Ray Black Jr.

Rick Ware Racing

Rick Ware Racing announces sponsor for rest of Cup season

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Rick Ware Racing has secured sponsorship for its No. 51 car for the rest of the season, the team announced Sunday.

Beginning with today’s race at Watkins Glen International (2:30 p.m. ET on NBC), the car will be sponsored by construction firm JACOB Companies.

The No. 51 will be driven today by Josh Bilicki, who is making his third career Cup start. Bilicki is the 10th driver to pilot the No. 51 this season.

The company sponsored the No. 51 in July at Daytona when Ray Black Jr. drive the car.

The team’s best result this season is 12th in the Daytona 500 with Justin Marks.

 

Xfinity practice report at Daytona

Photo by Jerry Markland/Getty Images
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DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. —  Only 10 cars were on track for the final Xfinity practice Thursday at Daytona International Speedway.

Chad Finchum posted the fastest lap at 185.567 mph. He was followed by Timmy Hill (185.540 mph), Jeremy Clements (184.896), Alex Labbe (183.135) and Ray Black Jr. (193.016).

There were no incidents in the session.

Click here for practice report.

First practice

Ryan Reed led opening Xfinity practice Friday at Daytona International Speedway with a lap of 196.143 mph. He was followed by Justin Haley (195.869 mph), Ryan Truex (195.831), Austin Cindric (195.520) and Shane Lee (195.312).

Chase Elliott, driving in the No. 23 car for Spencer Gallagher, was sixth on the speed chart with a top lap of 194.801 mph. NASCAR announced Wednesday that it has reinstated Gallagher after he completed the sanctioning body’s Road to Recover program. NASCAR indefinitely suspended Gallagher on May 2 for violating its Substance Abuse Policy .

There were no incidents in the session.

Click here for practice report

Christopher Bell ran the most laps in the session at 25. Tyler Reddick, who won at Daytona in February, was next with 23 laps run.

 

 

 

 

Entry lists for NASCAR Cup, Xfinity and Truck Series at Dover

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For the fourth time in 2018 and the first time since Las Vegas Motor Speedway in early March, all three of NASCAR’s national series will be in action this week at Dover International Speedway.

The weekend will culminate in the Cup Series AAA 400 on Sunday.

Here’s the entry lists for each race.

Cup Series

There are 38 cars on the entry list for the Cup race.

Cole Custer is listed as the driver of the No. 51 for Rick Ware Racing, replacing Timmy Hill from Talladega.

Corey LaJoie will make his fourth start of the season behind the wheel of the No. 72 TriStar Motorsports Chevrolet.

StarCom Racing will roll out a second Chevrolet this week for Derrike Cope.

Last year, Jimmie Johnson beat Saturday’s Xfinity Series winner Kyle Larson in a race that ended under caution.

Click here for the complete entry list.

Xfinity Series

There are 41 cars entered for the OneMain Financial 200.

This is the final Dash 4 Cash race, so no drivers earning Cup points are entered.

Noah Gragson will make his third Xfinity start in the No. 18 Toyota and will look to continue a streak of top fives. He finished second in his debut at Richmond and was fourth last week at Talladega.

Jeb Burton will pilot the No. 3 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet and make his second start of the season.

Ray Black Jr. is entered in the No. 8 Chevrolet owned by B.J. McLeod Motorsports.

Brandon Brown will make his third attempt of the season, driving the No. 90 DGM Racing Chevrolet.

Last year, Kyle Larson led 137 of 200 laps and defeated Ryan Blaney and Daniel Suarez in this race. The highest finishing Xfinity regular was Cole Custer in fourth.

Click here for the complete Xfinity entry list.

Truck Series

There are 34 trucks entered for the Jegs 200.

Bayley Currey will make his fourth Truck start in the No. 83 for Copp Motorsports. His career best finish to date is a 10th last fall at Phoenix.

Camden Murphy will make his first Truck start of 2018 for MB Motorsports; he ran in 11 races last year.

Reed Sorenson will do double duty for Premium Motorsports in the No. 15.

Click here for the complete Truck entry list.

Silly Season Scorecard: Holiday edition

Photo: Richard Petty Motorsports
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Richard Petty Motorsports’ announcement Friday that it will switch to Chevrolet and partner with Richard Childress Racing in 2018 will help make it a good holiday season for both organizations.

The move continued what has been a long and eventful Silly Season in Cup. And it’s not finished with still some rides remaining.

Here’s a look at where Silly Season stands about two months before cars are back on track at Daytona International Speedway.

