Christopher Bell will drive for Leavine Family Racing in 2020; Amplified Joe Gibbs Racing alliance
The Toyota Racing Development team has a pipeline issue. Too many good drivers sit in the development portions of the camp.
Meanwhile, at the top, the seats are filled. Erik Jones recently signed a contact extension which confirmed a lack of an opening at Joe Gibbs Racing.
Meanwhile, Leavine Family Racing announced they would not bring back Matt DiBenedetto. DiBenedetto has since lanced with Wood Brother Racing.
As expected, Christopher Bell will fill the role within Leavine Family Racing. The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series team has ties to Joe Gibbs Racing.
The alliance between Joe Gibbs Racing and Leavine Family Racing will be amplified in 2020.
According to the release, “TRD will continue to build the team’s engines and provide technology, data and technical assistance. Enhancements to the technical alliance between JGR and LFR, which began with the 2019 MENCS season, will continue to build into the 2020 season.”
Bob Leavine on Christopher Bell
“I’ve said from the start, I want this team to be competitive,” said Bob Leavine, LFR team founding owner. “Christopher is one of the most talented drivers we’ve seen come up through NASCAR’s ranks and together, with JGR and Toyota’s support, I’m confident our team will continue to grow, just as it has this past year.”
“We’re certainly happy to continue to progress our relationship with both JGR and TRD as the technical partnership takes the next step forward,” Leavine concluded.
Christopher Bell on the move to Leavine Family Racing
“Since I was young, I wanted to make a career out of racing,” said Bell.
“To take this next step and race in the NASCAR Cup Series with the support of LFR, JGR and Toyota is just a dream come true. It also means a lot to me to have Rheem make the move to Cup racing with me. I wouldn’t be in the position I am today without their support and I’m also excited to have the opportunity to represent Procore now.
“Having been under the JGR banner these past seasons in the Xfinity Series and with TRD for as long as I can remember, having their continued support as I transition to LFR is extremely comforting and will be a tremendous benefit to me.”
“I can’t wait to close out this season in the Xfinity Series with a strong run, and I’m looking forward to the challenge that awaits in 2020.”
David Wilson on Christopher Bell
“TRD and Toyota have worked with Bell since his early dirt track career and we’ve been proud to see him work his way to NASCAR’s highest level,” said David Wilson, president of TRD.
“Christopher is a special talent and we’re happy to have him winning races and championships in a Toyota. We look forward to seeing his continued growth and success at Leavine Family Racing in 2020.”
“We’re also pleased with how the relationship between JGR and LFR has progressed during their first season working together. We’re confident this enhanced alliance for 2020 will continue to make them a threat for race wins week in and week out.”