Ryan Preece is ready to get back to work – and winning – for Joe Gibbs Racing.
Preece, who racked up a win and four top-five finishes in five NASCAR Xfinity Series starts for JGR last season, begins his expanded series schedule for JGR in Saturday’s Service King 300 at Auto Club Speedway.
Saturday is the first of 10 scheduled races for Preece, 27, this season.
“I am really excited to be racing the No. 18 Rheem Camry in Fontana this weekend. Auto Club Speedway is a worn out 2-mile track that replicates a short-track,” Preece said. “There will be a lot of moving around on the track and it will lead to some great racing.
“This is a big deal for me, having a sponsor like Rheem team up with me for my first start of 2018. I am looking forward to getting on track and hopefully ending the race in Victory Lane.”
Preece had been a successful star in the modified ranks – winning the 2013 Whelen Modified Tour championship – and ran one full Xfinity season with JD Motorsports in 2016 hoping to catch a break with a big team.
Last summer, he gathered sponsorship funds for a two-race Xfinity deal with JGR, which typically has one of the series’ top programs, in order to showcase his talent.
It worked. He finished second at New Hampshire and two weeks later at Iowa, earned his first series victory.
Preece hopes this season’s expanded series schedule with JGR is a precursor to establishing a successful full-time NASCAR career.
“I’m not a racer to just be out there. I’m a racer to get those trophies, and be accomplished,” he said. “And be remembered in this sport.”