News came out Tuesday (July 11) of a driver replacement in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. Driver Matt Kenseth is being replaced by young driver Erik Jones by Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) in 2018.

The change came as no surprise, not even to Kenseth. This is a driver change being made by Joe Gibbs Racing for the number 20 Toyota.

Gibbs has the utmost respect for Kenseth, who has driven for the team since 2013. Since driving for Gibbs, Kenseth has won 14 times and also led 4,376 laps, second only at JGR to 2015 champion Kyle Busch.

“Matt has been a tremendous asset to our organization over the past five seasons both on and off the track,” Joe Gibbs, owner of Joe Gibbs Racing, said in a team release.

Kenseth has had a great career, winning the championship in 2003. It is unclear what the future holds for him now as far as his career. The 45-year old driver has 38 career victories.

The 21-year old Jones is a Gibbs development driver. He is in his rookie year currently in Cup racing driving the Furniture Row Racing number 77 car recording five top-10 finishes in the first 18 races, including a season-best third-place showing at Pocono.

Jones is an exciting driver with eight victories in the NASCAR XFINITY Series and seven wins in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, where he was the series champion in 2015.


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