#20 NASCAR Team News and Links

Joe Gibbs Racing
Matt Kenseth (2017)
Matt Kenseth's Race Against Bullying Book

DeWalt (15 races)
DeWalt Racing
PEAK / BlueDEF (2 races)
Tide Pods (2 races)
Interstate Batteries(Clash)
Interstate Batteries Racing

Mac Tools
Freightliner Trucks

Joe Gibbs Racing - Twitter
Joe Gibbs Racing - Facebook
Matt Kenseth - Twitter
Matt Kenseth Fanclub - Twitter
Matt Kenseth Fanclub - Facebook
DeWalt - Facebook
DeWalt - Twitter
Interstate Batteries - Twitter
Interstate Batteries - Facebook

Matt Kenseth - ESPN
Matt Kenseth - RacingReference.info

MORE INFO on the JAYSKI site about teams/drivers
2017 #20 Paint Schemes
2016 #20 Paint Schemes
2015 #20 Paint Schemes
Paint Scheme Gallery
Driver Appearances
Team Address/Contact

Races (15) that DeWalt FlexVolt is scheduled to be the sponsor in 2017:
Daytona - 2/26
Atlanta - 3/5
Bristol - 4/23
Pocono - 6/11
Sonoma - 6/25
Daytona - 7/1
New Hampshire - 7/16
Michigan - 8/13
Bristol - 8/19
Chicago - 9/17
Dover - 10/1
Talladega - 10/15
Kansas - 10/22
Martinsville - 10/29
Homestead - 11/19, Habitat for Humanity

Races (2) that PEAK/BlueDEF is scheduled to be the sponsor in 2017:
Las Vegas - 3/12, BlueDEF
Auto Club - 3/26, PEAK Antifreeze

Races that Tide Pods is scheduled to be the sponsor in 2017:
Phoenix - 3/19
Martinsville - 4/2
Indianapolis - 7/23
Charlotte - 10/8

Races that Toyota was the sponsor in 2017:
Texas - 4/9, "Let's Go Places"
Richmond - 9/9 (with American Red Cross)
Dover - 6/4, ToyotaCare
Pocono - 7/30, ToyotaCare
Watkins Glen - 8/6, ToyotaCare
Richmond - 9/9, ToyotaCare / Hurricane Harvey Relief

Races that Circle K was the sponsor in 2017:
Richmond - 4/30
Talladega - 5/7
Kansas - 5/13
Charlotte - 5/28
Kentucky - 7/8
Darlington - 9/3, throwback
Phoenix - 11/12

Races that XFINITY was the sponsor in 2017:
Texas - 11/5

Races that SiriusXM was the sponsor in 2017:
New Hampshire - 9/24

Races that Freightliner was the sponsor in 2017:
Michigan - 6/18

Races (1) that Interstate Batteries is scheduled to be the sponsor in 2017:
Daytona, Clash - 2/18

There are five current race tracks the Cup Series runs on that Matt Kenseth has not won a Cup race:
Indianapolis, best finish 2nd, 8/3/2003, 8/6/2006, 7/24/2016
Watkins Glen, best finish 4th, 8/9/2015
Martinsville, best finish 2nd, 10/27/2013
Atlanta, best finish 2nd, 3/7/2010
Sonoma, best finish 8th, 6/22/2008

Contract Status: Driver: 2017 and leaves; Primary Sponsors: DeWalt - 2017+;

#20 Team / Driver News

JGR announces Chris Gayle as Crew Chief for Erik Jones and the #20 team Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) announced Chris Gayle will assume the role of crew chief for the #20 Toyota Camry team in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series with driver Erik Jones starting with the 2018 season. "I'm very excited to work with Erik again in 2018 and continue to build on our rookie season of 2017," said Gayle. "I think the lessons we learned together this year will be invaluable to us next season. I'm also very excited to be coming back to JGR and work with all the great people and familiar faces in that organization." Chris Gayle returns to JGR following a one-year tenure at Furniture Row Racing where he led Jones in his Rookie Season campaign.(Joe Gibbs Racing)[Read More Here](11-15-2017)

DEWALT Supports Hurricane Recovery with Habitat for Humanity Hurricane Irma caused unprecedented damage to the state of Florida, including the Keys. Tony and Rima both work for Sugarloaf School on Big Pine Key and lost their house and possessions due to the storm. Volunteers from DEWALT will work alongside this family to repair and rebuild their home. Helping to improve a decent place to live will ensure they can get back to providing education to their community (Joe Gibbs Racing), Matt Kenseth will run a #20-DeWalt / Matt Kenseth tribute car at Homestead-Miami Speedway, a throwback to the car he raced in his rookie Cup Series season [Read More Here](11-14-2017)

Jason Ratcliff to serve as crew chief for Christopher Bell: Crew chief Jason Ratcliff will oversee Christopher Bell's run for rookie of the year in the NASCAR Xfinity Series next season sources told Motorsport.com. An official announcement of the move is expected this week.[More](11-14-2017)

Matt Kenseth shuffles Championship 4 field with dramatic Phoenix win: The middle-aged man without a ride for 2018 drove a dagger through the heart of the youngster expected to shine in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series for years to come.[More](11-12-2017)

