NASCAR America: Youth will have big impact in 2018 at Gibbs and Hendrick teams

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As we continue to look at how some of the sport’s power teams shape up for 2018, it was our turn to analyze both Joe Gibbs Racing and Hendrick Motorsports on Tuesday’s NASCAR America.

While both organizations may seem opposite ends apart, there’s really a lot of similarity heading into next season.

Both Erik Jones – who moves to JGR to replace Matt Kenseth in the No. 20 – and teammate Daniel Suarez will be entering their second full season in Cup racing in 2018.

How much better will both be next season? Or, will one or both fall victim to the notorious NASCAR sophomore jinx and both have tough second seasons?

Then there’s Hendrick Motorsports, which uncharacteristically struggled in 2017. The head of the Chevrolet family in NASCAR, HMS and Chevy failed to place even one driver in the Championship 4 round at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

And this is where HMS has a lot of similarity with JGR: youth.

Gone for 2018 are Dale Earnhardt Jr. (retired) and Kasey Kahne (moved to Leavine Family Racing).

In their stead will be youngsters William Byron, fresh off winning the NASCAR Xfinity Series as a rookie this past season, and Alex Bowman, who will replace Earnhardt Jr. in the No. 88.

And don’t forget about Chase Elliott, who will enter his third full season in Cup and is still looking for his first breakthrough win. It’s not a matter of if, but rather a matter of time.

Our analysts Kyle Petty and Jeff Burton gave their take on what HMS and JGR will be like in 2018 on Tuesday’s NASCAR America.

Click the videos above (JGR) and below (HMS) to see what our analysts had to say.