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Ross Chastain (born December 4, 1992) is an American professional stock car racing driver. He currently competes full-time in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, driving the No. 10 Chevrolet Camaro for Kaulig Racing and the No. 4 Camaro for JD Motorsports, full-time in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, driving the No. 15 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 for Premium Motorsports, and part-time in the NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series, driving the No. 45 Chevrolet Silverado for Niece Motorsports.

Ross Chastain
Ross Chastain Dover 2018.png
Chastain at Dover International Speedway in 2018
Born (1992-12-04) December 4, 1992 (age 26)
Alva, Florida
Achievements2011 World Series of Asphalt Champion
Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series career
48 races run over 2 years
Car no., teamNo. 15 (Premium Motorsports)
2018 position58th
Best finish54th (2017)
First race2017 AAA 400 Drive for Autism (Dover)
Last race2019 Digital Ally 400 (Kansas)
Wins Top tens Poles
0 1 0
NASCAR Xfinity Series career
149 races run over 6 years
Car no., teamNo. 10 (Kaulig Racing)
No. 4 (JD Motorsports)
2018 position10th
Best finish10th (2018)
First race2014 History 300 (Charlotte)
Last race2019 Allied Steel Buildings 200 (Dover)
First win2018 DC Solar 300 (Las Vegas)
Wins Top tens Poles
1 16 1
NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series career
67 races run over 8 years
Truck no., teamNo. 45 (Niece Motorsports)
2018 position96th
Best finish17th (2012)
First race2011 AAA Insurance 200 (IRP)
Last race2019 Digital Ally 250 (Kansas)
First win2019 Digital Ally 250 (Kansas)
Wins Top tens Poles
1 23 2
Statistics current as of May 17, 2019.

Chastain's first victory in NASCAR competition came in the 2018 DC Solar 300, driving for CGR and sweeping all three race stages.

Contents

Early careerEdit

Chastain started racing at the age of twelve, his interest piqued by his father's hobby racing and other kids his age racing.[1] His home track was Punta Gorda Speedway in Punta Gorda, Florida,[2] at the age of twelve, competing in both late model and Fastruck Series events.[3] Even those races, at tracks like Citrus County Speedway, Auburndale Speedway and DeSoto Speedway, were run on a tight budget, a theme that would carry on to much of Chastain's career in the higher ranks of NASCAR.[4] His short track career saw Chastain scoring over fifty wins in feature events, including the 2011 World Series of Asphalt at New Smyrna Speedway, winning three of eight events in the series.[5][6]

NASCAREdit

 
Chastain at Bristol Motor Speedway in 2015

After making the move to Charlotte in mid-2011, Chastain took over the No. 66 Turn One Racing entry in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series after Justin Marks vacated the seat. His first Truck race, at Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis, was his first race with live pit stops.[7] He finished 10th in that event.[5] Connections in the watermelon farming industry got Chastain four more races, which were marred by incidents at Bristol Motor Speedway and Kentucky Speedway. At Homestead-Miami Speedway, rain prevented the Turn One team from making the race, so the team bought an RSS Racing start and park entry and ran the full race, finishing two laps down.[7] It was later announced that Chastain would compete for Rookie of the Year honors with SS-Green Light Racing in 2012.[8] Driving the No. 08 truck sponsored by the National Watermelon Association and National Watermelon Promotion Board,[9] he scored a career-best finish of seventh in the second race of the season at Martinsville Speedway.[10] He bested his 7th-place finish with a 3rd-place finish at Bristol in August.[11]

In January 2013, it was announced that Chastain would drive in 15 Camping World Truck Series races in 2013 for Brad Keselowski Racing.[12] At Iowa Speedway in September, Chastain won his first career Truck Series pole for the Fan Appreciation 200;[13] he led the most laps in the race, finishing second to James Buescher as the race underwent a green-white-checkered finish.[14] Chastain also came close to the win at the penultimate race at Phoenix, finishing second to Erik Jones after leading over 60 laps. Years later, Chastain said that he initially made the move to BKR as an attempt to get in a Team Penske ride, but that BKR and Penske did not view the situation that way.[7]