Matt Kenseth wins the Can-Am 500(k) Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Phoenix Raceway for his 1st win of 2017, 2nd win at Phoenix and 39th career win.
#24-Elliott finished 2nd followed by #78-Truex, Jr. #77-Jones, #4-Harvick, #1-McMurray, #18-Busch, #17-Stenhouse, Jr., #42-Almriola, and #88-Earnhardt, Jr.
#24-Elliott took the lead with 28 laps left in the race and looked like he could hold on to win and clinch a spot in the Championship race, but the tires went away and he was passed by Kenseth with 9 laps left.
The four drivers that will compete for the 2018 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Championship next week at Homestead are #78-Martin Truex, Jr., #18-Kyle Busch, #4-Kevin Harvick, and #2-Keselowski.
#11-Hamlin, #21-Blaney, #24-Elliott, and #24-Johnson were eliminated from the playoffs.
Their points have been reset to 5000 each. They will not receive stage points at Homestead. The highest finishing driver will clinch the championship.
#48-Johnson cut at tire at the end of stage 2 and hit the wall. He finished 39th.
With 37 laps to go, #11-Hamlin had a tire go down following contact with #24-Elliott. He finished 35th. Hamlin had finished 2nd in the first stage, won the second stage and had gotten into position to make the Championship race before the accident.
Stage 1 was won by #42-Larson, but he lost an engine during stage 2 and finished 40th.
Stage 2 was won by #11-Hamlin, finished 35th.
There were 9 lead changes among 5 drivers and 7 cautions for 41 yellow flag laps. There was a short red flag for track cleanup with 58 laps remaining after a broken brake rotor off #37-Buescher's car flew into the SAFER barrier and caught it on fire.
The average speed of the race was: 105.534mph.
See unofficial race results, awards, laps led, cautions and more at (all pdfs):
Unofficial Race Results
Cumulative Report
Penalty Report
Unofficial Drivers Points Standings
Unofficial Owners Points Standings
Official Race & Points Reports Standings

Kenseth to step away from Cup next season: After 18 consecutive seasons in Cup, Matt Kenseth said he is taking a break from NASCAR's premier series after the 2017 season. In his first expansive comments about the future since the announcement four months ago that he was losing his ride at Joe Gibbs Racing, Kenseth said Saturday during the taping of a NASCAR on NBC podcast episode (which will be posted early next week) that he will put a two-decade career on hiatus, possibly for good.[More](11-4-2017)

Kenseth talks about Kansas accident, penalty: Matt Kenseth was parked by NASCAR after the team had too many men over the fall after an accident.[More](10-22-2017)

Kenseth talks ambulance drivers, 2018 plans; no to #10 ride Joe Gibbs Racing driver Matt Kenseth was made available to the media during NASCAR's Playoff Media Day, some for questions answered: Q) Has NASCAR taken ownership of the issues from Saturday night? KENSETH: "Which ones? Just the ambulance one? Oh, yeah, I don't know."
Q) Have you talked to them about it? KENSETH: "No." Q) Have you seen an ambulance driver get lost or confused in a race before? KENSETH: "Yeah. I think it was actually the spring Richmond race. I was driving around the infield for about five minutes with him. He was lost and couldn't find the care center. So thankfully I wasn't bleeding to death. Then the other one I think is after California or something like that. He drove so recklessly, it threw me right off the bench and I almost hit my head in the ambulance. So, yeah, there's been a couple instances this year actually." Q) Have you made any progress on your plans for next year? KENSETH: "I'm really worried about the next 10 weeks. I mean, the next 10 weeks will probably have enough problems to worry about without, you know, worrying about anything three or four months from now. So, no, I don't really have anything for you there." Q) Should we consider you a candidate to replace Danica? KENSETH: "No, nope. It's not me. I can tell you that, it's not me."(Toyota PR)[Read Full Transcript Here](9-13-2017)

Kenseth comments on Richmond incident that put him out of race: "Well we were all just kind of coming to pit road and I saw an ambulance sitting there and so I looked left of the ambulance at the same time (Jason) Hedlesky (spotter) yelled at everyone to stop there was an ambulance just sitting there. It was an accordion effect and I just couldn't get stopped."[More](9-9-2017)

Matt Kenseth takes step toward playoff with Richmond pole run: In need of a playoff spot next week and a place to drive next year, Matt Kenseth stormed to the pole position for Saturday night's Federated Auto parts 400 at Richmond Raceway. Kenseth covered the .75-mile distance in 22.055 seconds (122.421 mph) in the final round of Friday's knockout qualifying session to edge Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Denny Hamlin (122.277 mph) for the top starting spot by .026 seconds.[More](9-8-2017)

Red Cross featured on Kenseth's #20 at Richmond: The Toyota Mothers of Invention (MOI) program recognizes women who actively contribute through innovation, entrepreneurship and invention. Select MOIs with ties to disaster response and relief have sprung into action, finding ways to solve steep challenges resulting from the disaster situation in south Texas and Louisiana. [More](9-7-2017)

