Jeffrey Earnhardt signed a multi-year deal starting with the 2016 season to drive in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series with Go FAS Racing. Earnhardt , 26, will pilot the No. 32 Ford Fusion and Can-Am will be on board to serve as a primary sponsor for 11 events and an associate-level partner for all other events in 2016. "I'm really excited to join GFR," Earnhardt said in a release provided by the team. "I'm thrilled to have Can-Am on board as our partner for 2016. I'm an avid outdoorsman and their products are the gold standard for outdoor sports, so it's a perfect fit. With Can-Am supporting our team we're certain to increase our competitiveness throughout the 2016 season." Earnhardt will compete for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Sunoco Rookie of the Year award. Veteran driver Bobby Labonte will also drive several events in the No. 32 Ford. "We are all really excited about this new partnership with Can-Am and Jeffrey Earnhardt for 2016", team owner Archie St. Hilaire said in a release. "This deal will improve our program and make us much more competitive in the upcoming season while giving Jeffrey all the tools he needs to succeed at this level. 2016 can't come soon enough for myself and everyone at GFR." The Mooresville, North Carolina native made his Sprint Cup debut at Richmond earlier this month, finishing 40th in the Federated Auto Parts 400 . He was on the entry list for the Sylvania 300 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway (Sept. 27, 2 p.m. ET, NBCSN, PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). For his career, Earnhardt has made 66 starts in the NASCAR XFINITY Series and 10 starts in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. Earnhardt is the grandson of the late Dale Earnhardt , nephew of Dale Earnhardt Jr . and the son of Kerry Earnhardt . Kerry made seven starts in the Sprint Cup Series, 72 starts in the XFINITY Series and 27 starts in the Camping World Truck Series. The Richmond race that Jeffrey ran marked the first time two Earnhardts were competing in the Sprint Cup Series in over a decade. The team also announced in a release that Go Green Racing will be competing under the Go FAS banner starting with Daytona Speedweeks in 2016.
Two Earnhardts will be competing in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series for the first time in over a decade as Jeffrey Earnhardt will pilot the No. 32 Ford for Go Green Racing at Richmond International Raceway for the Federated Auto Parts 400 on Sept. 12 (7:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). The start at Richmond will be the 26-year-old's first in the sport's premier series. He has made 66 starts in the NASCAR XFINITY Series (including six starts this season) as well as 10 career starts in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. The announcement was first made on NBCSN's "NASCAR America." "I'm really excited to get this opportunity and thrilled that CorvetteParts.net is sponsoring my debut in Sprint Cup ," Earnhardt said in a team release. "The Keens have been very good to me and having their company be part of an important day in my career is pretty cool. I appreciate everyone at Go Green Racing for making this happen and look forward to doing my best to make it a good debut." Jeffrey and his uncle Dale Earnhardt Jr . have never raced against one another in the Sprint Cup Series. They have, however, raced against each other a handful of times in the XFINITY Series. Jeffrey made one start for the Dale Jr.-owned JR Motorsports in 2013 in the XFINITY Series at Richmond. Jeffrey's father, Kerry Earnhardt , has seven career Sprint Cup starts and drove one full XFINITY Series season in 2002 for owner Armando Fitz in the No. 12 Chevrolet. He had 72 XFINITY Series starts over 10 years. Kerry Earnhardt also drove full time in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series in 2006, finishing the season 22nd in the standings.
Former Joe Gibbs Racing tire changer Nick Odell has signed a deal with Hendrick Motorsports that will make him a member of the No. 24 pit crew, the team confirmed. Odell drew interest from several teams after he was released by JGR last week. He was a longtime front tire changer for the No. 18 Toyota driven by Kyle Busch . Scott Brzozowski was the front tire changer for the No. 24 team. He came to Hendrick Motorsports after working with the No. 39 crew of Ryan Newman at Stewart-Haas Racing . Brzozowski will move from the No. 24 team to the No. 88 team of Dale Earnhardt Jr . as its starting front tire changer. Brzozowski will replace David Mayo, who will return to a backup role. The roster moves are in effect starting at Dover. It's the second tweak to Earnhardt's pit crew in the past month. The changes to the No. 18 team last week came after changes to several teams in Chase contention, including the No. 88 pit crew, the No. 2 crew for Brad Keselowski 's Ford and the No. 78 group that services Martin Truex Jr .'s Chevrolet. For more pit crew information, visit PitTalks.com .
