Eddie Sharp Racing Continues to Show Strength in Driver Development
Team Notches Its First UARA Win with Rookie Brandon Jones
Team Owner Eddie Sharp has been known for helping young drivers develop into superstars. In fact, that's how most of his drivers end up at Eddie Sharp Racing (ESR). Based in a 45,000-square-foot facility in the small town of Denver, N.C., many drivers have come to ESR to win races, championship titles and rookie of the year honors. Drivers like Michael McDowell and Scott Speed used ESR to help catapult their careers to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series ranks. Current ESR competitor Justin Lofton teamed with Sharp to win the Automobile Racing Club of America (ARCA) Racing Series Championship in 2009, and has since gone on to win at the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) level in the No. 6 Chevrolet for ESR. With a United Auto Racing Association (UARA) win at Concord (N.C.) Speedway on Saturday night, August 4, 15-year-old Brandon Jones became the next development driver to find success under Sharp's guidance.
"I've always enjoyed working with young drivers," commented Sharp. "To be able to work with someone just as they're starting their career and to move up through the ranks with them is something that I find very rewarding. Bringing this team together and knowing how hard they all work adds to the excitement of nights like last Saturday. I've been able to watch guys like Lofton get their first win in the lower stock car divisions and then move up to the NASCAR level and find success there. To be a part of Brandon Jones' first win in a regional touring series is really special and we hope to achieve a lot more success together."
In just his 10th race in UARA-STARS competition, rookie Brandon Jones brought home the win in the City Chevrolet 150 at Concord Speedway on Saturday, August 4. Jones qualified in the fifth position and raced inside the top 10 all night. As the laps wound down and the action heated up on the short half-mile track, Jones was able to keep his nose clean and race through the field. Crossing the finish line in the second position, Jones was declared the race winner just a few hours later when the No. 12 car failed post-race technical inspection. It was the first UARA win of Jones' career, and the first victory for ESR's late model program in the 2012 season.
"It's been really great to work with Eddie Sharp and the whole ESR team," commented Jones. "To already have a win at this level and at this point in my career is awesome. Everyone has been very helpful all year in helping me learn new tracks and cars. I've had Eddie up on the spotter's stand, Cale [Gale, driver of the No. 33 Rheem Chevrolet for ESR in the NCWTS] helping work on the car and spotting for me, veteran late model guys like Lee McCall and Davin Scites working on the cars; it's been really cool. I look forward to getting out there week after week and can't wait to get back in victory lane again soon."
The ESR late model program will continue its season at Tri-County (N.C.) Motor Speedway this Friday night, August 10, as Brandon Jones and Will Gallaher take on the competition in the UARA-STARS Series.
About Eddie Sharp Racing
Eddie Sharp Racing (ESR) (TeamESR.com) is a championship winning racing team housed in a 45,000 square-foot facility in Denver, N.C. After getting its start in the Automobile Racing Club of America (ARCA) Racing Series, ESR has accumulated upwards of 20 race wins, the 2009 ARCA Racing Series Championship, and countless top-five and top-10 finishes in just five years of competition. By 2010, ESR began to make the transition into the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) with a partial schedule before racing in the series full-time in 2011. By 2012, the team expanded to be a multi-truck team and secured its first victory in just the team's 35th NCWTS race. Additionally, ESR continues to build its driver development program fielding various drivers in the ARCA Racing Series, the United Auto Racing Association (UARA) STARS Series and other late model events across the southeast.