Furniture Row president: 'Really good drivers' interested in #77 ride The continued impressive performance of Erik Jones has done more than help solidify Furniture Row Racing as a potential powerhouse in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. It also has elevated interest in the #77 Toyota for 2018. "There have been some really good drivers that are looking around and that have inquired about the car because I think it is obvious the performance of the car is something any driver would like to be in right now," Joe Garone, president of Furniture Row Racing, told NASCAR.com. "It hasn't shocked me; it's a compliment to the team some of the drivers that have talked to us." The potential for an open seat exists because Jones, 21, is headed to Joe Gibbs Racing in 2018 to take over the #20 Toyota currently driven by veteran Matt Kenseth.
Garone didn't name names, but it's likely both Kenseth and Kasey Kahne are among those who have expressed interest in the ride since neither will be back with their respective teams next season. While Kenseth is being replaced by Jones, Kahne is being released with one year remaining on his contract with Hendrick Motorsports as that organization puts William Byron in its #5 Chevrolet in '18. "It's 100 percent relying on sponsorship," Garone said on whether the organization will field the #77 next year. "We certainly never got into this to run just one year. A set of circumstances presented itself that we're having to deal with. It's late in the year and we've known for a little bit that we were possibly going to be facing having to find another sponsor."(NASCAR.com)[Read More Here](8-28-2017)

Kenseth comments on 2018: Matt Kenseth says he has nothing new to report on a ride for next season. Speaking to the media Friday morning at Bristol he said, Do you have any announcement to make regarding the 2018 season? "I'll let you know when I know something. I'll be honest with you, I'm just, I'm not worried about it even really one percent anymore to be honest with you. I'm just not concerned about it. It's not - I'm really concerned about 2017 and that's the truth."(8-18-2017)

Kenseth doesn't expect to drive #88 next season: He tells SiriusXM Radio that he has nothing lined up for next year and is not concerned at this point.[More](7-18-2017)

#20 crew chief Ratcliff will not return to that role in 2018 Crew chief Jason Ratcliff will be following driver Matt Kenseth on the way out of the #20 Joe Gibbs Racing's Toyota in 2018. Ratcliff confirmed to NBC Sports after Kenseth's fourth place finish Sunday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway that he won't be returning atop the pit box next season when Erik Jones replaces Kenseth. Ratcliff said he isn't sure if he will stay at Joe Gibbs Racing ("We'll see," he said with a smile), but he expects all of the car's team members are secure at the organization.(NBC Sports)[Read More Here](7-17-2017)

Erik Jones to drive #20 Toyota in 2018 Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) announced that driver Erik Jones will drive the #20 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Camry for the organization beginning in 2018.
Matt Kenseth, who currently pilots the #20 Toyota Camry for JGR, will not return to the organization following the 2017 season. Currently competing full time in the NASCAR Cup Series for Furniture Row Racing, Jones sits 14th in the point standings and leads the Sunoco Rookie of the Year Standings.(Joe Gibbs Racing)
The Following Statement is Attributed to Barney Visser, Owner of Furniture Row Racing "Regarding today's announcement that Erik Jones will drive in the NASCAR Cup Series for Joe Gibbs Racing starting in 2018, Furniture Row Racing's commitment to Jones and the #77 team remains the same for the remainder of the season. Our goal is for Jones to qualify for the playoffs, make a run for the championship and capture Rookie of the Year honors. We are working on our team plans for 2018 but don't have anything concrete to report at this time except that Martin Truex Jr. will continue to drive the #78 Furniture Row Racing Toyota."
(Furniture Row Racing)[Read More Here](7-11-2017)

Matt Kenseth doesn't expect to race for Joe Gibbs next season: Matt Kenseth, the 2003 NASCAR Cup Series champion who has 38 career Cup race victories, doesn't expect to return to Joe Gibbs Racing next season. "I do not think I will have the option to race for JGR next year, unfortunately," Kenseth said prior to practice at Kentucky Speedway. [More](7-7-2017)

Silly Season heating up: Brad Keselowski left himself very little wiggle room when asked if he is a candidate to replace Dale Earnhardt Jr. next season. "Roger has given me a lot, and I have no reason to not want to stay with him," Keselowski replied when The Associated Press asked him if Earnhardt's retirement at the end of the season and his open seat at Hendrick Motorsports is holding up a new deal. As NASCAR hits the long, slow stretch of summer, its "silly season" is certainly heating up and Earnhardt's seat in the #88 Chevrolet the biggest prize of free agency.[More](6-19-2017)

DeWALT supports Wounded Warrior Project with NASCAR fundraising initiative: DeWALT, along with Joe Gibbs Racing and #20 DeWALT Toyota driver, Matt Kenseth, will honor injured veterans at the Monster Energy NASCAR All-Star Race this weekend. In support of Wounded Warrior Project (WWP), DeWALT has partnered with Lowe's retail locations in North Carolina to implement a powerful in-store promotion. Throughout April and May, 10% of the proceeds generated from the sale of all DeWALT products will be donated to WWP. To further the impact, Stanley Black & Decker (parent company of DeWALT) will match all funds raised, doubling the donation amount to 20% of all proceeds. [More](5-17-2017)

Truex Jr. and Kenseth host Dover vs. Pocono Rivalry Day Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series stars Martin Truex Jr. and Matt Kenseth took off their racing suits and put on their softball jerseys on Wednesday, May 3 during the annual Dover vs. Pocono Rivalry Day event in Allentown, Pa. Played at the home of Lehigh Valley IronPigs, the Triple-A affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies, Truex and Kenseth participated in a variety of activities, including softball, kickball, dizzy-bat tee-ball, water balloon tossing and more.
In the end, the final event, a go-kart race along the warning track, provided the game's final margin as Kenseth, representing Team Pocono, edged Team Dover's Truex at home plate. Team Dover leads the annual series with Team Pocono three games to two, with one event rained out. Track officials and area media members made up the majority of players the two teams. After Truex and Kenseth threw out the ceremonial first pitches for the IronPigs' game against the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders, the drivers took questions on a variety of NASCAR topics, from stage racing to racing against a younger generation of drivers.(PR)[More](5-7-2017)