RELATED: Final practice results " Practice 2 results Kevin Harvick set the pace in the final NASCAR Sprint Cup Series practice Saturday, putting his Stewart-Haas Racing No. 4 Chevrolet atop the leaderboard at New Hampshire Motor Speedway . Harvick turned a lap of 134.577 mph around the relatively flat 1.058-mile track. The defending Sprint Cup champion is set to start second in Sunday's Sylvania 300 (2 p.m. ET, NBCSN, PRN, SiriusXM), the second event in the 10-race Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup postseason. The top five on the speed chart was swept by Chase-eligible drivers. Kyle Busch landed the second spot on the leaderboard at 134.150 mph in the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 18 Toyota. Brad Keselowski was third-best at 134.032 mph in the Team Penske No. 2 Ford, with Jimmie Johnson fourth (133.943) in the Hendrick Motorsports No. 48 Chevrolet. Coors Light Pole winner Carl Edwards , who was fastest in the first two practices, completed the top five in the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 19 Toyota. Edwards also posted the fastest 10-lap average at 133.149, leading fellow JGR drivers Busch and Denny Hamlin in the top three over the longer haul. Hamlin won last week's Chase opener at Chicagoland Speedway , etching his name in the Contender Round, the next three-race stage of the 10-race playoffs. Hamlin, a two-time New Hampshire winner, was seventh-fastest on the leaderboard. Defending race winner Joey Logano was 11th-fastest in the 50-minute session. Edwards pours it on in Practice 2 Coors Light Pole Award winner Carl Edwards soared to the top of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series leaderboard Saturday morning, setting the pace in second practice at New Hampshire Motor Speedway . Edwards backed up his pole-winning speed from Friday by circling the 1.058-mile track at a lap of 133.516 mph in the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 19 Toyota. He also led opening practice in preparation for Sunday's Sylvania 300 (2 p.m. ET, NBCSN, PRN, SiriusXM), the second race in the 10-race Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup playoffs. Edwards' only misstep was a slight scrape of the outside retaining wall with 10 minutes left in the 55-minute session. He resumed practice with the car showing little sign of damage. RELATED: Edwards claims Coors Light Pole Award Defending Sprint Cup champion Kevin Harvick was second-fastest in the second practice, clocking a lap of 133.427 mph in the Stewart-Haas Racing No. 4 Chevrolet. He was followed by Team Penske teammates Brad Keselowski and Joey Logano in third and fourth respectively. Harvick's SHR teammate Kurt Busch completed the top five. Denny Hamlin , Edwards' JGR teammate and last week's winner at Chicagoland Speedway , was eighth-fastest. Harvick set the fastest 10-lap average at 132.412 mph. He was followed by Keselowski, Jimmie Johnson , Dale Earnhardt Jr . and Hamlin in the top five in that category. The practice was halted at the 22-minute mark after Jeffrey Earnhardt smacked the Turn 3 wall in the GoFAS Racing No. 32 Ford. Earnhardt told NBC Sports that he locked up the brakes over bumps on the backstraight entering the corner.
Jeffrey Earnhardt comments on making his first start for JR Motorsports this weekend and what an honor it is to carry on the Earnhardt legacy.
RELATED: Complete Richmond results 1. Matt Kenseth , No. 20 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . Kenseth dominated on Saturday, leading 352 of 400 laps and winning his fourth race of the year. 2. Kyle Busch , No. 18 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . Despite a late-race vibration, Busch picked up his sixth top-five result of the year. 3. Joey Logano , No. 22 Ford, Team Penske . The pole sitter led 25 laps on Saturday and complained that eventual race winner Matt Kenseth jumped the final restart without penalty. 4. Aric Almirola , No. 43 Ford, Richard Petty Motorsports . Almirola, desperate for a win and a second career Chase berth, was turning heads as he raced his way into the top 10 on Saturday. Jeff Gordon radioed, "Is that (No.) 43 for position?" while Almirola raced him for seventh. 5. Dale Earnhardt Jr ., No. 88 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . Unhappy with his car in practice on Friday, Earnhardt started 29th and climbed through the field, cracking the top five with 80 laps to go. 6. Denny Hamlin , No. 11 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . Playing hurt with an ACL tear, Hamlin briefly paced the Joe Gibbs Racing parade around Richmond, leading Laps 126-138 on Saturday night. 