Spade Racing 2021 Season Previews: Three Series, Three Categories (well, nine total) PART 3: Trucks

Now more than ever there’s a pretty solid caste system in Nascar—Championship Contenders, Race Win Contenders, and Independents.  Who fits in where?  Who will be making the 2021 Playoffs?  And will there be any races anywhere that Timmy Hill doesn’t compete in?  That’s what this preview is for!

Check out the three categories of Truck Series competitors, and see where YOUR favorite driver has wound up! (note: if you have more than one favorite Truck Series driver, please consider getting some more fresh air.)

Drivers listed in order of their expected finishing order—part-time drivers not listed.

WILY VETERAN TIER—drivers with a few years or more under their belts

#98 Grant Enfinger (106 National Series Starts)  Last year was a breakout year for Enfinger, posting four wins and making the final round of the playoffs.  But at age 35, he only has 10-15 years—maybe 18 if he’s lucky—to win a championship.

#13 Johnny Sauter (581 National Series Starts)  You read that right—over 500 starts in Cup, Xfinity, and Trucks for Sauter over the years.  Feel old yet?  Well if you don’t try this on for size—some day, we’re ALL gonna see Chase Elliott as a “wily veteran driver”.

#16 Austin Hill (107 National Series Starts)  With six wins in the past two seasons who says you can’t compete as a single car/truck team?  Ok, the past 25 years, but that’s all!

#45 Brett Moffitt (158 National Series Starts)  Brett attempts both the Xfinity and Truck Series full-time schedules.  And you can be sure that if there’s a scheduling conflict, Parker Kligerman will be there to substitute.

#88 Matt Crafton (484 National Series Starts)  With 476 of those starts coming in the Truck Series, Matt Crafton in the 88 ThorSport truck’s been about as sure a thing as there’s been in Nascar.  Well, besides that one year he ran for Kevin Harvick then inexplicably got replaced by Ron Hornaday Jr.

#52 Stewart Friesen (93 National Series Starts)  Friesen hopes to rebound from a disappointing year in which he failed to win and skipped a Truck Series race for a local short-track event.  Sure he won, but that's like skipping a Division 1 college football game to dominate a seven-on-seven flag football game.

#99 Ben Rhodes (129 National Series Starts)  While he hasn’t lit the world on fire, he has family sponsorship so just get used to him being a Truck Series driver.  Sorry Tyler Dippel, Todd Gilliland, Christian Eckes, and Josh Bilicki.

#38 Todd Gilliland (71 National Series Starts)  Todd has officially crossed-over from Young Gun to Wily Veteran.  I base that decision on...well, not much, but believe me, its a compliment.

#25 Timothy Peters (257 National Series Starts)  An old Truck Series standby returns to full-time competition with a brand-new team, the awkwardly-named Rackley WAR.  Kinda odd when your team already sounds like its been through a few mergers before its run a race.

#40 Ryan Truex (155 National Series Starts)  Despite failing to post a win in 150+ starts, Truex gets a shot in one of the series’ most-improving teams.  Nice to see the brother of a Cup Series champion get a fair shake once in a while, huh?

#3 Jordan Anderson (137 National Series Starts)  Jordan continues to get more publicity than some Cup drivers despite running mid-pack for his own independent team.  Just goes to show you that when you want to seem big as a giant when you’re 4’8’’, hire a PR agent.

#20 Spencer Boyd (91 National Series Starts)  Boyd matched his car number for his points finish last year.  Hey Spencer—#1 IS available, just sayin.

#22 Austin Wayne Self (107 National Series Starts)  The Man With a Serial Killer Name left Niece Motorsports to return to his own family operation.  Boy, that seems kinda regretful in retrospect.

#04 Cory Roper (27 National Series Starts)  While Cory hasn't made that many starts in Nascar his age of 43 puts him squarely in the "veteran" group.  Hopefully this year he can find enough funding to run a full schedule...and find the missing "E" for his first name.

YOUNG GUN TIER—drivers just starting out in Nascar.

#21 Zane Smith (34 National Series Starts)  Smith had a solid first year in the Trucks, and is Spade Racing’s odds-on favorite to win the 2021 championship.  By typing that, anyone who places that bet is legally bound to give me 10% of their winnings.

#2 Sheldon Creed (55 National Series Starts)  A champion at age 23, Creed returns to the series’ top team where the only real competition is from his teammates.  Kinda like being in sales.