Final-round surge puts Matt Kenseth on Richmond pole: Matt Kenseth won't have to come from the middle of nowhere, as he did last Sunday at Bristol Motor Speedway, where he started 22nd, charged toward the front in the closing laps and finished fourth. Quite the contrary. In Sunday's Toyota Owners 400 at Richmond International Raceway, Kenseth will lead the field to the green flag in the ninth Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race of the season after winning the pole during Friday's knockout qualifying session.More](4-28-2017)

Kenseth hopes to race full-time in 2018 So how would #20-Matt Kenseth handle retirement? "I probably just wouldn't show up at Daytona and just everybody say was Matt racing this week? Or I'd send out like a four-word tweet. I don't know if I'd announce it all." In other words, the Joe Gibbs Racing driver hasn't considered the proposition? "Not really." How many more years does the 2003 champion plan to race? "Fifteen to 20," he said with typical deadpan. "If Tom Brady can play football at 40 and still win Super Bowls, I think 45 is pretty young to try to win races." Still, it's notable that neither Kenseth nor team owner Joe Gibbs definitively said he would be in the #20 in 2018. Gibbs said the Circle K deal is multiyear, so does that mean Kenseth will be with the team in 2018? "I mean, I hope so," Kenseth said. "That's always my hope. The details of the sponsorship I mostly don't know. That would have to come from Coach or somebody there. I don't know any real details except the races they're on the car this year."(NBC Sports)[More](4-20-2017)

Circle K to sponsor Kenseth for six races Joe Gibbs Racing is scheduled to host a press conference at 2:00pm/et on Wednesday, April 19, 2017 at the NASCAR Hall of Fame in uptown Charlotte, N.C. that is scheduled to include team owner, Joe Gibbs, and the driver of the #20 Toyota Camry, Matt Kenseth.(JGR)
UPDATE: Joe Gibbs Racing welcomes Circle K to the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series with the company's first primary sponsorship in the sport aboard the #20 Toyota Camry with Matt Kenseth. Circle K is one of the largest fuel and convenience retailers in the US and has stores located in 41 states throughout the country.

Circle K has had branding on cars within NASCAR through vendor programs over the years. This is the first time the company has served as a primary sponsor within the sport. Circle K is pleased to serve as the primary sponsor for Kenseth and the #20 Toyota Camry for six races in 2017. The company will also have associate branding on the #20 Toyota in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series whenever they are not already serving as the primary sponsor.(JGR)[More](4-19-2017)

NASCAR will examine wall Kenseth hit at Auto Club Speedway: A NASCAR executive said series officials will work with Auto Club Speedway officials to see if there is a way to alter the angle of the inside wall Matt Kenseth hit in Sunday's Cup race. Kenseth hit a portion of the wall that was angled toward the track. Safety equipment was stationed behind that wall.[More](3-27-2017)

Tide PODS scheme for Kenseth at Phoenix Tide will return to the track for the first time in 2017 with Joe Gibbs Racing for the Camping World 500 at Phoenix. Reigniting a legacy that spanned across three decades, this is the first of a three-race primary sponsorship deal announced in February that will power Matt Kenseth's "Tide PODS Ride" this season. Careful thought went into the design creation of the 2017 #20 Tide PODS Toyota Camry, which is sure to turn heads on the track. This year's design pulls through cues from Tide's unforgettable orange and yellow colors with the iconic "Tide target" on the hood honoring the brand's 20-year racing history. Moving from front to back, the car is a visual representation of how Tide has evolved through the years introducing the revolutionary and powerful Tide PODS.(JGR)(3-18-2017)

Old World Industries and Joe Gibbs Racing Announce Multi-Year Partnership Old World Industries (OWI) and Joe Gibbs Racing announced a multi-year deal for the automotive aftermarket company and Official Partner of NASCAR to sponsor drivers Matt Kenseth and Daniel Suárez in various NASCAR national series races. Old World Industries' key brands, including PEAK and BlueDEF, will serve as primary sponsor of Kenseth's #20 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Toyota Camry at the March 12th race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, followed by the March 26th race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana. It will also be featured as a season-long associate sponsor of his No. 20 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Toyota Camry. In addition, the company will serve as primary sponsor on Suárez's #18 NASCAR XFINITY Series Toyota Camry in Talladega and as an associate in the remainder of his XFINITY Series races.[More](3-7-2017)

