Crew Chief Swap At JR Motorsports

Dale Earnhardt, Jr\'s NNS

(WOMR file photo)

JR Motorsports made a move today to attempt to improve on track performance.  It was announced today that the JR Motorsports #88 and #5 Nationwide teams would swap crew chiefs.

Crew chief Bruce Cook has taken over responsibilities for the #88 Chevrolets driven by Cole Whitt. Cook has spearheaded the organization’s third team, a part-time entry primarily driven by Dale Earnhardt Jr., while assisting the company’s two full-schedule teams.

That role will now fall to Tony Eury Sr., who takes charge of the #5 team while continuing his role as JR Motorsports’ competition director.

Tony Eury Jr.’s role as crew chief for Danica Patrick and the  #7 team remains unchanged.

“Our teams have a tremendous responsibility not only to perform at the standards we set for ourselves but reflect the commitment to excellence of our sponsors,” said general manager and co-owner Kelley Earnhardt Miller. “Our on-track performance isn’t meeting those standards, and we felt a change was necessary.”

The #5 car will race at Texas next weekend with Earnhardt Jr. and sponsor Degree Men. The crew chief change reunites Earnhardt Jr. with Eury Sr. The pair won 15 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races between 2000 and 2004 as well as Nationwide Series championships in 1998 and 1999.

The pairing of Cook and Whitt gives one of the series’ hottest young drivers a crew chief that just last year won six NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races, one Nationwide Series race, and a truck series owners championship. Through five races this season, the #88 team has one top-five and two top-10s. Whitt, a rookie driver from Alpine, Calif., is currently sixth in the series point standings. His best finish, to date, is a fourth at Daytona. JR Motorsports’ last win came with Jamie McMurray on Sept. 4, 2010.

With this latest change at JR Motorsports, it would appear that they are intent in trying to enrich their weekly performances, and ultimately try to secure the Nationwide driver and owner championship.

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