#23 Chase Purdy (R) (9 National Series Starts)  Purdy gets a plum full-season ride with GMS Racing for his rookie campaign.  By the way that’s what the (R) means, not “Relegated”, “Restart-addled” or “Rodney Combs Fanclub Member”.

#17 Halie Deegan (R) (1 National Series Start)  Deegan seems to be the total package—legit driving talent, a winning pedigree, and sponsor appeal.  While that’s led to a Ford development deal AND a DGR Truck Series ride, its also led to hundreds of creepy old man fans.  Yeesh.

#42 Carson Hocevar (9 National Series Starts)  Carson’s overcome a lot on his way to a full-time Niece Motorsports ride.  No, not coming up through Nascar in the middle of a pandemic—dealing with having a last name that spellcheck constantly autocorrects to “However”.

#18 Chandler Smith (R) (16 National Series Starts)  Smith finished strong last year with five top-fives in his last six starts.  A Rookie of the Year title could mean more exposure…even if that exposure is just answering the same damn media questions every weekend about his team owner Kyle Busch.

#26 Tyler Ankrum (45 National Series Starts)  One year after a cinderella playoff berth Ankrum had a solid if not spectacular sophomore season.  Time will tell if he pours it on 2021 to establish himself as a future talent, or if he winds up running for second-rate equipment with fake-sounding sponsors like “Meltdown Ice Cream”, “NRG Caffeine Injections”, or “Singer Sewing Machines”.

#19 Derek Kraus (28 National Series Starts)  Kraus showed flashes of brilliance last year, but flashes don’t get you much in this world.  Well, besides 40 hours community service.

#11 Spencer Davis (23 National Series Starts)  Spencer Davis will be attempting to run his first-ever full-time Truck Series schedule with his own team.  I'm guessing he's so glad he made it, so glad he made it...

#12 Tate Fogelman (26 National Series Starts)  Fogelman returns for his sophomore effort while simultaneously going for his business degree in college.  A word of advice, Tate--take one statistics course and then RUN!

#02 Kris Wright (R) (1 National Series Start)  Wright, the latest young gun driver for Young's Motorsports, has a lot in common with Dale Jarrett.  Well, by "a lot" I mean they're both decent amateur golfers.

#41 Dawson Cram (17 National Series Starts)  This family run operation is planning on attempting the full season.  So that should net them at least one cloying pre-race feature on FS1.


#4 John Hunter Nemechek (192 National Series Starts)  Why did JHN leave a steady if not spectacular Front Row Motorsports ride to return to the Truck Series?  We may never know, but he’s in a tier all his own now.

Spade Racing 2021 Season Previews: Three Series, Three Categories (well, nine total) PART 2: Xfinity

Now more than ever there’s a pretty solid caste system in Nascar—Championship Contenders, Race Win Contenders, and Independents.  Who fits in where?  Who will be making the 2021 Playoffs?  And will there be any races anywhere that Timmy Hill doesn’t compete in?  That’s what this preview is for!

Check out the three tiers of Xfinity Competition—Cup Affiliates, Strong Independents, and Backmarkers—and figure out if this is FINALLY the last year of Kyle Busch in the series.

Teams listed in order of overall “power rankings”, then drivers listed in order of expected finish within them, full time then part time.  *—new driver

TIER 1—Cup Affiliated Teams: These teams are either owned by a Cup team or operate in close tandem with one.

1. JOE GIBBS RACING (20 Harrison Burton, 18 *Daniel Hemric, 19 Brandon Jones, 54 Kyle Busch et al).  With Chase Briscoe promoted to Cup this year could see JGR be an all-conquering force in the Xfinity Series.  And with a maturing Harrison Burton, two solid Xfinity regulars, and the always dangerous Rowdy, there’s not much of a reason to expect them not to be.  Gulp.  FUN FACT—Kyle Busch said that if he wins 100 Xfinity Series races on his career (he’s at 97 now), he’ll retire permanently from the series.  So for the first time ever, we could ALL be rooting for Rowdy.

2. TEAM PENSKE (22 Austin Cindric).  While Cindric holds the best chance of competing with the Gibbs juggernaut, you gotta figure that with a 2022 Cup ride all but guaranteed, he’ll be spending most of 2021 testing the Next Gen Cup car.  Then again, too much testing COULD lead to unforeseen problems like, uh, well, hand cramping?  FUN FACT—Austin’s scheduled to run a few Cup races for seasoning this year.  So we’ll all pretend that the Wood Bros. car isn’t just the fourth Penske entry those weekends.