Interstate Batteries to sponsor Kenseth in Clash: Interstate Batteries will kick off its 26th season with Joe Gibbs Racing as part of Saturday night's Advanced Auto Parts Clash at Daytona International Speedway. It will be the first time in 12 years that the brand will be part of the event that serves as the unofficial season opener to the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. And the company is doing it in a big way, serving as the primary sponsor of the #20 JGR Toyota Camry entry and driver Matt Kenseth. Interstate Batteries has been a sponsor on the #18 JGR Toyota with driver Kyle Busch for select Cup Series races during the last nine NASCAR seasons but has not made a start in the annual Clash at Daytona since 2005. Prior to that, the brand had appeared on the #18 JGR entry with 2000 Cup Series champ Bobby Labonte, who made 10 straight starts in the Clash from 1994 to 2005 as the driver of the Interstate Batteries car. While Interstate Batteries is making its return to the Clash this weekend, Kenseth is aiming to improve upon an already impressive resume at the "World Center of Racing." The winner of the 2015 edition of the Clash, Kenseth will make his 11th start in the non-points event Saturday night when he jumps behind the wheel of the No. 20 Interstate Batteries Toyota. When the 2003 Cup Series Champ scored the victory in the Clash two years ago, he did so in fairly convincing fashion, leading 21 of the 75 laps run after starting 16th. In addition to the win, Kenseth's stats in the Clash feature three top-five finishes and six top-10s with 53 laps led and an average finish of 9.5. And while he only has one win in the Clash, Kenseth is no stranger to victory lane at Daytona.
He is a two-time winner of the iconic Daytona 500, winning the 2009 and 2012 editions of the Great American Race. In 34 career starts during points-paying races at the superspeedway, the Wisconsin-native has led at least one lap in 19 different races for a total of 362 laps led. In addition to the two Daytona 500 wins, Kenseth's record at Daytona includes six top-fives and 14 top-10 finishes. The 2017 season is Kenseth's 18th as a full-time driver in NASCAR's elite series. Like Interstate Batteries, he's been here for years and his goals are the same - to score wins and be in the hunt for a Cup Series championship when the season ends in November. That effort begins in earnest this weekend at Daytona. (JGR)(2-14-2017)

Spotter changes in 2017: Monday evening Fox Sports' Alan Cavana tweeted a list of known spotter changes in the Cup series this season:
#20-Matt Kenseth - Jason Hedlesky
#41-Kurt Busch - Tony Raines
#77-Erik Jones - Rick Carelli
#34-Landon Cassill - Freddie Kraft
AND: As previously announced, Kenseth's former spotter, Chris Osborne, will work with #19-Daniel Suarez.(2-1-2017)

Spotter changes at JGR UPDATE: Joe Gibbs Racing rookie #19-Daniel Suarez will have a familiar voice in his ear during Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series races this year. Chris Osborne, who spotted for Suarez during his 2016 Xfinity championship season, will now spot for Suarez in Cup. Osborne had been the Cup spotter for #20-Matt Kenseth, who will now use Jason Hedlesky, the former spotter for the recently retired Carl Edwards.(ESPN.com)(1-18-2017)
UPDATE: The surprising "retirement" of Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series driver Carl Edwards created more than just a driver opening for the Joe Gibbs Racing #19 team. It also resulted in the shuffling of spotters Chris "Crazy" Osborne and Jason Hedlesky. When JGR officials named Suarez to take over Edwards' spot, team officials thought it best to allow the XFINITY Series champion to continue working with Osborne for his rookie effort. That opened the door to pair Kenseth with Hedlesky. "With Carl's unexpected departure and putting Daniel in there, you know 'Crazy' has worked with Daniel the whole time through the XFINITY Series, the Truck Series," Kenseth said Tuesday during the first day of this year's NASCAR Media Tour hosted by Charlotte Motor Speedway. "He and 'Crazy' had that really good relationship and with Carl not being there and Jason being over (at the #19) I think everybody over there just decided to make the swap for the good of the company. Jason has always done a great job," Kenseth said. "There's always some pause, I guess, because you kind of learn each other, and that takes a little bit (of time) to do that. But I think it will be fine."(NASCAR.com)(1-25-2017)

Kenseth shocked by Edwards' decision not to race: The fallout of Carl Edwards' sudden retirement from NASCAR racing continues. During his session during Tuesday's NASCAR Media Tour in Charlotte, Matt Kenseth discussed his now-former teammate. And yet, Kenseth still can't believe there'll be a different driver in the #19 Toyota in 2017. "I was as surprised as anyone else," Kenseth said. "I knew it was bad news when - this is my fifth year here (with Joe Gibbs Racing), right? - and it was the first time we ever had a conference call with all the drivers and crew chiefs on a Sunday night, after all the football games." Kenseth said he's spoken to Edwards several time since the latter's retirement announcement, but is still as baffled today as ever. "I was very, very surprised," Kenseth said. "But the more I think about it, I wasn't shocked ... but I definitely didn't see it coming." The 2017 season, Kenseth's 20th season on the NASCAR Cup circuit, could be a very pivotal year for Kenseth. First, he turns 45 on March 10. Second, he's in the final year of his current contract with JGR (pending any extension in the future).(NBC Sports)(1-24-2017)

Kenseth's tire changer back on the job: Front tire changer John Royer has been a mainstay on the #20 crew for years. Earlier in the year John suffered a broken thumb and ligament damage in his changing hand. He was out from Darlington thru Charlotte and made his return two weekends ago in Kansas. Back up David Mayo had been changing on the #20 and did a good job anchoring the fronts.(Pit Talks)(10-28-2016)

