Nineteen-year-old Earns First Career NASCAR Title
HOMESTEAD, Fla. (Nov. 23, 2015) – Tundra driver Erik Jones captured the 2015 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) driver’s championship when he finished sixth in Friday night’s season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
Jones clinched his first-career NASCAR title by 15 points over second-place driver Tyler Reddick in his Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM) No. 4 Toyota Tundra by winning three races this season at Iowa, Canada and Texas. The 19-year-old Byron, Michigan native also earned five pole positions at Kansas, Texas, Iowa, Pocono and Phoenix. In his first full-time NCWTS season, Jones recorded 11 top-five results, 20 top-10 finishes and led 925 laps in 23 races this season.
“I think a lot of it was just being with a great team here in Kyle Busch Motorsports and bringing great Tundras to the race track every week,” said Jones. “I think there were definitely times in the year when I didn’t think we’d be able to do this and looking back and seeing the deficit we were in at some points and just being able to really pull together and make this all happen here at the end of the year, it was just so, so special for everybody here. I couldn’t think of a better way to thank them.”
The 2015 title marks the sixth NCWTS driver’s championship for Toyota since the manufacturer began competing in the series with the Tundra in 2004. In addition to Jones’ 2015 championship, fellow Tundra racer Matt Crafton became the first driver in series history to win back-to-back championships in 2013 and 2014, Todd Bodine claimed a pair of driver’s titles (2006 and 2010) and Johnny Benson won the NCWTS champion in 2008.
Jones also won NCWTS Rookie of the Year honors, becoming the first NCWTS driver to clinch both titles in the same season. It also marks the first NCWTS driver’s championship for Kyle Busch Motorsports, and the team also clinched the 2015 NCWTS Owner’s Championship.
“Congratulations to Erik Jones and Kyle Busch Motorsports on winning the Truck Series driver’s championship,” said Ed Laukes, vice president of marketing, performance and guest experience for Toyota Motor Sales (TMS), U.S.A. “It’s a tremendous accomplishment for Erik to get Kyle Busch Motorsports its first driver’s title and we are thrilled for Kyle and Samantha. Erik is a confident young man and a talented race car driver and we believe this is just the first of many NASCAR championships to come during his racing career.”
Tundra drivers won 14 events, 12 pole positions and led 2,347 laps in 2015, and their on-track success also enabled Toyota to secure its eighth NCWTS manufacturer’s championship (2006-2010, 2013-2015) since entering the NCWTS 12 years ago in 2004.
Toyota has earned a total of 144 victories since joining the NCWTS in 2004.
The NCWTS will return to action Friday, Feb. 19 at the season-opening race at Daytona International Speedway.
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