3. JR MOTORSPORTS (7 Justin Allgaier, 9 Noah Gragson, 1 Michael Annett, 8 Sam Mayer, Josh Berry, and Dale Earnhardt Jr.).  The Hendrick Motorsports-JR Motorsports partnership (they co-own the team) has proven fruitful, and all three full-time drivers return minus any change—even sponsorship is steady.  Much better than those days where it seemed like about a dozen guys ran that Navy car, huh?  FUN FACT—the 8 car features all three aspects of the Nascar Developmental System—a young inexperienced teenager (Sam Mayer), a more-seasoned late-model pro (Josh Berry), and an unknown with virtually zero fanbase (Dale Earnhardt Jr.).

4. KAULIG RACING (11 Justin Haley, 10 *Jeb Burton 16 AJ Allmendinger).  Kaulig Racing has made them most of its solid affiliation with RCR (they’re based on the RCR campus).  With Ross Chastain getting the #42 Cup ride, and Justin Haley a prime candidate for the #1 Cup ride, who knew that an RCR feeder team would feed to Chip Ganassi Racing?  FUN FACT—Chastain is expected to return for some races, presumably in a fourth car or, if necessary, as a substitute.  Either way the most exciting part of any Kaulig race win will still be seeing if it passes post-race inspection.

5. STEWART-HAAS RACING with BIAGI DENBESTE (98 * Riley Herbst).  The 98 was a dominant force in 2020 with Chase Briscoe, who got promoted up to Cup.  Now there’s a new driver with new sponsorship who’s going to shake things up—hopefully more in the metaphorical sense than smashing the car into the wall.  FUN FACT—Riley Herbst is the only driver for whom being called “Terrible” is a compliment.

6. RICHARD CHILDRESS RACING (2 Myatt Snyder, 21—???).  RCR scales back to a full-time schedule for one car alone in 2021.  And with Myatt being the son of Marty Snider, technically this continues the streak of RCR only hiring legacy kids.  FUN FACT—Slayer sponsoring a car is bad, but TaxSlayer is ok.  Huh.

TIER 2—Somewhat competitive teams with limited resources.

7. OUR MOTORSPORTS (02 Brett Moffitt, 03 various drivers).  Brand-new last year, this little outfit came out of nowhere to run competitively almost every week.  Having Brett Moffitt full-time this year could see them take a step forward in the car number made famous by such luminaries as Hermie Sadler, young Mark Martin, and original hair Ryan Newman.  FUN FACT—The “Our” in Our Motorsports refers to team owner Chris Our, not to be confused with pirate-themed race team Arr Motorsports.

Tier 2.5--Could post
a few top-tens, could
leave for another series
after three races, could be
banned for life
(26 Santino Ferrucci)

8. RSS MOTORSPORTS (39 Ryan Sieg, 38 ?, 93 ?).  Nascar’s Official Underdog continues to put up solid results on a shoestring budget.  A reminder that “shoestring budget” means spending a very minimal amount, NOT paying for things with old shoestrings.  I learned THAT the hard way.  FUN FACT—this team receives engines and chassis from RCR, but doesn’t get any tuning or test track info with them.  Its like buying an expensive Lego set on deal because it doesn’t come with an instruction manual.

9. JEREMY CLEMENTS RACING (51 Jeremy Clements).  This long-running single-car team will need new sponsorship after losing Repairable Vehicles.  Who knows what generic fake-sounding company will take their place?  Associated Services?  The Company Company?  FUN FACT—JCR has competed in 339 Xfinity Series races going into this season with one race win.  That level of success is comparable to me asking girls out on dates.

10. BRANDONBILT MOTORSPORTS (68 Brandon Brown).  Its unknown if this team will run its “B-team” car the #86 next year, although you can be sure that any of this team’s cars will have a cartoon bird on the side.  FUN FACT—Making the playoffs is a major accomplishment for this team.  Next up on the goals hierarchy is “making the playoffs and not having it be a surprise”.

11. JDM w/GARY KELLER (15 Colby Howard, 0 Jeffrey Earnhardt, 4 *Landon Cassill, 6 Ryan Vargas).  Always good for a longshot drive to a Playoff berth, JD Motorsports returns with what I can only assume will be really red paint schemes.  FUN FACT—Now that Flex Seal doesn’t seem to be involved with the team, how will they repair the boats they sawed in half?