Kenseth: no talks with JGR about his future, Hamlin in talks: #20-Matt Kenseth has no insight into the news that Furniture Row Racing owner Barney Visser isn't expecting Erik Jones, who currently drives for Joe Gibbs Racing in the Xfinity Series, to return to his team after his rookie season in Sprint Cup. Furniture Row Racing is expanding to a field a #77 Toyota for Jones, teaming with Martin Truex Jr.'s #78. Multiple sources have told NBC Sports that Jones could return to Joe Gibbs Racing in 2018 or 2019, and that several scenarios are being considered depending on the future status of drivers and sponsors. Gibbs has #11-Denny Hamlin, Kenseth, #19-Carl Edwards and #18-Kyle Busch under contract in Sprint Cup through next season, and the team also has Daniel Suarez running for a second consecutive full season in the Xfinity Series.
Kenseth, 44, said he hasn't discussed "the master plan for 2020" with team owner Joe Gibbs, though he was made aware of Jones' move to Furniture Row in 2017. "I've been involved in a lot of those talks, so I knew that was happening, but I can't say we've ever sat and had the conversation as to what exactly is 2018 going to look like and 2019," he said. "I don't think anybody probably knows 100% sure." Kenseth is sure he isn't considering retirement. "There's been times where I've been asked about (retirement) a lot," he said Tuesday. "Maybe you're not running as good and then you start thinking about it, 'Well, maybe is it time?' I don't really feel like I'm that close where I really can put a date on it to be honest. I feel great. More times than not, I'm having fun. I feel like we're really competitive more times than not. And we're capable of winning races, and I think we're capable of winning championships. That's just way on the bottom of my list of things to think about or worry about at the moment."
Joe Gibbs said it's "probably unclear some right now" what will happen with Jones after 2017, but the team owner said Jones would remain in Sprint Cup and wouldn't return to the Xfinity Series with JGR. Could Jones return to Joe Gibbs Racing in a Cup car? "I think Furniture Row wanted to make this step to go to two cars, so their future is going to be two cars," Gibbs said. "And whatever their future is past that, it's up to them. I think it's kind of what Erik does. Does he stay there longer than that? That's the question." Gibbs noted that Jones' 2017 sponsor, 5 Hour Energy, also has a one-year deal. "It's whatever Furniture Row wants to do," he said. "They came up with the sponsor and are going to be footing the bill for everything. They're going to be ramping up out there. I'm sure that 5 Hour is going to have their option of what they want to do. I think Furniture Row is going to try to put together their future. They've done a real good job of putting this thing together." Gibbs said his team is in negotiations on a contract extension with Hamlin, who is signed through next season. "It's still in the works," Gibbs said. "We're talking now."(NBC Sports)(8-17-2016)

Kenseth to make 600th Cup start: With the drop of the green flag on Sunday, #20-Matt Kenseth will make his 600th career Sprint Cup Series start in Sunday's Cheez-It 355 at Watkins Glen. Kenseth is the 25th driver to achieve the 600 start milestone in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (JGR), see full all-time list on the All-Time / Consecutive Starts page.(8-5-2016)