2014–2016Edit

Leaving BKR after the 2013 season, Chastain moved to RBR Enterprises for a part-time schedule in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series for 2014.[15] Comments before and after the Martinsville race, as well as racing actions during the race, led the team to fire Chastain from the ride.[1] In May, he announced he would make his debut in the Nationwide Series (now Xfinity Series) at Charlotte Motor Speedway, driving the No. 55 for Viva Motorsports.[16] Chastain later drove for Hattori Racing Enterprises at Michigan International Speedway, replacing Johnny Sauter. If that opportunity did not arise, Chastain was set to replace another driver that weekend, John Wes Townley in the No. 5 Wauters Motorsports truck at Gateway Motorsports Park.[17] In the race with HRE, Chastain finished twelfth, which was to that point the team's best finish in NASCAR competition.[18] The finish eventually turned into more sporadic appearances with HRE throughout the rest of the season.[19] Chastain also joined the team for a part-time NASCAR K&N Pro Series East effort that year.[20]

 
2015 Xfinity Series car at Road America

He then joined JD Motorsports in 2015, replacing Jeffrey Earnhardt. The opportunity emerged after Chastain raced with TriStar Motorsports at the end of the 2014 season. His car was comparable to the performances of the JDM cars, which led to a deal in the offseason.[7] Chastain logged one top-ten on the year, a ninth in the season-opening PowerShares QQQ 300, and got into an altercation with Ryan Reed after a race at Richmond International Raceway. Reed claimed Chastain made too much contact on late restarts and vowed payback, while Chastain simply brushed the incident off as a difference of opinions in short-track racing.[21]

2017Edit

Chastain's 2017 Xfinity season was the best of his career, scoring a top five at Iowa and two top tens as well as finishing 13th in points, highest of the non-playoff drivers.[22] He achieved this after a tight points battle with J.J. Yeley for the spot in the last four races of the season. In the second half of the season, Chastain rarely finished outside the top twenty and mainly finished in the mid-teens.

The season was marred by two fights with fellow Xfinity drivers, one with Jeremy Clements at Bristol after Clements confronted him[23] and one with Brendan Gaughan at Texas after heated on-track competition. Chastain, Gaughan and crew members from both teams brawled behind Victory Lane at the conclusion of the night race. A crew member from JD Motorsports teammate Garrett Smithley was taken to the hospital with a head injury after the fight.[24] Chastain blamed the confrontation on Gaughan, saying the Richard Childress Racing driver attacked him, but also acknowledged that he races hard and does not play favorites. Gaughan initially avoided discussing the incident with reporters[25] but later boasted about the incident on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio and said that he received several text messages from fellow drivers who were happy about the incident. He did admit that he could've handled the situation later but didn't really care about it.[26] That opinion was likely influenced by the fact that 2017 was Gaughan's final Xfinity season, as any retaliation would have to happen within the next two races.

In 2017, Chastain joined Premium Motorsports' No. 15 car for his Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series debut in the AAA 400 Drive for Autism at Dover,[27] an opportunity he initially resisted after being informed of the opportunity by Xfinity team owner Johnny Davis.[28] he finished 20th.[29] Chastain heard from various sources that his driving style made multiple drivers mad on-track, but Chastain says it doesn't bother him.[30] He also drove the No. 15 at the fall Dover race, finishing 38th.[31] Chastain was originally on the entry list to drive the No. 7 car, the second car for Premium Motorsports, at the Cup series season finale at Homestead, but the team withdrew.

2018Edit

In late September 2017, Chastain announced that he would return to JD Motorsports for a fourth year, running the entire 2018 NASCAR Xfinity Series season, as well as hinting at another part-time Cup schedule with Premium Motorsports.[32][33] He started off the Xfinity season with a top-ten at Daytona International Speedway,[34] and ran his first Cup race of 2018 the week after at Atlanta Motor Speedway. By the Easter off weekend, Chastain had expanded his Cup schedule, which had included every race since Atlanta, to all of the race weekends where the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series and NASCAR Xfinity Series run at the same track.[35] Chastain also returned to the truck series at Iowa on an off week for the Cup Series and a companion race with the Xfinity Series, driving the No. 50 truck for Beaver Motorsports. He continued to run most of the Cup schedule, running the entirety of the summer schedule save for the Sonoma Raceway event, where Justin Marks drove.[36] Chastain tied his career-best finish Xfinity Series finish at Iowa Speedway, avoiding last-lap chaos to bring home another fourth-place finish.[37] At the Xfinity Series race at Mid-Ohio, Chastain and Joey Gase made contact multiple times on the final lap, eventually leading Gase to spin off track. On pit road after the race, Gase swerved his car toward Chastain with spectators and crew members in the vicinity. The two later had a shouting match and Gase was tackled by one of Chastain's crew members. After a trip to the NASCAR hauler, Gase called Chastain a "golden boy" and threatened to derail Chastain's playoff hopes.[38] Chastain hopped in the Premium Motorsports No. 15 truck for the World of Westgate 200 and finished seventh, Premium's best-ever finish across all three NASCAR national series.[39]

