No. 88 crew chief Greg Ives fined, others receive warnings post-Kansas
NASCAR officials handed down a P2 penalty to the No. 88 Hendrick Motorsports team for not having lug nuts properly installed during Sunday's Hollywood Casino 400 at Kansas Speedway . The infraction also brought a fine of $10,000 to Greg Ives, crew chief of the No. 88 Chevrolet. The No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing team received a written warning and a loss of 15 minutes practice time for failing pre-race LIS three times. The cars of Carl Edwards , Kyle Larson and Martin Truex Jr . failed pre-race LIS twice and received written warnings. The cars of Austin Dillon and Regan Smith failed pre-race template inspection twice and received written warnings. Cole Whitt 's No. 55 Chevrolet failed pre-qualifying LIS twice and received a written warning. The cars of Jamie McMurray and Martin Truex Jr . failed pre-qualifying template inspection twice and received written warnings. Other warnings issued after last weekend's events at Kansas Speedway : The XFINITY Series cars of Cole Custer and Brandon Brown failed pre-race LIS twice and received written warnings. Also, the cars of Brennan Poole and Derrike Cope failed pre-race template inspection three times and received written warnings.
Brandon Jones excited about partnering with sponsor Nexteer
Brandon Jones talks about Richard Childress Racing's partnership with Nexteer and looking toward a successful future with them on the No. 33 Chevrolet.
Brandon Jones extends deal with RCR in XFINITY
WELCOME, N.C. -- Brandon Jones , 2016 NASCAR XFINITY Series Chase contender and Rookie of the Year candidate, has signed an agreement to remain with Richard Childress Racing (RCR) as the driver of the No. 33 Chevrolet Camaro in the XFINITY Series for the 2017 season. " Brandon has shown he has the talent behind the wheel to run up front and compete for championships in the XFINITY Series, and we are pleased he will continue to do so in an RCR Chevrolet," said Richard Childress, Chairman and CEO of RCR. "We are proud of everything he has accomplished this season, including leading laps, making the inaugural XFINITY Series Chase and contending for the Rookie of the Year title. Brandon has also been an excellent spokesman for our sponsors and does an exceptional job representing our brand. We can't wait to see what Brandon can do in his second full XFINITY Series season." In his first full year with RCR, Jones has recorded 11 top-10 finishes through the first 26 races and earned a spot in the XFINITY Series Chase. The 19-year-old driver scored an impressive sixth-place finish at Las Vegas Motor Speedway , and also led 36 laps at Talladega Superspeedway in April. "I am honored to return to Richard Childress Racing for the 2017 season," Jones said. "RCR is such a storied NASCAR organization and it's a great opportunity to be a part of the team. Racing full-time in the XFINITY Series this season has been a valuable learning experience. I believe we have what it takes to compete for the championship throughout the Chase this season and make another run at the title in 2017. The teamwork and support from RCR, ECR Engines and Chevrolet have been second to none and instrumental in my development as a driver. I've also enjoyed representing several partners including Menards, Nexteer, Chevrolet, Okuma, Cometic, Roland and Rain-X." Before joining RCR as a full-time driver in 2016, Jones ran five XFINITY Series races in 2015, earning one top-five and two top-10 finishes, along with 16 laps led. The Atlanta, Georgia, native, has 30 starts in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, recording five top-five and 11 top-10 finishes. He also has one NASCAR K&N East Series win and three ARCA Racing Series victories.
Preview Show: Talladega
Marty Snider and Chris Rice preview the upcoming weekend at Talladega Superspeedway as drivers prepare to battle in the last race of the Round of 12.
Chase driver Brandon Jones involved in costly incident
Brandon Jones is involved in a costly incident with Justin Marks, becoming the first Chase driver sent to the garage at Kentucky Speedway.
Who will survive the Talladega madness?