DEWALT Announces Expanded Partnership with Joe Gibbs Racing UPDATE: DEWALT Tools announced an expanded partnership with Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR). DEWALT has added four races to their 2016 primary sponsorship aboard the #20 Toyota Camry driven by Matt Kenseth for the upcoming races at Chicago, Dover, Kansas, and Homestead. DEWALT also announces that it will provide primary sponsorship for a total of six races in the NASCAR XFINITY Series for 2016 with drivers Erik Jones and Daniel Suarez. Beginning with the 2017 season, DEWALT will take over the primary sponsorship for the majority (15) of races on the #20 Toyota Camry in NASCAR's Sprint Cup Series. Along with the expanded schedule of primary paint schemes, DEWALT also has associate branding on the #20 Toyota in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series whenever they are not already serving as the primary sponsor. This partnership comes at a perfect time as DEWALT recently launched their breakthrough DEWALT FLEXVOLT system, which includes a radical new battery technology that will transform the power tools space. The proprietary battery technology platform provides users with multiple voltage outputs from a single DEWALT battery pack - 20V MAX, 60V MAX, and 120V MAX when two 60V MAX batteries are combined - thus giving users the power of corded with the freedom of cordless. Learn more about the DEWALT FLEXVOLT system and DEWALT's continual breakthrough innovation at DEWALT.com. DEWALT will have primary sponsorship with two cars this weekend at Daytona International Speedway to promote this launch. A special DEWALT FLEXVOLT paint scheme will appear on the #20 Toyota of Matt Kenseth in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series as well as the #20 Toyota of Erik Jones in the NASCAR XFINITY Series.
"We're thrilled to continue to work with Joe Gibbs Racing as NASCAR and DEWALT share a lot of commonalities," said Scott Bannell, Vice President for Corporate Brand Marketing, Stanley Black & Decker. "Our DEWALT FLEXVOLT launch ties perfectly to the power and freedom exemplified by racing." DEWALT will utilize NASCAR and JGR as one of the primary platforms to advocate the DEWALT FLEXVOLT message. "This is a multifaceted program." said Tony Merritt, Director of Motorsports, Stanley Black & Decker. "This is more than on-track visibility; it is a pillar of our end-user engagement strategy including trackside demos to get the products in the consumer's hands, unique content for our digital platforms, and VIP hospitality to host our customers. Our end-user advocates are passionate about motorsports and we will leverage this partnership to interact with them digitally as well as in person at the races."
"This an exciting day for us at Joe Gibbs Racing and for NASCAR," said Joe Gibbs, owner of Joe Gibbs Racing. "We are honored to be a part of what is really a historic announcement with the product launch of the DEWALT FLEXVOLT™ system and put in place an agreement that will continue our partnership for years to come."
"I think it's great that we will be able to see the DEWALT Toyota on track this year for additional races in both the Sprint Cup and XFINITY Series, as well as knowing that DEWALT will be on our #20 Camry for the majority of our 2017 races as well," said Matt Kenseth, "I've been so fortunate to be able to reunite with DEWALT these past two seasons, and knowing that we'll be together for even longer, is really fantastic news for all of us at JGR."(JGR PR), see images of the scheme on the #20 Team Schemes page.(6-30-2016)
UPDATES: Joe Gibbs Racing held a press conference with Matt Kenseth and Joe Gibbs at Daytona International Speedway, some of the Q&A's from the transcript:
Q) What are you announcing today?
JOE GIBBS, team owner: "I just wanted to say a big thanks to everybody for being here and everybody watching. This is a big day for us. As you know, in our sport one of the most important things we have is our partners and we're thrilled today is a happy day for us to be announcing that one of the most successful companies in America, DEWALT, will be our major sponsor - our primary sponsor - for 2017 on our 20 car, so we're thrilled to announce that. Also as you know, with Stanley Black and Decker they are also on our 19 car for 12 races, so it's a huge deal for us. Like I said, one of the most successful companies in the world and to have them be a part of our sport and a part of our race teams is a thrill for us. The DEWALT FLEXVOLT is going to be a major focus for us. I was looking at this - Pat (Gibbs, wife) might get a little upset that she's heading home with that. She might be a little afraid of what I'm going to do with this. This thing is powerful and we're here to kick off the FLEXVOLT program. This is going to change the way pro contractors go to work because they're going to have the freedom to go cordless and have the power to do that, so it's a huge deal for us. We mentioned the fact that Erik (Jones) and Daniel (Suarez) are here, so for the rest of this year there will be six FLEXVOLT races in the XFINITY program with Erik and there'll be one with Daniel and then there's going to be six Cup races - actually seven Cup races - with Matt (Kenseth), counting this weekend. So we're thrilled to announce that. It's a real thrill for us to have partners like this. We've got to know everybody inside the company. It's a thrill for us and we're excited about being here and so I think we've got some other things to kind of share with you."
Q) Has Joe Gibbs Racing signed an extension with Matt Kenseth and how many races will DEWALT have on his car?
GIBBS: "DEWALT will have 15 races next year and be the primary on that car. We don't talk about our contracts and stuff for drivers, but I will say this - our plan is Matt's (Kenseth) going to retire here, so that's what we'd say."
Q) Are you close to filling sponsorship for all of Matt Kenseth's races in 2017?
GIBBS: "We feel pretty confident right now. We've got some great things in the works. Nothing that we can announce right now, but we feel good about where we are with that car and this is a big step right here and so we feel confident that that car will be fully funded for next year."
MATT KENSETH, #20 DEWALT FLEXVOLT Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Q) What are your thoughts on the expanded partnership with DEWALT?
Kenseth: "For me, it's a dream come true really for DEWALT to come back. A couple years ago, I made my first Cup start with DEWALT and I hope to make my last Cup start with DEWALT - not today of course, but hopefully someday a few years down the road. They've been more than a great sponsor for me - they've been like family. I've made a lot of friends over there. They obviously make the best power tools in the world. I've always been proud to represent them, so really happy they signed on, took on a bigger role and I'm looking forward to getting the DEWALT colors back to victory lane."(Toyota Racing)(6-30-2016)

Dollar General Leaving as Primary Sponsor JGR's #20 after 2016: Dollar General will end its primary sponsorship of Joe Gibbs Racing's #20 Sprint Cup Series entry after this year and is not planning to align with a new team next year. The company, which has been with JGR since the 2012 season, currently has a 30-race deal -- one of the largest in the sport -- with the #20 Toyota driven by Matt Kenseth. It also has some track assets in NASCAR. Dollar General in a statement noted it has enjoyed a "great partnership" with JGR, but said, "Our strategy to reallocate our future marketing assets into new programs is strictly a business decision to align our priorities to better serve our customers in this rapidly changing retail environment." For JGR, Dollar General's departure will leave a big void to fill. Though the team is almost, if not entirely, sold out of inventory for the foreseeable future for its other three Sprint Cup cars, landing 30-race deals with a single company is an increasingly tough task in the sport. JGR is expected to announce a deal or deals to fill the void that will be left by Dollar General in the next month or so. Other primary sponsors of the #20 include Stanley Black & Decker and Dewalt, and it is possible that either they or sponsors of JGR's other cars could step up to help fill the hole.(Sports Business Daily)(5-23-2016)