 
Chastain during practice at Dover in October 2018

On the strength of a summer performance that saw him hold down the final Xfinity Series playoff spot, Chastain and Chip Ganassi Racing announced a three-race agreement for Chastain to pilot the organization's No. 42 entry for races at Darlington Raceway, Las Vegas Motor Speedway and Richmond Raceway.[40] The races came at the expense of John Hunter Nemechek, who could not sell sponsorship for the races. DC Solar was announced as a backer for Chastain's effort.[36] Chastain had previously met the CEO of DC Solar at Auto Club Speedway in 2018, and plans materialized from there.[41] For the first race of the trio, Chastain held top-ten spots in both practices, finishing second in first practice.[42] He later claimed the pole over Christopher Bell,[43] and during the race won the first two stages.[44] During the third stage, Chastain was battling for the race lead with Kevin Harvick with thirty-five laps to go. Through turns one and two of the traditionally one-groove Darlington track, the lapped car of Chad Finchum took the top-groove racing lane, leaving Harvick and Chastain jostling for positions in the bottom lanes. After clearing Finchum, Harvick slid up into Chastain who then slid up into the wall. On the backstretch, Chastain hooked Harvick's machine into the outside wall, ending Harvick's day.[44] Harvick later parked in Chastain's pit stall before giving a heated post-race interview calling Chastain "inexperienced" and saying that Chastain will "never get to drive many of them [events in top-tier cars] again. Chip Ganassi then responded on Twitter, defending Chastain's performance and stating that he "helped himself to many future opportunities"."[45] Chastain, for his part, finished 25th after repairs and called running up front "cool" and also saying "I don't care what Harvick says."[46]

"No matter what happens, if I go back to the farm tomorrow ... which I’m going to do one day after racing's over, if I had to back tomorrow I'll have no regrets, obviously."

Chastain in a TV interview after the race[47]

After running a race with JD Motorsports at Indianapolis, Chastain returned to CGR for the DC Solar 300 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. He once again performed well throughout the weekend, securing the second-fastest time in final practice and the fifth starting spot for the race.[48][49] Once again the class of the field, Chastain led all but twenty of the 200 laps in the race and prevailed over Justin Allgaier for the victory, his first in over 200 starts in NASCAR.[50] True to his roots, Chastain smashed a watermelon on the track as a final victory celebration.[50] In a post-race media conference, he admitted to getting emotional in the closing laps of the race due to the gravity of the win.[51] With the win, a playoff berth was wrapped up, the first of his career.[52] Chastain also revealed that he was not being paid to drive the car, something that he claimed was reason for ridicule within the sport.[53] Chastain fell out of the playoffs after the opening round after Matt Tifft made a late-race rally at Dover, claiming the final spot by three points.[54]

Towards the latter part of the 2018 season, Chastain joined Niece Motorsports for some NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races. Although some were surprised at how well Chastain ran in those races, Chastain instead said that the organization was better than the community gave it credit for.[7]

2019Edit

On October 6, 2018, it was reported that Chastain had agreed to drive the 2019 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season with Premium Motorsports, and a deal with Chip Ganassi Racing for more Xfinity Series races was likely.[55] On November 9, 2018, Chastain and CGR announced a full season in the No. 42 Xfinity Series car for 2019. DC Solar, instrumental in Chastain's introduction to the team, remained on as sponsor.[56] However, after DC Solar was raided by the FBI on December 18, 2018, the team lost the sponsorship and shut down in January.[57][58][59][60]

In January 2019, Chastain joined Niece Motorsports to drive the No. 45 Silverado part-time in the Truck Series, splitting the truck with Reid Wilson.[61] On January 31, Chastain announced he would return to the No. 4 JD Motorsports ride for 30 races, replacing Blake Koch, who stepped away to focus on business ventures. For the other three races of the schedule – Daytona in February, Chicagoland in June, and Texas in November – Chastain announced he would join Kaulig Racing, driving the organization's No. 10 entry.[62] In his first race with Niece, Chastain began the season with a third-place finish in the 2019 NextEra Energy 250.[63] At his first ever Daytona 500, Chastain scored his first career top-ten in the Cup Series despite starting 36th at the 2019 Daytona 500. During the spring of 2019, Chastain broke the all-time NASCAR record for most consecutive races run across all three national series to start a season, surpassing the mark of 22 set by Kyle Busch set in 2008.[64]

