CONCORD, North Carolina — It’s only one call, but Ty Majeski is already benefiting from the return of Matt Kenseth to the fold at Roush Fenway Racing.
Majeski, one of three drivers competing for Roush in the N0. 60 in the Xfinity Series this season, reached out to the 2003 Cup champion ahead of last weekend’s race at Dover International Speedway.
It was the first time the two Wisconsin natives have talked since Roush announced Kenseth would share its No. 6 Cup car with Trevor Bayne for the rest of the year, starting this weekend at Kansas Speedway.
Majeski, 23, is from Seymour, Wisconsin, 120 miles north of Kenseth’s hometown of Cambridge.
“He just told me what to expect, what to look for in the car, what the car needs to feel like in practice to be good on race day,” Majeski told NBC Sports Monday during a break in the Xfinity test session at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
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The conversation came after Majeksi’s first two starts in the No. 60 this season, where he wrecked out of races at Bristol and Talladega.
Majeski felt he had a top-10 car at Dover after qualifying ninth. But Majeski lost fourth gear and wrecked on Lap 170 in an incident with Dylan Lupton.
Majeski was “for sure” that his call with Kenseth helped him despite his third DNF in as many starts.
“We didn’t get the result we wanted, but that was the best put together weekend I feel the 60 has had all season,” Majeski said. “We practiced well. We qualified well, and we were racing really well.”
So far, the No. 60 Ford is struggling with Majeski, Chase Briscoe and Austin Cindric sharing the ride. None has finished in the top 10 or on the lead lap through 10 races. The No. 60 has five DNFs between Majeski and Cindric.
While Cindric also races for Team Penske and Briscoe with Stewart-Haas Racing, Majeski is limited to his races with Roush.
Majeski “was excited” when he learned Kenseth was returning to the team he raced for from 1999-2012 before departing for Joe Gibbs Racing.
“Anytime you can get Matt Kenseth or any guy of his stature and his level of experience back into an organization it’s huge for everybody,” Majeski said. “It’s huge for me to lean on him. It’s huge for our engineers to get a guy that has experience to give us the feedback we need to make our cars better.”
Kenseth’s insight comes in addition to Majeski’s access to Trevor Bayne and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Stenhouse helped shake down Majeski’s car for the Charlotte test before he took over.
But Majeski’s history with Kenseth didn’t start with his phone call.
His path has crossed with Kenseth’s multiple times on short tracks in their home state in late model races. It didn’t always end well for Majeski.
“Early in my career I wasn’t racing around him at all,” Majeski said. “Two years ago at (the) Slinger (Nationals at Slinger Speedway), I was leading the race with 50 to go and blew a right rear tire. I was pulling away from them, we were probably going to win the race, but he ended up winning. … He was driving for a different team so I wasn’t able to go and talk to him or anything like that. We actually got into each other for the lead on like Lap 20 and we both had to go to the back and we both had to make our way up through the field and he was actually following me up through the field. I was making the holes for him.”