Kenseth says he has no plans to retire in near future: Although #20-Matt Kenseth hasn't won this season and has just one top-10 finish, he's exhibited as much speed as his teammates. His 164 laps led is third among the JGR drivers. Kenseth just doesn't have the results to show for it. So why are pundits and fans questioning Kenseth's future in the sport? "This is turning into a huge retirement topic right now for some odd reason--I'm not sure why and I'm getting a little bit of a complex about it," Kenseth said sarcastically. With Jeff Gordon, 44, stepping out of the seat last year - and Kenseth turning the same age last month, comparisons are inevitable. The recent retirements of Peyton Manning, who will be an honorary race official and guest of Dale Earnhardt Jr. on Sunday, and Kobe Bryant certainly have fueled the topic. But perhaps the greatest reason the rumor won't die is the long list of development drivers JGR has waiting in the wings - particularly Saturday's Xfinity Series winner Erik Jones and points leader Daniel Suarez. Kenseth's not going anywhere But Kenseth's boss, Joe Gibbs, insists emphatically his senior driver's future is secure. "Kenseth's future is - we love him," Gibbs says with a laugh. "I can tell you that right now. We love Matt Kenseth. He's a big part of our program. We don't need to announce anything. He's solid." Kenseth said retirement was the farthest thing from his mind. "I feel incredibly good, I'm driving I think arguably the best team in the sport, love the guys I'm working with and we're still really competitive," Kenseth said. "Our sport is just so different. I think you see a lot of people not go out on their own terms because they keep trying to do it for too long because they can still get a job and they can still maybe get in stuff that's maybe not as good, but somebody is still going to hire them."(in part from Motorsport)(4-17-2016)

Joe Gibbs Racing Launches Pit Road with Pals Game App: Joe Gibbs Racing announced the launch of their new interactive pit crew competition app: Pit Road with Pals. The new version of the popular pit stop game is now available for download on all Apple and Android devices. Pit Road With Pals App is a free app and provides fans the opportunity to test their skills in all facets of a pit stop. New to this version is the opportunity to play with friends in a best-of-three round competition style similar to many popular word games.(more info and links on JGRs Facebook page)(8-27-2015)

JD Gibbs being treated for symptoms impacting areas of brain function UPDATE: Joe Gibbs Racing announces today that J.D. Gibbs, president of Joe Gibbs Racing, is starting treatment for symptoms impacting areas of brain function. Gibbs has undergone a series of tests after experiencing a gradual onset of symptoms that includes speech and processing issues. Gibbs' doctors believe the complications he has experienced were triggered by head injuries likely suffered earlier in life, but no specific injury was referenced or identified. Gibbs has always enjoyed an active life participating in several sports including mountain biking, snowboarding, football, racing, and other extreme-type sports. Gibbs will be undergoing more testing and receiving treatments to help manage the symptoms. During that time, it is expected that his presence at the race track will be limited; however, he will continue many of his day-to-day responsibilities at JGR's headquarters in Huntersville, NC as well as involvement with his various ministry endeavors.(Joe Gibbs Racing)
Statement from Brian France: "All members of the NASCAR and France family extend our thoughts and prayers to J.D. Gibbs and his loved ones. We've all watched J.D. grow up within our community, and he always has represented himself, his family, the entire Joe Gibbs Racing organization and NASCAR with the utmost professionalism, enthusiasm and energy. We wish him the best during this time and eagerly anticipate his recovery."(NASCAR)(3-25-2015)
UPDATE: Joe Gibbs addressed the media Sunday morning at Martinsville:
"J.D. at our team meeting earlier this week, he got up and basically he said, 'I know God has a plan and God puts us through things for a reason.' I think J.D. gains his strength from the fact that he has a personal relationship with the Lord and I have to tell you that he's my hero. I kind of watch him and I don't know if anybody has ever dealt with anything as crazy as J.D. does. He went through a situation with his son Taylor having leukemia at two and we fought through that for about three or four years. By the way, appreciate all of you all's prayers for Taylor and Taylor's doing great today. Like I said, J.D. through his entire life has probably been the craziest person that I've ever been around or knew. Basically, his situation medically - there's very few answers. We've been dealing with this for about six months and basically what the doctor's say is that they really don't know. J.D. has lived a very active lifestyle. All the things that he's done in his life physically he's loved all sporting events and it's everything from football to snowboarding, racing cars, racing motor bikes - he's lived in a lot of ways for him, he loved all those things. We can't point to any one serious thing that happened to him, certainly any injury is a possibility that led us into some of the symptoms that he's experiencing now.
We've been dealing with this for about six months so as far as the management team for Joe Gibbs Racing, we have a senior management team and most of our people have been in place for the full 24 years - it's amazing really. I think very few people have noticed anything or any difference in the way we operate with the race team. The good thing there is that J.D. and I share the same responsibilities. If I'm not there for a particular reason, J.D. will be there and if J.D. is not there for some reason, I'll be there. As he goes through treatment, he will probably be doing less at the race track because he has a full week that demands quite a bit from him as he goes through treatment. You will probably see less of him at the race track, but he'll be there on a day-to-day basis with the race team and be in all of our meetings and all of the key decisions that we make, J.D.'s going to have a huge impact on that.(Toyota Racing)(3-29-2015)

Artwork by Garry Hill: "NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge 2004" - Matt Kenseth In The Roush Racing Ford
Battles Past A Sliding Ryan Newman For The Lead On His Way To Victory In The NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge Race
At Lowe's Motor Speedway May 22, 2004. Garry Hill is pleased to present the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge 2004.
The artwork captures the defining moment of the event as Matt Kenseth takes the lead from Ryan Newman. 500 prints and 50 artist's proof prints have been produced each signed and numbered by NASCAR licensed artist Garry Hill. Since 1987 Garry Hill has had the distinct honor and privilege of creating the artwork to commemorate the annual all-star race. More info at garryhill.com

#20 Team News Archive