New Contract Settled, Brandon Jones Turns Focus Towards Chaseby Kyle Pokrefky September 23, 2016 0 comments
Brandon Jones enters Saturday night’s VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 at Kentucky Speedway with a clear mind as he prepares for the NASCAR XFINITY Series’s inaugural Chase.
The rookie driver out of Atlanta re-signed with Richard Childress Racing this past week and is to return to the seat of the No. 33 Chevrolet Camaro for the 2017 XFINITY campaign.
With his new contract in hand, the driver of the No. 33 Nibco/Menards machine feels that he enters the opening round of the Chase with significantly less pressure than before.
“I think that’s a huge weight lifted off of anybody’s shoulders there, for sure,” Jones said on Tuesday. “Making the Chase also with these two things coming out – I’m tickled to death, all smiles from me this couple of weeks here.
“I knew we were negotiating with RCR again for 2017 and they’ve really been stepping their program up in both XFINITY and Cup and I really like how they have both series there too. I feel like it’s a long-term place. In the future we’ll look at that later and next year, but in the future they do have everything to do.”
The three-time winner in the ARCA Racing Series ranks enters Kentucky as the 11th seed in the Chase.
In the regular season, Jones had 11 top-10s to his credit with a best finish of sixth coming at Las Vegas Motor Speedway in March.
Laying out his strategy for the opening round, Jones expects to carry his consistency into the first round of the Chase before transitioning to a more aggressive approach should he transfer into the Round of 8.
“All in all, we locked ourselves in pretty easily this first round and I think these top-10s we’ll just wear those out for this first round and get inside that top-five and easily transfer over to the next round,” Jones said. “Then we’ll start looking at taking chances on pit road to get a win and get something crazy.
“We’re going to get better for sure, but that’s what it’s going to take to get inside that top-four for Homestead.”
Photo Credit: Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images