Marty Snider and Chris Rice pick which drivers have the best chance to advance to the Round of 8 at Talladega Superspeedway, in the second elimination race of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup
Heads up: Kansas weekend
Here are the hot topics, trending news and key story lines to get you ready for this weekend's races at Kansas Speedway . WEATHER The good news? It doesn't appear likely that a hurricane will impact this weekend's racing at Kansas. The highest chance of precipitation is around 20 percent, according to Weather.com. Otherwise, we're looking at consistent temps hovering around 81 degrees most of Saturday and Sunday, while it will be mostly cloudy and a little cooler (70 degrees) when cars roll on Friday, according to the National Weather Service. KEY TIMES Sprint Cup Series: The Sprint Cup Series holds its first practice Fri d ay at 1 p.m. ET (NBCSN/NBC Sports App), with Coors Light Pole qualifying at 6:15 p.m. ET (NBCSN/NBC Sports App). The Hollywood Casino 400 is at 2:15 p.m. ET Sunday (NBC/NBC Sports App, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). XFINITY Series: The XFINITY Series opens practice Friday at 2:30 p.m. ET (NBCSN/NBC Sports App) and qualifies Saturday at noon ET (CNBC/NBC Sports App). The Kansas Lottery 300 is Saturday at 3 p.m. ET (NBC/NBC Sports App, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). CATCH DRIVERS LIVE We'll stream every driver press conference in the Kansas media center at NASCAR.com/presspass. Click here for a full schedule. Click here to tune into the live stream . LAST TIME Like last week, Joey Logano is the defending race winner. The Team Penske driver led 42 of 269 laps to secure a victory in the middle of his three-race sweep of the Round of 12 (Charlotte, Kansas and Talladega) last season. In fact, he has won this race the past two years. YOU SHOULD KNOW • Joey Logano had three times as many wins in the Round of 12 last year than he does in all of 2016 (one). In need of a stellar finish -- if not a win -- after limping to a 36th-place finish at Charlotte, Logano certainly isn't hurting for motivation this weekend and Kansas lines up well for the prospects of regaining his mojo. The Penske driver has won two of the past four races at Kansas and had a top-five streak of five races snapped in the spring race (38th). • Despite winning the race with driver Kyle Busch , the spring event at Kansas didn't favor Toyota as we've seen much of this year, placing just two drivers (Busch and Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Matt Kenseth ) in the top 10. After the pair was the only set of Toyotas in the top 10 at Charlotte, as well, this trend could continue. But then again -- it wouldn't be a shock to see either of those drivers win and advance. • Some XFINITY Series heavy hitters were knocked out of the Round of 12 after failing to advance at Charlotte in Ty Dillon , Brennan Poole , Brandon Jones and Ryan Sieg . In the series' first Chase, it'll be interesting to observe how teams adjust after seeing firsthand (in some cases) how a subpar opening round race can put a group in a serious, unrecoverable hole -- quickly.
Kyle Busch wins at Kansas; XFINITY Chase gets shake-up
RELATED: Race results " Standings " Chase Grid " Photos from the day SHOP: Busch gear KANSAS CITY, Kan. -- Kyle Busch 's domination of Saturday's Kansas Lottery 300 at Kansas Speedway was about the only predictable thing that happened in the first race of the Round of 8 in the inaugural NASCAR XFINITY Series Chase. In winning his fourth XFINITY race at the 1.5-mile track, his ninth of the season and the 85th of his career -- extending his own series record -- Busch led 150 of 200 laps, passing Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Daniel Suarez after a restart with 13 circuits remaining. "It was a hard-fought battle," said Busch, who had surged to a lead of 7.961 seconds before the first caution slowed the field on Lap 57. "Seemed like it was going to be easy for us. We had a super-fast car, and when we were out front, I could take it easy on those long runs and we could drive away. "The car would turn so well. A lot of things were trying to work against us at the end of the race. We were able to persevere and do the right things and have lucky restarts and be in the right grooves and not get caught up in the melee that was happening." Suarez had reason to be elated with his eventual third-place finish. An unexplained "popping" sound in his No. 19 Toyota accompanied a loss of horsepower, and Suarez settled for a hard-won result after Elliott Sadler passed him in the closing laps for the runner-up spot. Because Suarez led laps and Sadler didn't, he and Sadler leave Kansas tied for the Chase lead, but Sadler owns the tie-breaker due to higher finishes. "I'm proud of my race team," Sadler said. "We just kept working on the car and getting it better and better. I've got to do a better job trying to outrun that 18 car (Busch). He's really good, and he knows how to manipulate the air. But I've got to keep trying." Blake Koch finished ninth -- third among Chase drivers -- despite a late flat tire, the adverse effect of which was diminished by a timely caution, one of 10 during the afternoon. Koch is seven points behind the two Chase leaders. Chaos gobbled up the remaining five Chase contenders. A tap from Brandon Jones turned Chaser Justin Allgaier sideways and ignited a six-car wreck that also eliminated Darrell Wallace Jr ., who crashed out in 33rd-place. In a severely damaged car, Allgaier soldiered to a 14th-place result and left Kansas tied with Erik Jones for the final transfer spot into the Championship 4 race at Homestead-Miami Speedway . Jones ran up front through the vast majority of the race, but his No. 20 Toyota was turned into the Chevrolet of Ty Dillon when NASCAR Sprint Cup Series regular Kyle Larson made an aggressive move after a restart on Lap 183. Jones pitted with a cut tire and finished one position behind Allgaier, one lap down. "He (Larson) said it was his fault," Jones said after talking to Larson on pit road. "He owned up to it, got me ran over. It is what it is… He just said he got a good start and there was no hole there, nowhere to go with the run he had just got into my left rear and turned us. It's a shame, we both had fast cars." Ryan Reed salvaged a 16th-place finish despite a loose plug wire that kept him down on power until his team could troubleshoot the problem on pit road. After contact in heavy traffic on Lap 176, Brendan Gaughan took a wild spin through the infield grass and came home 31st, 18 laps down. Both Wallace and Gaughan will have yeoman work to do when the Chase resumes at Texas Motor Speedway after a two-week break for the O'Reilly Auto Parts Challenge (Nov. 5, 3:30 p.m. ET, NBC, PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). &amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;/p&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;
Brandon Jones, Brendan Gaughan get 'Annoying'
Richard Childress Racing drivers Brandon Jones and Brendan Gaughan are taking their talents to YouTube. The pair of NASCAR XFINITY Series drivers made guest appearances in the hit online show "Annoying Orange," which is certainly among the most unique things you'll ever see. And, well, just watch.