7. Jeff Gordon , No. 24 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . Although winless so far in his final season, Gordon punched his 11th Chase ticket by finishing better than 17th. 8. Brad Keselowski , No. 2 Ford, Team Penske . Keselowski recovered from a pit road speeding penalty during the fifth caution period to record his 18th top-10 of the year. 9. Jimmie Johnson , No. 48 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . Johnson was carving his way through the field when crew chief Chad Knaus radioed, "Jimmie, I don't know what you're doing when you pass somebody, but you run your fastest laps when you're passing someone." 10. Clint Bowyer , No. 15, Michael Waltrip Racing . Bowyer cracked the top 10 on Lap 315, and he held on to his Chase berth thanks to repeat race winner Kenseth. 11. Carl Edwards , No. 19 Toyota, Joe Gibbs Racing . Edwards was running in the top four with his teammates on Lap 145, but lost several spots after his team made a big adjustment during the Lap 209 stop. 12. Kyle Larson , No. 42 Chevrolet, Chip Ganassi Racing . It was a frustrating night for Larson who, yet again, missed a Richmond top-10 on top of not qualifying for the Chase. 13. Jamie McMurray , No. 1 Chevrolet, Chip Ganassi Racing . By simply rolling off the grid 31st on Saturday night, McMurray locked up his first career Chase berth. 14. Kevin Harvick , No. 4 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . Harvick's pit crew had back-to-back issues lifting the left side of the No. 4 Chevy and resorted to tweaking the jack for subsequent stops. 15. Kurt Busch , No. 41 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . Busch struggled to make forward progress as his team hunted for forward drive off Turn 4. 16. Ricky Stenhouse Jr ., No. 17, Roush Fenway Racing . Stenhouse lined up 15th for the Lap 296 restart and was continually among the cars battling for the beneficiary pass. 17. David Ragan , No. 55 Toyota, Michael Waltrip Racing . At the halfway point, Ragan reported that his car refused to turn after 10 green-flag laps. 18. Kasey Kahne , No. 5 Chevrolet, Hendrick Motorsports . After reporting a lack of front grip late in the race, Kahne was pretty quiet on the radio as he watched his Chase hopes fade. 19. Danica Patrick , No. 10 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . Patrick had a minor setback when she was clocked too fast on pit road during the second caution period. 20. Ryan Newman , No. 31 Chevrolet, Richard Childress Racing . Despite a frustrating night, Newman still punched his ticket to the Chase because he finished better than 31st. 21. Casey Mears , No. 13 Chevrolet, Germain Racing . The second-fastest in first practice, Mears started getting antsy about his tires during the 85-lap mid-race green-flag run. He caught a break when the caution flag was waved on Lap 98 for debris. 22. Brian Scott , No. 33 Chevrolet, Circle Sport . Scott made his Richmond Cup debut after recording a strong third-place run there in Friday night's XFINITY Series. 23. Trevor Bayne , No. 6 Ford, Roush Fenway Racing . Bayne took advantage of an early beneficiary pass to earn his best Richmond result. 24. AJ Allmendinger , No. 47 Chevrolet, JTG Daugherty Racing . Allmendinger picked up a couple spots and was running 19th with 60 laps to go after his team made some adjustments, including another round of wedge, during the Lap 290 caution. 25. Justin Allgaier , No. 51 Chevrolet, HScott Motorsports . In the second half of the race, Allgaier reported a tight-handling condition and specifically noted he was sliding his front tires. 26. Paul Menard , No. 27 Chevrolet, Richard Childress Racing . Fortunately for Menard, his continued streak of finishes outside the top 20 didn't cost him his first Chase berth. 27. Austin Dillon , No. 3 Chevrolet, Richard Childress Racing . Dillon's best Richmond start of 12th was clouded when he spent the race chasing the handling of his No. 3 Chevrolet. 28. Sam Hornish Jr ., No. 9 Ford, Richard Petty Motorsports . Hornish learned the importance of fresh tires versus track position when he opted not to pit during the third caution period. He restarted second, but plummeted to 18th and a lap down by Lap 200. 29. Tony Stewart , No. 14 Chevrolet, Stewart-Haas Racing . Frustrated, Stewart was running 29th on Lap 91 when he radioed his team, "Pretty (expletive) unimpressive going from 10th to a lap down in 90 laps." Things didn't improve for Stewart, who later radioed, "I want somebody at the end of this race to tell me how the (expletive) this happened." 30. Landon Cassill , No. 40 Chevrolet, Hillman Racing. Cassill's car appeared to do well on longer runs at first, but soon developed a loose-handling condition. 31. Greg Biffle , No. 16 Ford, Roush Fenway Racing . Biffle entered Saturday's race needing a win to qualify for the post-season, but ultimately spent the night aggravated with the handling of his car. 32. Martin Truex Jr ., No. 78 Chevrolet, Furniture Row Racing . Truex, locked into the Chase thanks to his Pocono win in June, had some early misfortune when he got into the wall on Lap 38. 