Kyle Busch claimed yet another piece of NASCAR history tonight when he became the first driver to ever win a Sprint Cup Series race at Kentucky Speedway. All three JGR teams would place inside the top 15 with Denny Hamlin finishing 10th and Joey Logano 14th before a packed house at the 1.5-mile track.
During the past 20 years, Joe Gibbs Racing Team has experienced many changes. A constant is Jimmy Makar, senior vice president of racing operations. Makar has journeyed and grown with the team since he joined in August of 1991. Makar began as the crew chief for Dale Jarrett, driver of the No. 18 Interstate Batteries car. Jarrett and Makar earned Joe Gibbs Racing its first victory at the 1993 Daytona 500. Makar went on to serve as Bobby Labonte’s crew chief for eight seasons. Afterwards, he moved into his current role to oversee all aspects of competition for Joe Gibbs Racing. Many victories and challenges have filled the past 20 years for Makar, but no regrets.
Joe Gibbs Racing proved to have one of the strongest teams on the track tonight for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway.
Each of the three JGR drivers showed the ability to make a run to the front of the pack at any point it desired as they raced in two-car pods for each lap of the 160-lap race. There was no secret that teammates Joey Logano and Kyle Busch would partner for tonight’s race especially following last night’s Nationwide Series performance that resulted in a Logano victory. Meanwhile, Denny Hamlin entered the weekend with the strategy to partner with the No. 39 car of Ryan Newman from Stewart-Haas Racing after the pair showed success together in February’s Daytona 500.
Joey Logano won his first race at the Daytona International Speedway Saturday night in his No. 20 SportClip Toyota! He had to fight his way from the rear of the field three times en route to his big win. After his qualifying run earlier in the day, his team has to change a clutch, forcing him to start at the rear of the field. Early in the race Logano spun into turn three off the bumper of the No. 11 car after slowing to avoid a competition who was off the pace. Then, about halfway through the event, Logano pitted for a loose wheel, sealing his third trip to the rear of the field.