On May 10, 2019, Chastain won his first career NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series race in the 2019 Digital Ally 250 at Kansas Speedway.[65] He nearly spun out with 20 laps to go but saved the truck, later inheriting the lead from Stewart Friesen after he ran out of fuel.[66]

Personal lifeEdit

A native of Alva, Florida, Chastain was a watermelon farmer on his family's farm until he turned thirteen.[67] He is a graduate of Riverdale High School in Fort Myers.[68] Chastain attended Florida Gulf Coast University for a semester before he began racing in the Truck Series.[67]

While Chastain's father did race a bit as a hobby, Ross is the first generation of his family to race competitively. Ross started racing at age twelve after seeing his father hobby race and seeing other kids his age race.[1]

Motorsports career resultsEdit

NASCAREdit

(key) (Bold – Pole position awarded by qualifying time. Italics – Pole position earned by points standings or practice time. * – Most laps led.)

Monster Energy Cup SeriesEdit

Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series results
Year Team No. Make 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 MENCC Pts Ref
2017 Premium Motorsports 15 Chevy DAY ATL LVS PHO CAL MAR TEX BRI RCH TAL KAN CLT DOV
20
POC MCH SON DAY KEN NHA IND POC GLN MCH BRI DAR RCH CHI NHA DOV
38
CLT TAL KAN MAR TEX PHO HOM 54th 01 [69]
2018 DAY ATL
30
LVS
29
PHO
27
CAL
29
MAR
29
TEX
18
BRI
39
RCH
28
TAL
25
DOV
28
KAN
26
CLT
24
POC
28
MCH
26
SON CHI
30
DAY
21
KEN
28
NHA
25
POC
35
GLN
32
MCH
35
BRI
26
DAR
28
IND
26
LVS
20
RCH
33
DOV
37
TAL
24
KAN
39
MAR
29
TEX
32
PHO
24
HOM
33
58th 01 [70]
7 CLT
24
2019 15 DAY
10
ATL
31
LVS
33
PHO
27
CAL
28
MAR
34
TEX
29
BRI
29
RCH
30
TAL
26
DOV
30
KAN
31
CLT POC MCH SON CHI DAY KEN NHA POC GLN MCH BRI DAR IND LVS RCH CLT DOV TAL KAN MAR TEX PHO HOM -* 01* [71]
Daytona 500Edit
Year Team Manufacturer Start Finish
2019 Premium Motorsports Chevrolet 36 10

Xfinity SeriesEdit

NASCAR Xfinity Series results
Year Team No. Make 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 NXSC Pts Ref
2014 Viva Motorsports 55 Chevy DAY PHO LVS BRI CAL TEX DAR RCH TAL IOW CLT
18
DOV DAY
29
NHA CHI IND IOW GLN MOH BRI ATL RCH 96th1 01 [72]
Hattori Racing Enterprises 80 Toyota MCH
12
ROA KEN CHI
19
KEN
10
DOV KAN CLT
21
TEX PHO
TriStar Motorsports 10 Toyota HOM
14
2015 JD Motorsports 4 Chevy DAY
9
ATL
24
LVS
18
PHO
27
CAL
17
TEX
21
BRI
27
RCH
17
TAL
25
IOW
32
CLT
31
DOV
16
MCH
21
DAY
10
KEN
20
NHA
37
IND
22
IOW
10
GLN
17
MOH
19
BRI
17
DAR
10
RCH
15
CHI
16
KEN
18
DOV
37
CLT
24
KAN
14
TEX
16
PHO
19
HOM
19
15th 785 [73]
01 CHI
18
ROA
27
2016 4 DAY
22
ATL
28
LVS
16
PHO
24
CAL
19
TEX
21
BRI
22
RCH
18
TAL
16
DOV
20
CLT
17
POC
19
MCH
16
IOW
14
DAY
11
KEN
22
NHA
31
IND
21
IOW
18
GLN
14
MOH
14
BRI
32
ROA
33
DAR
29
RCH
24
CHI
39
KEN
19
DOV
12
CLT
21
KAN
13
TEX
21
PHO
20
HOM
22
16th 670 [74]
2017 DAY
16
ATL
25
LVS
25
PHO
22
CAL
37
TEX
23
BRI
31
RCH
38
TAL
19
CLT
15
DOV
21
POC
24
MCH
19
IOW
4
DAY
6
KEN
20
NHA
19
IND
16
IOW
18
GLN
19
MOH
15
BRI
15
ROA
13
DAR
14
RCH
28
CHI
22
KEN
21
DOV
12
CLT
14
KAN
17
TEX
19
PHO
19
HOM
17
13th 595 [75]
2018 DAY
9
ATL
16
LVS
18
PHO
19
CAL
10
TEX
28
BRI
9
RCH
18
TAL
34
DOV
16
CLT
26
POC
11
MCH
14
IOW
19
CHI
13
DAY
10
KEN
17
NHA
26
IOW
4
GLN
20
MOH
16
BRI
12
ROA
7
IND
12
CLT
12
DOV
13
KAN
25
TEX
11
PHO
15
HOM
16
10th 2184 [76]
Chip Ganassi Racing 42 Chevy DAR
25*
LVS
1*
RCH
2
2019 Kaulig Racing 10 Chevy DAY
13
TAL
30
CHI TEX -* -* [77]
JD Motorsports 4 Chevy ATL
14
LVS
7
PHO
17
CAL
18
TEX
16
BRI
33
RCH
11
DOV
12
CLT POC MCH IOW DAY KEN NHA IOW GLN MOH BRI ROA DAR IND LVS RCH CLT DOV KAN PHO HOM

