After spending the last several years racing primarily in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, 1990 Daytona 500 winner Derrike Cope will return to drive in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series in 2017.
Cope will drive a limited schedule in the No. 55 Chevrolet for Premium Motorsports, according to Cope’s Twitter account and Facebook page and confirmed to NBC Sports by Cope’s wife.
Cope may drive a full schedule with the team if additional sponsorship becomes available.
Cope’s first race with the team will be the March 5 Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 on March 5 at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
Cope’s last Cup start was in 2011. He has 409 career Cup starts with two wins and 32 top-10 finishes. Both wins came in 1990 — the Daytona 500 and at Dover International Speedway.
Cope also has 280 career Xfinity starts with one win and eight top 10s. He also has 15 Camping World Truck starts.
Cope will not race in the Xfinity Series in 2017. According to an email from Cope’s wife, he is in the process of selling his Xfinity equipment.
Eldora Speedway general manager Roger Slack joined the NASCAR on NBC podcast to discuss his track’s past, present and possible future with NASCAR.
Slack detailed the run-up to the initial “secret” test with Tony Stewart and Richard Childress Racing’s Austin Dillon that led to scheduling a Camping World Truck Series race that recently completed its fifth edition.
Slack also discussed the storied history of Eldora, which opened in 1954 and was bought by Stewart 50 years later.
You can listen to the podcast by clicking on the AudioBoom embed below or download and subscribe to the podcast on Apple Podcasts by clicking here. The free subscription will provide automatic downloads of new episodes to your smartphone.
It also is available on Stitcher by clicking here and also can be found on Google Play, Spotify and a host of other smartphone apps.
On Wednesday’s edition of NASCAR America, Daniel Suarez recalled the moment he got the call that he was being promoted to replace Carl Edwards in the NASCAR Cup Series at Joe Gibbs Racing.
Suarez was at dinner back home in Mexico with family and friends when JGR officials called and him to be ready for a teleconference in a few moments.
Suarez stepped away, telling his dinner partners he’d be back shortly — which ultimately lasted 40 minutes.
When he returned to the dinner table, he couldn’t tell anything about the phone call — JGR officials swore him to secrecy — but he eventually revealed that he had been promoted to the NASCAR Cup Series to replace Edwards, who had decided to take a hiatus from his racing career.
Check out the video above.
Daniel Suarez appeared on Wednesday’s live broadcast of NASCAR America from the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte, North Carolina,
One of the funniest segments of Suarez’s visit was a video and verbal collage of how much he and his fellow Joe Gibbs Racing teammates really think of each other — all in good humor, of course.
Check out the video above where Suarez, Denny Hamlin, Matt Kenseth and Kyle Busch answer the “tough questions” about themselves, as well as how they feel about their fellow teammates.
In winning last year’s Xfinity Series championship, Mexican native Daniel Suarez became NASCAR’s first international champion.
It was the culmination of a journey that began with his father and, interestingly enough, Volkswagen Beetles.
Check out Suarez’s story and the thoughts about his success and prowess by our NASCAR America analysts in the video above.
Speaking of VW Beetles, Suarez’s father sold his restoration shop to fund his son’s racing dream. Years later, Daniel repaid his father by purchasing a new restoration shop for him. See the video below.