12. SS-GREEN LIGHT RACING (08 Joe Graf Jr., 07 ???).  While this small, independent team has yet to visit victory lane in the Xfinity Series, their team owner Bobby Dotter was cool with me when I met him, so there’s that.  FUN FACT—time will tell if Ray Black Jr. runs any races for them this year, allowing Michael Waltrip to make plenty of diving puns.

13. DGM RACING (92 Josh Williams, 90 ???, 36 Alex Labbe).  The Canadian Invasion has been, well, pretty tame, as this team continues to show up and occasionally contend.  Polite and unassuming—just like a Canadian, eh?  FUN FACT—Alex Labbe’s pre-race Facebook Live feeds are my weekly reminder that I didn’t learn anything in three years of high school French.

14. HATTORI RACING ENTERPRISES (61 Austin Hill, ???).  HRE is really the only non-JGR Toyota team to even threaten for top-tens, but their lack of a full-time program has them at the bottom of Tier 2.  FUN FACT—nobody other than me cares about where HRE ranks on this website.

TIER 3—Typically just trying to survive.

15. MARTINS MOTORSPORTS (44 Tommy Joe Martins)

16. B.J. MCLEOD MOTORSPORTS (5 Matt Mills, 78 *Jesse Little, 99 various drivers)

17. MBM RACING (49 ???, 66 ???)

18. JIMMY MEANS RACING (52 *Gray Gaulding)

19. RICK WARE RACING (17 ???, ? ???)

20. MIKE HARMON RACING (47 Kyle Weatherman, 74 Bayley Currey)

So if we’re being honest, none of these teams have a shot to win outside of a plate track or a rainy road course with a ringer.  But if we’re NOT being honest, all of these teams represent the spirit of racing in Nascar, real throwbacks to the early days of the sport, made up of men trying their best just to make an impact.  FUN FACT—each of these teams has a Facebook page with at least one frequent commenter who seems determined to point out that they do, in fact, suck.

Spade Racing 2021 Season Previews: Three Series, Three Categories (well, nine total) PART 1: Cup

Now more than ever there’s a pretty solid caste system in Nascar—Championship Contenders, Race Win Contenders, and Independents.  Who fits in where?  Who will be making the 2021 Playoffs?  And will there be any races anywhere that Timmy Hill doesn’t compete in?  That’s what this preview is for!

Read further to see who will outperform their equipment, who will disappoint, and what team will constantly get lapped every week (hint: rhymes with “Nick Bare”).


Drivers listed in predicted order of regular season points finish—teams expected to run the full-time schedule (or capable of doing so) only.

Ranking. Car #—Driver (Team—biggest sponsor/sponsors)

TIER ONE—Championship Contenders

1. 11—Denny Hamlin (Joe Gibbs Racing—FedEx)  CHANGES: None.  PREDICTION: A bunch of wins and a regular season title, but at this point you gotta figure Denny just wants to skip the regular season and redeem himself in the Playoffs.  Well, that and eliminate pit road speeding penalties.

Team chart--click to enlarge

2. 18—Kyle Busch (JGR—M&M’s/Interstate)  CHANGES: New crew chief.  PREDICTION: The bounce back year of all bounce backs as Kyle Busch earns a new nickname—The Rubber Band Man (copyright 2021 Moxoc Media all rights reserved).

3. 4—Kevin Harvick (Stewart-Haas Racing—Mobil 1/Busch)  CHANGES: None.  PREDICTION: Harvick has revenge on his mind in 2021 for last season’s disappointing finish.  This is shaping up to be a good revenge story, like Taken, and not a bad revenge story, like anything with Charles Bronson.

4. 22—Joey Logano (Team Penske—Shell/Pennzoil)  CHANGES: None.  PREDICTION: One of the steadiest contenders over the past few years, Joey is the kind of guy broadcasters call “a good little driver”, but I will be respectful and call him “a good driver of average size for his profession”.

5. 5—Kyle Larson (Hendrick Motorsports—???)  CHANGES: New driver, new sponsors, new car number (this was the 88 team).  PREDICTION: Look for Kyle Larson to give Chase Elliott a run for his money as the top HMS/Chevy driver thanks to a car that’s changed very little.  As for sponsorship, be prepared to see lots of, Hendrick Chevrolet, and Rick Hendrick’s Lemonade Stand.

