JD Motorsports to field a three-car Xfinity Series program in 2017

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JD Motorsports announced Tuesday that it will have two of last season’s drivers return for 2017, while bringing back a third driver who previously drove for the organization.

Team owners Johnny Davis and Gary Keller will see the return of last year’s drivers Ross Chastain and Garrett Smithley, as well as the return of Harrison Rhodes, who raced for the team in 2015.

Chastain, 24, will mark his third straight season with the team. Smithley, 24, returns to the team for his sophomore season. The 23-year-old Rhodes returns to the team for a full season after having driven in 28 races for the organization in 2015.

“We feel like we have a great young group of drivers who will give us a three-way shot at doing well this season,” Davis said in a post on the team’s Facebook page. “We know what all of these guys can do, and all of them have run a lot of laps with us. So we won’t be starting over. It’s more like a continuation of where we’ve been headed.”

JD Motorsports is based in Gaffney, South Carolina.

Chastain, of Alva, Florida, finished 16th in the Xfinity Series last season, with a top season finish of 11th at Daytona International Speedway.

Smithley, of Peachtree City, Georgia, finished 18th last season. His top result was 12th at Talladega Superspeedway.

Rhodes, of High Point, North Carolina, had a best run of ninth at Daytona with the team in 2015.

The 2017 NASCAR Xfinity Series season begins Feb. 25, with the PowerShares QQQ 300 at Daytona.

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