Story By: SAM HUNT RACING – MOORESVILLE, NC – Sam Hunt Racing (SHR) has announced that Ryan Truex and Jeffrey Earnhardt will run races for the team in 2022.
Truex will pilot the No. 26 Circle B Diecast Toyota GR Supra in the Beef. It’s What’s for Dinner. 300 at Daytona International Speedway on Saturday, February 19 while Earnhardt will pilot the car for multiple races. ForeverLawn, a major benefactor in Earnhardt’s career, will join forces with Sam Hunt Racing for Jeffrey’s campaign.
Truex, who will be returning to NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS) competition for the first time since 2019, intends to add additional races with the team at a later date. SHR Technical Director and Crew Chief Allen Hart will lead the No. 26 team atop the pit box at the 2.5-mile superspeedway.
“Being able to work with Ryan, not only a real talent, but one of my best friends, is definitely one of the coolest opportunities I’ve had as a car owner,” said Sam Hunt, one of NASCAR’s youngest team owners in the NXS. “He’s a proven driver and well deserving, and he can also help continue SHR’s growth with his experience and knowledge of where we are at as a team. We know each other far past the sport, and we have been able to lend advice to one another prior to this as friends. Anytime you get to go to work with one of your favorite people – I see it as a win. We will have a beautiful, fast Circle B Diecast Toyota GR Supra in Daytona, and I believe a real shot to stir the pot and contend for a win. Ryan will be a big part of SHR’s growth both on and off the track in 2022.”
Truex, a two-time ARCA Menards Series East champion, will be making his 79th career start in the NXS. Throughout his seven years in the NXS, Truex has collected two top-three finishes, four top-five finishes, 24 top-10 finishes, and one pole starting position. The 29-year-old’s career best finish is second place at Dover International Raceway in 2012 and Phoenix International Raceway in 2019.
“Sam and I have known each other for a long time. We’ve become great friends and I’ve watched him build Sam Hunt Racing into the powerhouse it is today,” said Ryan Truex. “I’m thankful that our friendship has grown into a business relationship and for the opportunity Sam has given me. I will give it everything I’ve got to get SHR and Circle B Diecast a solid finish at Daytona.”
Circle B Diecast will be the primary partner of the No. 26 Toyota GR Supra for the 300-mile event. The company was founded in 2010 with the goal of bringing service to dealers that carry licensed motorsports products. Circle B Diecast product offerings include Lionel Racing, Auto World, Greenlight Collectibles, BrandArt, Checkered Flag Sports Apparel, SMI Apparel and University of Racing.
“I’m looking forward to having Ryan behind the wheel of another one of our Circle B Diecast machines at Daytona,” said Brent Powell, the president of Circle B Diecast. “This livery is a little different but definitely encompasses the vibe of Sam Hunt Racing. It’ll be great to see the Circle B Diecast paint scheme on track in the first race back for the NASCAR Xfinity Series.”
The green flag for the Beef. It’s What’s for Dinner. 300 at Daytona International Speedway is set to drop at 5:00pm ET on Saturday, February 19. The event will be broadcasted on FOX Sports 1, the Motor Racing Network, and SiriusXM NASCAR Channel 90.
Additional races will be announced at a later time.
Earnhardt, a 32-year-old NXS veteran, is looking forward to re-joining the Toyota Racing family with Sam Hunt Racing. He has 131 previous starts in the NXS, racking up one top-5 and three top-10 finishes. Earnhardt has 217 overall NASCAR National Touring Series starts across Cup, NXS and Trucks. Additionally, he has experience in NASCAR’s Pinty’s and Euro Series, ARCA Menards East Series, as well as Rolex GrandAm Sports Car Series.
“Having Jeffrey join Sam Hunt Racing is really exciting for our entire team and the Toyota Racing family,” said Sam Hunt, the 28-year-old team owner. “Jeffrey is a great guy, and he’s someone I’ve always admired for how he carries himself on and off the track. He’s a great person, and his sponsors at ForeverLawn match a lot of what SHR stands for. It’s going to be a fun season with him and the ForeverLawn team, and we’re excited to get to work.”
Sam Hunt Racing began its journey in the NXS in late 2019 by making its first start in the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. The SHR team shocked the industry with its speed after qualifying 15th in its first attempt. The 2020 NXS season was a part-time effort for the team as it began to expand and grow. In 2021, SHR hosted eight drivers of various skill-level in its first full-time season, racking up one Top-5, two Top-10, and nine top-15 finishes.
“I’m really excited to be back in the Toyota camp. My past experience with them was incredible, and they do a great job supporting their drivers,” said Earnhardt. “Sam and I formed a nice friendship over the years, and I’m impressed with what he’s achieved in a short amount of time. I feel like we share the same work ethic, and both of us are working hard to achieve our dreams. Having ForeverLawn in our corner is truly a gift. They have become my family, and our relationship extends well beyond racing. We
have three like minded parties working together towards a common goal. It’s going to be an exciting year.”
SHR welcomes ForeverLawn, a landscape company that specializes in improving spaces and communities through innovative synthetic grass solutions. Sam Hunt Racing is excited to have ForeverLawn in the family.
“We’re excited to continue supporting Jeffrey in this partnership with Sam Hunt Racing,” says Dale Karmie, co-founder of ForeverLawn. “Sam Hunt Racing is an up and coming team with quality people and equipment with an impressive record of success. We’re excited by the opportunity these races provide for us to deepen our relationship with this high caliber team.”
All of Earnhardt’s races will be announced at a later date.