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Ryan Truex replaces Blake Koch at Kaulig Racing

LEXINGTON, N.C. (January 9, 2018 ) - In the midst of off-season expansion, Kaulig Racing announced today that Ryan Truex will drive the #11 Chevrolet for the full 2018 NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS) season. Truex is coming off a ninth-place finish in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) driver standings. The younger brother of current Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS) champion Martin Truex Jr. also has two back-to-back NASCAR K&N East Series Championships as well as multiple years of experience in NASCAR's premiere series.

"I'm extremely excited to be making the move back into the Xfinity Series," said Truex. "In just two years Kaulig Racing has proved to be a highly competitive team each race and it should be a great fit. Last season I saw a lot of improvements in my racing and hopefully this year I can continue the success Kaulig Racing has built and compete for the championship at the end of the year."

Two years after breaking into the NXS, team owner Matt Kaulig is excited about his team's fast-paced growth in the sport. With back-to-back playoff runs as well as two stage wins and one pole award in the team's short history, Kaulig sees promising opportunities for this season with Truex behind the wheel.

"When we started this team two years ago I knew we had the potential to be one of the strongest teams in the Xfinity Series and I think we're within reach of that goal. Ryan is going to be a great addition to the team and I have some high hopes for this season. Each year we keep improving as a team and I think this season we'll be able to get some wins and make another run in the playoffs. Everyone at Kaulig Racing is excited to have Ryan on board and it should be a great, fun year."

Truex will make his debut for Kaulig Racing at Daytona International Speedway on Saturday February 17 th , 2018. A sponsor announcement regarding Truex will be made shortly.

--- Kaulig Racing ---

UPDATE: Team owner Matt Kaulig insisted on SiriusXM's The Morning Drive that he and Koch remain "best friends" and will do whatever possible to help secure a future in racing.

"Sometimes you have to make changes, sometimes changes are tough, but for the overall organization and everything else I think bringing Ryan Truex in to drive is a crazy positive move and I'm excited about it," Kaulig said on SiriusXM.

"Blake (Koch) is one of my best friends, he is one of my best friends. We talk all the time, we've been close for probably four years. I'm going to help him do whatever he needs to do.

Kaulig added that Bar Harbor Seafood Products, a company that has an existing relationship with Truex will be the primary marketing partner for 2018, while LeafFilter, a company owned by Kaulig will scale back it's full-time primary role - but will sponsor some select races this season.

Additionally, Kaulig, a successful entrepreneur from Ohio said he hopes to expand his operation to a two-car team in 2018 and Koch could drive, but only if sponsorship materializes.

"There's a 100 percent chance of really doing that," added Kaulig about having Koch behind the wheel of the expected second team. "A lot of the sport has to do with sponsorship and that's part of the situation. We won't run the second car without sponsorship.

--- Catchfence ---