Gander Outdoors Truck SeriesEdit

NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series results
Year Team No. Make 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 NGOTC Pts Ref
2011 Turn One Racing 66 Chevy DAY PHO DAR MAR NSH DOV CLT KAN TEX KEN IOW NSH IRP
10
POC MCH BRI
19
ATL CHI NHA KEN
22
LVS TAL MAR TEX
16
34th 126 [78]
Panhandle Motorsports 20 Toyota HOM
DNQ
RSS Racing 93 Chevy HOM
27
2012 SS-Green Light Racing 08 Toyota DAY
28
MAR
7
CAR
25
KAN
34
CLT
35
DOV
15
TEX
16
KEN
33
IOW
16
CHI
13
POC
10
MCH
18
BRI
3
ATL
20
IOW
11
KEN
28
LVS
25
TAL
34
MAR
23
TEX
31
HOM
10
17th 502 [79]
07 Chevy PHO
33
2013 Brad Keselowski Racing 19 Ford DAY
14
MAR
20
CAR KAN CLT
9
DOV
16
TEX
13
KEN IOW
13
ELD POC
5
MCH BRI MSP
7
IOW
2*
CHI LVS
14
TAL
3
MAR
14
TEX PHO
2
HOM
8
18th 484 [80]
2014 RBR Enterprises 92 Ford DAY
30
MAR
14
KAN CLT DOV TEX GTW KEN IOW ELD POC MCH BRI MSP CHI NHA LVS TAL MAR TEX PHO 45th 77 [81]
Win-Tron Racing 35 Toyota HOM
11
2015 Hattori Racing Enterprises 18 Toyota DAY ATL MAR KAN CLT DOV TEX GTW IOW KEN ELD POC MCH BRI MSP CHI
DNQ
NHA LVS TAL MAR TEX PHO HOM 112th 01 [82]
2016 Bolen Motorsports 66 Chevy DAY ATL MAR KAN DOV CLT TEX IOW GTW KEN ELD POC BRI MCH MSP CHI NHA LVS TAL
15
MAR TEX PHO HOM 95th 01 [83]
2017 DAY
30
ATL
10
MAR
7
KAN
18
CLT
19
DOV
15
TEX GTW IOW KEN
13
ELD POC MCH BRI MSP CHI NHA LVS TAL MAR TEX PHO HOM 80th 01 [84]
2018 Beaver Motorsports 50 Chevy DAY ATL LVS MAR DOV KAN CLT TEX IOW
30
GTW
29
96th 01 [85]
Premium Motorsports 15 Chevy CHI
26
KEN ELD POC MCH LVS
7
TAL MAR
Niece Motorsports 38 Chevy BRI
12
MSP TEX
26
PHO HOM
16
2019 45 DAY
3
ATL
6
LVS
10
MAR
4
TEX
7
DOV
10
KAN
1
CLT
10
TEX IOW GTW CHI KEN POC ELD MCH BRI MSP LVS TAL MAR PHO HOM -* 01* [86]

K&N Pro Series EastEdit

NASCAR K&N Pro Series East results
Year Team No. Make 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 NKNPSEC Pts Ref
2014 Hattori Racing Enterprises 1 Toyota NSM DAY BRI GRE RCH IOW BGS FFL LGY NHA COL
6
IOW
17
GLN VIR GRE DOV 39th 66 [87]

* Season still in progress
1 not eligible for series points

ReferencesEdit

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External linksEdit