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JR Motorsports Ready to Sweep Daytona

JR Motorsports Ready to Sweep Daytona

by July 3, 2014 0 comments

Photo Credit: Rainier Ehrhardt/Getty Images

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — JR Motorsports are preparing to complete a season sweep at the Daytona International Speedway.

Regan Smith, Chase Elliott, and Kasey Kahne will bring their JRM Camaros to Daytona this week looking for the win in the Subway Firecracker 250 – the 16th race of the 2014 NASCAR Nationwide Series season.

Smith, the winner in the DRIVE4COPD 300 in February, is seeking the season sweep at Daytona and his second win of the season. The driver of the No. 7 Goody’s Camaro led 35 of 121 laps in his season-opening victory and heads to the site of his lone victory of the year looking to claw some points back in the Drivers’ Standings after finding himself eight points out of the lead.

“It’s no secret the past two weeks have been disappointing for us,” Smith said. “But in racing all you can do is move on. We have another great opportunity in front of us with Daytona and the Goody’s Chevrolet this weekend. Going back there as the spring race winner really does a lot for our team in terms of positivity.”

Smith, however, is aware that even though he has had success at the track earlier in the year and won at Talladega last year in the No. 7 machine, he will still have to work hard for a win on Friday night. After all, at Daytona – anything can happen.

“Still, nothing is guaranteed in restrictor plate races,” Smith continued. “Our team has had success at Daytona and Talladega in the past, but no matter what you’ve done, it’s still a bit of an unknown. These types of races always are.”

Elliott will make his second career start at Daytona on Friday night. The driver of the No. 9 NAPA Auto Parts Camaro’s debut at the 2.5-mile superspeedway provided the rookie with a 15th-place finish in February. Elliott was unable to better his February result at Talladega as he would finish 19th after taking some damage in a late caution in the Aaron’s 312. The current second-place driver in the series will be looking to rewrite his brief Nationwide Series history at restrictor plate courses with a strong run that could provide the rookie with some momentum heading into the second half of the season.

“I’m just pumped to have the opportunity race Daytona on the weekend of the fourth,” Elliott said. “It’s always been one of my favorite races to watch growing up around the sport. The first two restrictor plate races haven’t been very good on my part so hopefully I can learn from them and improve this trip.”

Making his second start in the series this year for JR Motorsports, Kahne will be looking to make it to the finish of this race and record a strong result at the same time. Kahne’s lone start in the No. 5 Great Clips Camaro this year resulted in an early exit for the Enumclaw, Washington native after he would crash out in the same incident his teammate, Elliott, was involved in on Lap 113. Kahne returns to a track that he has 18 career starts in in the Nationwide Series with two of the starts resulting in top-five finishes and eight of those starts resulting in top-10s.

Kahne will strap in to the car that won last Friday’s race at the Kentucky Speedway with Kevin Harvick behind the wheel. The 13th-year Nationwide Series driver will be looking to carry the momentum gained by the No. 5 team in Kentucky to the high banks of Daytona where he will be looking to record his first career victory at the track.

“What the JR Motorsports teams have accomplished this season has been fun to watch,” Kahne said. “I haven’t been in the No. 5 since Talladega so I’m looking forward to keeping the momentum going from their win last weekend. We had a good run going at Talladega and got caught up in a wreck, but I think we learned a lot as a team that will help if we can get ourselves in position to win at the end.”

The action for the weekend kicks off with a single two-hour practice session held on Thursday afternoon.

Kyle Pokrefky
Follow Kyle Pokrefky on Twitter at @KPokrefky

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