33. David Gilliland , No. 38 Ford, Front Row Motorsports . Gilliland's pit crew made a spring rubber adjustment to alleviate a tight-handling condition when he stopped under caution on Lap 290. 34. J.J. Yeley, No. 26 Toyota, BK Racing . Yeley toughed it out on the same set of tires for almost 100 laps early on Saturday at Richmond, but that cost him track position. 35. Brett Moffitt , No. 34 Ford, Front Row Motorsports . Moffitt's second outing at Richmond was quiet as he fought a loose-handling condition. 36. Matt DiBenedetto , No. 83 Toyota, BK Racing . DiBenedetto made his best career start at Richmond, but struggled to stay on the lead lap at the .75-mile oval. 37. Alex Bowman , No. 7 Chevrolet, Tommy Baldwin Racing . A persistent loose-handling condition early in Saturday night's race made it hard for Bowman to improve his track position. 38. Cole Whitt , No. 35 Ford, Front Row Motorsports . Whitt had to make an unscheduled pit stop after the Lap 218 restart because a valve stem was knocked off his tire. 39. Jeb Burton , No. 23 Toyota, BK Racing . "Tell (No.) 46 sorry," Burton radioed his team after making contact with Michael Annett to bring out the third caution flag. "I don't know what I could have done right there." 40. Jeffrey Earnhardt , No. 32 Ford, Go FAS Racing. In his Cup debut, Jeffrey Earnhardt rolled off the grid 42nd and worked with his team to manage his brakes and tires. 41. Reed Sorenson , No. 98 Ford, Phil Parsons Racing. Sorenson lost his engine early on and leaked oil on his way to the garage, triggering the first caution. 42. Michael McDowell , No. 95 Ford, Leavine Family Racing . McDowell basically ripped off his car's back-end when he accidentally hit the safety truck during the fifth caution and retreated behind the wall. 43. Michael Annett , No. 46 Chevrolet, HScott Motorsports . Annett was running 32nd on Lap 112 when he made contact with other competitors, spun on the backstretch and hit the Turn 3 wall hard.
Grandson of 'The Intimidator' makes move to Viva Motorsports
TaxSlayer.com, a primary sponsor of the No. 7 JR Motorsports team with driver Regan Smith , will expand its involvement with the NASCAR XFINITY Series organization in 2016 while also beginning a new relationship with the Hendrick Motorsports Sprint Cup Series group. TaxSlayer.com, which has been affiliated with JRM since 2010, will serve as the primary sponsor for a total of 10 races in 2016, appearing on the No. 7 Chevrolet of Smith as well as the No. 88 entry that has been fielded for various drivers this season. The company will serve as the primary sponsor of Earnhardt Jr.'s No. 88 Sprint Cup entry for one race in 2016, as well as an associate throughout the year. "TaxSlayer is one of our longest-tenured sponsors," Earnhardt Jr. said in a release announcing the sponsorship. "… I'm extremely loyal to them. I hope the fans are, too. We've done great things together and I'm really looking forward to racing a TaxSlayer car in Sprint Cup next year." JRM fields three entries in the XFINTY Series. In addition to Smith's No. 7 and the No. 88 entry, the organization includes defending series champion Chase Elliott in the No. 9 Chevrolet. "It has been a privilege to be associated with Dale Jr. and JR Motorsports for so long," Jimmy Rhodes, TaxSlayer.com President and CEO, said. "And we're excited to add a new chapter with Hendrick Motorsports next season. "We have found an immense loyalty among NASCAR fans, but especially with Dale Jr.'s fans. We want to continue growing this partnership." Smith, a winner at Mid-Ohio earlier this year, is fourth in points as the XFINITY Series prepares to head to Kentucky Speedway for Saturday night's running of the VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 (8 p.m., NBCSN).
NASCAR fan pops the question at the feet of 12-time Most Popular Driver The green flag for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Federated Auto Parts 400 at Richmond International Raceway hadn't even dropped on Saturday night before a wild act ensued on pit road ... and we're not talking about the typical post-race-drivers-yanking-fire-suit-collars fight. We're talking about love, y'all. RELATED: Dale Jr. proposes to Amy Reimann in Germany This pre-race proposal gets @DaleJr 's approval! #AskMRN pic.twitter.com/3ShQJsesgo — Motor Racing Network (@MRNRadio) September 12, 2015 She said yes!! #NW88JR pic.twitter.com/yFAX6r99BG — Nationwide 88 (@nationwide88) September 12, 2015 The man, who has now been identified as Bryan Letchworth, got down on one knee in front of the No. 88 Chevrolet and Mr. Dale Earnhardt Jr . himself and asked his now-fianceé to marry him. RELATED: Chad Knaus marries former Miss Sprint Cup Most people who are about to propose get blessings from their significant other's father, mother, brother, etc., but maybe the Junior stamp of approval is all you really need. We can only hope she said, "Dale, yeah!"