Experience surrounds Brandon Jones' rise at RCR
RELATED: Series standings " See how the XFINITY Chase Grid looks Photo credit: (HHP/Gregg Ellman) For any rookie there is always a bit of a learning curve, but for Brandon Jones he has several veterans surrounding him to help guide the way in his first full NASCAR season. One of the younger drivers in the garage, 19-year-old Jones pilots the No. 33 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet in the NASCAR XFINITY Series. He's fifth in the standings with seven top 10s ahead of next weekend's Subway Firecracker 250 (July 1 at 7:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). At RCR, Jones has a stable of teammates with a variety of experience in Brendan Gaughan (No. 62 Chevrolet) and the brothers Dillon, Ty (No. 3 Chevrolet) and Austin (No. 2 Chevrolet) as well as Paul Menard (No. 2 Chevrolet) to lean on for advice and guidance. "The biggest thing everybody's helped me out with is not coming so much to the tracks I've been to in the past, but the tracks that we haven't seen so far," Jones said at Iowa Speedway last week . "People like Brendan and all the teammates really they help me out a lot. We've got a lot of notes from previous years from everybody that goes to driver debriefs so I have that to kind of go over and look through. They are just always there to help me out if they see something." Gaughan, who has 20 years of NASCAR experience, shares an easy rapport with the young Jones as evidenced by their willingness to play off their similar first names and their exchange when the elder statesman of the RCR team asked Jones how old he was during a recent press conference. When Jones answered, 40-year-old Gaughan buried his head in his hand. Just past halfway in the regular season of the XFINITY Series, Gaughan likes what he has seen from Jones. "When he goes out and runs top 10 just about every week, it's not like you need to keep giving him a lot of coaching," Gaughan said. "You just want to try to keep the head on straight, keep him pointed in the right direction -- and he does a good job of that already to begin with." Jones also has the experience to draw on from crew chief Mike Hillman Jr. atop his pit box. Hillman comes from a racing background but he used another sport to describe how the young driver gets ready, especially for a track that's new to him. Coming into this season, Jones, a Georgia native, had 30 NASCAR national series starts split between the XFINITY Series and Camping World Truck Series. "It's kind of like being a quarterback; he watches a lot of game film, a lot of in-car camera stuff and the races that have been run at the racetracks before to try and be on top of it before we ever get here," Hillman told NASCAR.com at Iowa. Hillman notices the cool and calm demeanor with which Jones carries himself. The duo bonded away from the track as well and Hillman, age 37 and a father of three, has welcomed Jones into his family. "To have the age difference between the two of us, but to have a lot of things in common and enjoy a lot of things outside of racing, it's really cool to be able to hang out and grow together," Hillman said. Hillman, a New York native, brings a wealth of experience and knowledge from working primarily in the Camping World Truck Series and winning two championships with Todd Bodine , as well as working with young drivers such as Kyle Larson , Jeb Burton , Cameron Hayley and Ben Rhodes . Last season, Hillman was atop the pit box for Brian Scott and the No. 2 team at RCR in the XFINITY Series. Under Hillman's guidance, Jones is in a comfortable position to be one of the 12 drivers competing in the debut of the NASCAR XFINITY Series Chase, which begins Sept. 24 at Kentucky Speedway . While Jones has been consistent in averaging a finish of 11.4 -- fifth-best among XFINITY Series regulars -- he has yet to record a top-five finish in 2016, and has been out front for just 36 laps (all coming at Talladega in April) . Those are among the next steps Hillman wants to see Jones make as the series gets closer to the postseason. "We have to take our eighth-, ninth- and 10th-place finishes and make them fourth, fifths and sixths," Hillman said. "And then once we do that, we can start making them firsts, seconds and thirds, and just take it a step at a time. Hopefully, if we keep doing that and progressing the way we are, by the time we get to the Chase, we're in a spot to be in contention."