D.J. Kennington

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Reports: Daniel Suarez to drive for Gaunt Brothers Racing

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Multiple reports state that Daniel Suarez will drive the No. 96 Cup car for Gaunt Brothers Racing in 2020.

The team has not made any an announcement.

Toby Christie reported Friday at tobychristie.com that a deal was done for Suarez to drive the full Cup season for Gaunt Brothers Racing. Motorsport.com reported Monday that Suarez would join Gaunt Brothers Racing for the full season.

Suarez would replace Parker Kligerman, who confirmed to NBC Sports on Friday that he would not return to the No. 96 car this season.

This would be the fourth Cup season for Suarez. He drove for Joe Gibbs Racing in 2017-18 before being replaced by Martin Truex Jr. Suarez moved to Stewart-Haas Racing in 2019 and was replaced after the season by rookie Cole Custer.

Suarez continues to seek his first Cup win. He has eight top-five and 32 top-10 finishes in 108 Cup starts. He won the 2016 Xfinity title, a year after winning rookie of the year honors in that series.

Gaunt Brothers Racing debuted in 2017, running one race with D.J. Kennington. The team ran 22 races the following year between Kligerman, D.J. KenningtonJeffrey Earnhardt and Jesse Little. The team ran 15 races last year with Drew Herring running once along with Kligerman’s 14 starts.

Parker Kligerman will not return to No. 96 Cup car

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Parker Kligerman said Friday that he will not drive the No. 96 Cup car for Gaunt Brothers Racing this season.

Kligerman ran 14 races for the team last year, finishing a season-high 15th in the Daytona 500 and also in the fall Talladega playoff race. Kligerman ran four races with the team in 2018, placing a season-best 23rd at Sonoma.

“It was a super cool opportunity,” Kligerman told NBC Sports of driving for Gaunt Brothers Racing. “I didn’t think I was going to get a second shot at Cup. Then I had that opportunity at the Coke 600 (in 2018 with the team) and last year we did way more races than I ever thought we would do and got to be a part of the Toyota family.

“I felt like we really, as race team, improved and improved and improved and got to where our last race at Texas was one of our best races of the year. We were just solid, speed-wise and execution and all that stuff. It was cool to see that and be a part of that. That’s why I did that. I felt like we were building something.

“(Owner Marty Gaunt) has been great to me, super open to the process in the offseason. In my position, being a driver that doesn’t have any personal funding, you always know, especially being a part-time driver, you’re on borrowed time. I’m very happy for them. I wish them all the best.”

Kligerman said he does not have any rides for 2020 in any of NASCAR national series. Kligerman is a NASCAR on NBC broadcaster and co-host of the show “Proving Grounds” on NBCSN.

The team has not announced its plans for the 2020 season. Daniel Suarez, linked to the team, has not announced his plans for this year after losing his ride at Stewart-Haas Racing after last season.   

Gaunt Brothers Racing debuted in 2017, running one race with D.J. Kennington. The team ran 22 races the following year between Kligerman, Kennington, Jeffrey Earnhardt and Jesse Little. The team ran 15 races last year with Drew Herring running once along with Kligerman’s 14 starts.

Truck Series driver Tyler Dippel charged with criminal possession of controlled substance

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Tyler Dippel, the Gander Outdoors Truck Series driver suspended indefinitely by NASCAR last week, was charged by New York State Police on Aug. 18 with criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree in his hometown of Wallkill, New York, NBC Sports has confirmed.

Fox Sports first reported the charge.

Criminal possession of a controlled substance is a class A misdemeanor. The seventh degree is the lowest level offense for that charge.

According to New York state law, if convicted, Dippel could face a maximum of one year in jail or three years probation. In addition, a fine of up to $1,000 or twice the amount of the individual’s gain from the crime may be imposed.

Dippel’s court date is scheduled for 9 a.m. Wednesday in Wallkill Court in Middletown, New York.

The spokesperson confirmed that Dippel, 19, was pulled over in a Ford F-150 truck after he was caught driving more than 80 mph in a 65 mph zone.

According to the spokesperson, when Troopers questioned Dippel and the person he was traveling with, they had conflicting stories about where they were traveling to and from.

The spokesperson said Dippel gave permission for Troopers to search his vehicle. The spokesperson said that in the search, Troopers found a pill bottle of Amphetamine and Dextroamphetamine in a backpack. The bottle was prescribed to someone else. The Trooper spokesperson could not say who it was prescribed to or how many pills were in the bottle.

NASCAR announced its suspension of Dippel last Friday before the race weekend in Canada. He was suspended for violating Section 12.1 of the NASCAR rule book for actions detrimental to stock car racing, including a violation of the sport’s code of conduct.

Dippel drove for Young’s Motorsports in the first 17 races of the year. He was replaced in Sunday’s race by D.J. Kennington, who finished 15th.

Tyler Dippel suspended indefinitely by NASCAR

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Gander Outdoors Truck Series driver Tyler Dippel has been suspended indefinitely for violating Section 12.1 of the NASCAR rule book for actions detrimental to stock car racing, including a violation of the sport’s code of conduct, a NASCAR spokesperson confirmed. No other details were given.

The suspension comes with the series competing at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park this weekend, where Dippel was set to drive Young’s Motorsports’ No. 02 Chevrolet. He has been replaced in the truck by D.J. Kennington.

Dippel, 19, was in his first full-time season in the Truck Series and was 13th in points, having failed to make the playoffs. He had one top five and three top 10s this season.

Young’s Motorsports issued the below statement in the wake of the suspension.

Updated entry lists for Cup, Truck at Martinsville

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Here are the entry lists for this weekend’s races.

Cup – STP 500 (2 p.m. ET Sunday on Fox Sports 1)

Thirty-six cars are entered for the sixth Cup race of the year. D.J. Kennington is listed in the No. 77 Spire Motorsports entry.

Jeb Burton is entered in Rick Ware Racing’s No. 52 Ford.

Click here for the entry list.

Gander Outdoors Truck – Martinsville 250 (2 p.m. ET Saturday on Fox Sports 1)

Thirty-nine trucks are entered. Those also entered in the Cup race are Kyle Busch, Austin Dillon and Ross Chastain. Bubba Wallace is entered in AM Racing’s No. 22 truck.

Click here for the entry list.