. Retrieved 2013-02-08. 
  7. ^ "Major Travis Kvapil and more news". Yardbarker. Fox Sports. October 10, 2013. Retrieved 2013-10-10. 
  8. ^ Estrada, Chris (January 10, 2014). "NNS: Jeffrey Earnhardt, Blake Koch land full-time rides". NBC Sports. Retrieved 2014-01-10. 
  9. ^ DiZinno, Tony (February 17, 2014). "Blake Koch gets Front Row Motorsports nod for Phoenix, Las Vegas". NBC Sports. Retrieved 2014-02-17. 
  10. ^ Knight, Chris (May 13, 2014). "Blake Koch Joins Go FAS Racing For Three Races; Return Set For Travis Kvapil". Catchfence.com. Retrieved May 19, 2014. 
  11. ^ Report, Staff (2015-05-02). "NNS: Koch Picks Up Primary Sponsor". NASCAR. Retrieved 2015-02-17. 
  12. ^ "KAULIG RACING™ INC. TO JOIN NASCAR XFINITY SERIES IN 2016". Kaulig Racing. January 20, 2016. Retrieved January 20, 2016. 
  13. ^ Diamond Joe's Media Rantz. "ESPN Blocks The Vote, Rejects NASCAR Driver's Ad Allegedly Due To "Religious Overtones"". Sportsrantz.com. Retrieved 2012-03-31. 
  14. ^ Gluck, Jeff (March 29, 2012). "ESPN Declines To Air NASCAR Sponsor Commercial Due To 'Advocacy'". SBNation. Vox Media. Retrieved 2013-10-11. 
  15. ^ Pockrass, Bob (March 29, 2012). "Nationwide driver loses sponsor after ESPN rejects commercial". Sporting News. Retrieved 2013-10-11. 

External links[edit]