Saturday marks the first time the NASCAR Nationwide Series will test at Daytona International Speedway since the 2008 season. The testing means a lot of new drivers in new places and plenty of news came out of the NASCAR Nationwide Series garage Friday morning.
The first bit of news came from Biagi-DenBeste Racing and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver David Ragan. The team announced that Ragan, a two time NASCAR Nationwide Series winner, will drive the team's #98 Ford in the season opening Drive4COPD 300 at Daytona International Speedway on Saturday, February 22nd. Ragan has 99 career Nationwide Series starts and is known as one of the better restrictor plate racers on the circuit today. Biagi-DenBeste is a team in their third year and has had youngster Kevin Swindell drive their Ford the past few seasons. Ragan will look to get the team off to a good start at Daytona International Speedway. Ragan also drives the #34 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford for Front Row Motorsports.
Tri-Star Motorsports was also in the news Friday morning announcing that Florida native Blake Koch will drive the entire 2014 NASCAR Nationwide Series schedule for the team. Koch has made 86 career Nationwide Series starts and is excited for his opportunity in the 2014 season.
"I'm extremely excited, blessed and proud to join TriStar Motorsports," said Koch. "Mark Smith has been in NASCAR for a long time and is respected by everyone in the garage. His team has evolved into a quality race team with continuous growth and a great reputation. There are talented people in place to build fast race cars and we will have strong Toyota engines supplied by his company, Pro Motor Engines. I'm also looking forward to working with teammates that I can lean on like Mike Bliss and Eric McClure. Daytona can't come soon enough!"
The team will also announce sponsorship for their Toyota in the coming weeks.
Another Earnhardt made the news on Friday and this time it was Jeffrey Earnhardt son of Kerry Earnhardt and grandson of Dale Earnhardt. Jeffrey Earnhardt will drive the #4 Chevrolet for JD Motorsports in 2014. Earnhardt has 27 career NASCAR Nationwide Series starts, 17 coming in the 2013 season driving for Go Green Racing. Earnhardt will run his first full time season in NASCAR as the team is looking for sponsorship opportunities for the 2014 season.
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