Found October 25, 2012 on
Start 'N' Park Blog:
MOORESVILLE, N.C. – JR Motorsports announced today it has reached an agreement with Regan Smith to drive the team’s No. 5 NASCAR Nationwide Series entry full time in 2013. General Manager Kelley Earnhardt Miller said Smith will make his JRM debut this year, as the company will field three teams for the Nov. 17 race at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Smith will join teammates Cole Whitt and Danica Patrick in the season finale.
“This is an extremely good opportunity for me,” Smith said. “Dale Jr. and I first started talking about this several years ago, but the timing never matched up to where we could make it happen. Now it’s time. I’m happy to be a part of this organization. I don’t want to just win races. I want to be the team that dominates races and contends for the championship.”
Smith, a 29-year-old native of Cato, N.Y., has competed in the NASCAR Nationwide Series and Camping World Truck Series since 2002 and Sprint Cup Series since 2007. He was crowned Sprint Cup Series Rookie of the Year in 2008, but it was 2011 when he made his biggest splash. Driving the No. 78 Chevrolet, Smith held off Carl Edwards in a thrilling finish to win the prestigious Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway. The popular victory was Smith’s first in NASCAR competition and was part of a storybook season that included two top-fives, five top-10s and 36 laps led.
Smith has not competed in the Nationwide Series since 2007 when he tallied three top-fives, five top-10s, and a pole award at Kentucky Speedway.
“Regan has always impressed me,” said Dale Earnhardt Jr. “He gets the most of his car, no matter what he’s driving or who he’s driving for. He takes care of his cars and gets good finishes. With his experience and ability, we feel he can excel in our equipment. He has a super personality, and his ability to work with everyone here at JR Motorsports and Hendrick Motorsports will be important in getting us back to the winner’s circle.”
Smith’s No. 5 Chevrolet, to date, is the only JRM entry cemented for a full-season slate in 2013. Earnhardt Miller said the goal of the organization is still to run two full-time teams – the No. 5 and No. 7 – with addition to Earnhardt Jr. competing in select Nationwide Series races in the No. 88 car.
“We feel it is important for our sponsors, our fans, and even Dale to keep his Nationwide Series number consistent with his Cup number,” Earnhardt Miller said. “His brand is associated with the No. 88. That’s what makes him distinguishable on the race track, so it’s only natural that he drives the No. 88 all the time. To do that, we are making our No. 5 Chevrolet our full-time entry. We hope to have Cole in the No. 7 full time in 2013, and we are working hard on securing sponsorship for that.”
Smith recently was thrust into the spotlight as the driver chosen to fill the seat of the No. 88 Diet Mountain Dew/National Guard Chevrolet for Hendrick Motorsports while Earnhardt Jr. healed from a concussion. In Earnhardt Jr.’s absence, Smith competed in two Sprint Cup races in the No. 88 Chevy, most recently scoring a seventh-place finish at Kansas Speedway this past Sunday. Smith had recorded his season-best finish of fifth two weeks earlier at Talladega Superspeedway for Furniture Row Racing.
“It has been a whirlwind couple of weeks for me, but it’s been great,” Smith said. “Filling in for Dale Jr. was an honor, and it got me acclimated to the Hendrick Motorsports group, which obviously JR Motorsports works with hand in hand. I was glad to fill in for Dale Jr., and I’m happy that he’s back in his race car this week at Martinsville.”
BEST OF MAXIM
Regan Smith has no ride at Martinsville after finding out that Dale Earnhardt Jr. was indeed cleared to race this weekend after suffering from a concussion and missing the last two race weekends. Smith filled in driving the #88 at Charlotte and Kansas, in which he finished 38th due to engine problems [...]
Regan Smith will race for the Nationwide Series championship next season driving for JR Motorsports.
Smith will drive the No. 5 Chevrolet, and will make his debut next month in the season finale at Homestead.
JRM didn't announce a sponsor Wednesday for Smith. The team would like to run two cars in 2013, but only has Smith's entry cemented.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. is scheduled...
It has been perhaps the worst kept secret in NASCAR for the last two weeks. Today JR Motorsports announced that it had signed Regan Smith to a contract which will place the driver in the No. 5 Chevrolet for the 2013 season in the NASCAR Nationwide Series.
Since being removed from the seat of the No. 78 car at Furniture Row Racing, Smith had substituted for Dale Earnhardt Jr. in the...
Regan Smith and AJ Allmendinger will share the driving duties for the No. 51 Phoenix Racing Chevrolet for the remainder of the 2012 season.
Team owner James Finch confirmed his driver lineup to FOXSports.com on Tuesday. Allmendinger will continue behind the wheel this weekend in Martinsville and the following week at Texas Motor Speedway. Smith will finish the season for Phoenix...
We figured this would happen. Unfortunately, a very talented driver in Regan Smith is without a ride since Dale Earnhardt Jr. is making his return to the series this weekend in Martinsville.
Smith lost his ride after Dover a few weeks ago when Furniture Row Racing decided to go forward with Kurt Busch. In Charlotte, Smith was taking over the No. 51 James Finch Chevy for the departed...
Dale Earnhardt Jr. has spent the last two weeks following his doctor's orders and allowing himself to heal from his recent concussion.
Now, he's ready to get back to racing.
Earnhardt Jr. announced Oct. 11 that he would miss two weeks of NASCAR Sprint Cup racing after being diagnosed with a concussion following a crash in the Oct. 7 race at Talladega Superspeedway. He also...
No one was as thrilled to be back in a race car more than Dale Earnhardt Jr. on Friday.
However, following Earnhardt Jr.'s recent bout with concussions, it's understandable that those closest to him were quite concerned.
Certainly Kelley Earnhardt-Miller was relieved when her brother was cleared. Given the sibling's relationship, she couldn't hold back her elation...
Dale Earnhardt Jr. will return to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series this weekend at Martinsville, Va., after being medically cleared for competition.
Since being diagnosed with a concussion following the Oct. 7 race at Talladega, Ala., Earnhardt has participated in a rehabilitation program directed by Charlotte neurosurgeon Dr. Jerry Petty. Throughout the process, Petty consulted with...
Dale Earnhardt Jr. returns to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series this weekend at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway after being medically cleared for competition. Since being diagnosed with a concussion following the Oct. 7 race at Talladega, Ala., Earnhardt has participated in a rehabilitation program directed by Charlotte (N.C.) neurosurgeon Dr. Jerry Petty. On Monday, Earnhardt logged more...
Dale Earnhardt Jr. says he hates the attention his concussions and nearly three-week departure from NASCAR caused, but he ''learned a ton'' and is glad he took the steps he did to make sure he is OK to race.
NASCAR's most popular driver is returning to the track at Martinsville Speedway this weekend.
He missed races at Charlotte and Kansas after a crash at Talladega...
Dale Earnhardt Jr. has been medically cleared to race this weekend at Martinsville Speedway, Hendrick Motorsports announced Tuesday.
Photo Credit: Jerry Markland/Getty Images for NASCAR
By: Toby Christie – Follow on Twitter @Tobalical
The longest two weeks for Dale Earnhardt Jr. and his legion of fans is officially over as Earnhardt has officially been cleared to race this Sunday at Martinsville. According to a press release from Hendrick Motorsports he completed 123 laps during a test session at the half-mile...