ANNOUNCED RIDES FOR 2018

Ray Black Jr. joins Rick Ware Racing and will drive the No. 51 car (announcement made Nov. 22)

Aric Almirola joins Stewart-Haas Racing and will drive the No. 10 car (announcement made Nov. 8)

Darrell Wallace Jr. joins Richard Petty Motorsports and will drive the No. 43 car (announcement made Oct. 25)

Jeffrey Earnhardt returns to the No. 33 car at Circle Sport Racing (announcement made Oct. 15)

Kasey Kahne joins Leavine Family Racing and will drive the No. 95 car. (announcement made Sept. 19)

Ty Dillon signs a multi-year contract to remain at Germain Racing and drive the No. 13 car. Sponsor Geico also extends its deal with the team (announcement made Sept. 5)

Chris Buescher signs a multi-year contract to remain at JTG Daugherty and drive the No. 37 car. (announcement made Aug. 18)

Matt DiBenedetto remains with Go Fas Racing in the team’s No. 32 car (announcement made Aug. 12)

William Byron will drive the No. 24 at Hendrick Motorsports, replacing Kasey Kahne (announcement made Aug. 9)

Paul Menard moves to Wood Brothers Racing to drive the No. 21 car (announcement made July 26)

Ryan Blaney moves to Team Penske to drive the No. 12 car and signs a multi-year contract extension (announcement made July 26)

Brad Keselowski agrees to contract extension to drive the No. 2 car for Team Penske (announcement made July 25

Alex Bowman will drive the No. 88 at Hendrick Motorsports, replacing Dale Earnhardt Jr. (announcement made July 20)

Erik Jones will drive the No. 20 at Joe Gibbs Racing, replacing Matt Kenseth (announcement made July 11)

OPEN/POSSIBLY OPEN RIDES

— Nos. 23 & 83: BK Racing has not announced plans for its cars for 2018.

— No. 27: Richard Childress Racing has not announced plans for this car for 2018.

— No. 34: Front Row Motorsports informed Landon Cassill on Oct. 9 that he would not be returning to the team next season. The team has not announced its driver lineup for next season. 

— No. 41: Stewart-Haas Racing declined to pick up the option on Kurt Busch’s contract for next year on Aug. 1. Even so, the team tweeted that it expected Busch back with sponsor Monster Energy for next year. Busch said Nov. 29, a day before the Cup Awards in Las Vegas, that he is not too worried about his situation and expects to be with the team. “I think that my best chance to win races and to win championships is to be with Stewart-Haas Racing,’’ he said.

— No. 77: Furniture Row Racing sold the charter to this team. This car will not compete in 2018.

AVAILABLE DRIVERS

Matt Kenseth: Out of the No. 20 after this season. He does not have plans for 2018.

Kurt Busch: With Stewart-Haas Racing declining to pick up his option for next year, Busch is a free agent. Even with Stewart-Haas Racing’s action, there’s still a good chance Busch signs a deal to remain with the organization.

Danica Patrick: She will not return to Stewart-Haas Racing after this season. Patrick announced Nov. 17 at Homestead that she plans to drive only the Daytona 500 and Indianapolis 500 next year before retiring. She has not completed a deal to run either race so far. 

Michael McDowellWill not return to Leavine Family Racing with Kasey Kahne joining the team next season. Has not announced 2018 plans.

Landon CassillSearching for a ride after being informed he will not be back at Front Row Motorsports. He said Oct. 10 that he did not have sponsorship to bring with him at the time.

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Ray Black Jr. to race full-time in Cup in 2018 with Rick Ware Racing

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Ray Black Jr. will race full-time for Rick Ware Racing in the Cup Series next year and compete against William Byron for Rookie of the Year honors

Black, 26, will make the move from the Xfinity Series to Cup to drive the No. 51.

Rick Ware told frontstretch.com his team purchased a charter for next season, guaranteeing the No. 51 a starting spot in every race. Ware did not disclose which team he purchased the charter from.

Black, native of Flagler Beach, Florida, made his Cup debut this year in the No. 51 at Chicagoland Speedway. He qualified 39th and finished last, 16 laps down.

He made two more starts, at Texas Motor Speedway (finished 34th) and Miami, where he placed 38th after being parked by NASCAR for not meeting minimum speed.

Black has 55 Xfinity starts since 2015 with a best finish of 12th in last July’s Daytona race. In 31 Camping World Truck Series starts his only top five and top 10 was a fifth-place finish in the 2015 season opener at Daytona.

Black was one of six drivers to pilot the No. 51 in 2017. Rick Ware Racing has fielded 418 Xfinity starts since 1995, but only made 30 Cup starts, its first coming in 2012 at Las Vegas with Timmy Hill.

The team didn’t make another Cup start until this season.

Ware also told fronstretch.com he would run a part-time No. 52 car with the expectation of it being driven by BJ McLeod, Cody Ware, Kyle Weatherman and John Graham.