6. 2—Brad Keselowski (Penske—Discount Tire)  CHANGES: None.  PREDICTION: Look for BradK to perform in a contract year.  While it should get him a nice extension (or a good deal with another team), hopefully his boss won’t use his grace under pressure as an excuse to give him constant one-year deals.

7. 19—Martin Truex Jr. (JGR—Bass Pro Shops/Auto-Owners)  CHANGES: None.  PREDICTION: Truex was a little under-the-radar in 2020.  Expect a similar 2.5 win regular season in 2021 (the half coming from fuel mileage, a plate track, or taking advantage of a JTG-D car spinning out).

8. 9—Chase Elliott (HMS—NAPA)  CHANGES: None.  PREDICTION: Chase might not light up the track in the regular season, but he’s money in the playoffs.  Well, unless he has two out of three below-average races, because that’s the system we have.

9. 3—Austin Dillon (Richard Childress Racing—Dow)  CHANGES: None.  PREDICTION: RCR continues its comeback story with some well-timed strategy calls for Austin Dillon.  Because last time I checked, a win on pit strategy still counted as a win.

10. 1—Kurt Busch (Chip Ganassi Racing—Monster)  CHANGES: None.  PREDICTION: Kurt keeps overachieving in what could be his final full season.  Kurt Busch is old enough to be retiring—let that sink in for one depressing minute.

11. 12—Ryan Blaney (Penske—the usual gang of sponsors)  CHANGES: None.  PREDICTION: Yep, its looking like another regular season of Penske, Gibbs, and Kevin Harvick dominance.  But this time, Blaney joins in the fun (note: fun not guaranteed your level of glee may vary).

12. 48—Alex Bowman (HMS—Ally)  CHANGES: New driver and crew chief.  PREDICTION: The steady improvement of HMS paired with a maturing Alex Bowman means he could be a trendy dark horse pick for the Cup Championship.  Good for him—better than being known as “that guy who replaced Dale Jr.”, “that guy who replaced Jimmie Johnson”, or “that guy who got splashed by Bubba Wallace”.

TIER TWO—Race Win Contenders

13. 10—Aric Almirola (SHR—Smithfield)  CHANGES: None.  PREDICTION: SHR has seemed a little bit like “Happy Harvick and The Rest” for the past few years, but if AA doesn’t turn it around (and I think he will), he may find himself forced to fall back on his other skill set—arguing with Brian Scott.

14. 20—Christopher Bell (JGR—Rheem/Stanley)  CHANGES: New driver, new crew chief.  PREDICTION: Its put up or shut up time for C.Bell, but his career has shown his consistent ability to “put up” when needed.  Plus nobody likes a driver who’s always quiet.

15. 41—Cole Custer (SHR—Haas Automation)  CHANGES: None.  PREDICTION: Could there be a sophomore slump?  Yes.  Could Cole “build the notebook” and win again?  Yes.  Could the Haas F1 team avoid finishing in last place?  No.

16. 24—William Byron (HMS—Axalta/Liberty U)  CHANGES: New crew chief.  PREDICTION: Even with Chad Knaus getting promoted expect William Byron to “point” his way into the playoffs, although it’ll be interesting to see if Chad tells any of his engineers that “if we win, I’m gonna need you to wreck your laptop”.

17. 21—Matt DiBenedetto (Penske—Menards/Motorcraft)  CHANGES: Austin Cindric to get this ride in 2022.  PREDICTION: You can see it now—post-race of the last regular season race.  Matty D has missed the playoffs by a single point.  He’s tearing up, openly questioning what the future holds for him.  …and he probably winds up at Front Row or something.

18. 6—Ryan Newman (Roush Fenway Racing—Oscar Mayer/Wyndam)  CHANGES: None.  PREDICTION: Let’s be honest—Newman could blow an engine in the Duels, get caught speeding on pit road in the 500, and come home the last car running and it would STILL be preferable to how the opening of his 2020 went.

19. 42—Ross Chastain (Ganassi—Credit One)  CHANGES: New driver.  PREDICTION: Chastain’s like he’s a rookie.  But he’s really not.  Yet, a tough year awaits him.  …Garth, that was a haiku!

20. 14—Chase Briscoe (R) (SHR—High Point/Haas Automation)  CHANGES: New driver, new lead sponsor.  PREDICTION: Chase is all but guaranteed the 2021 Cup Rookie of the Year award, putting him in such rarified air as Johnny Benson and Stephen Leicht.  So there’s that.

21. 17—Chris Buescher (RHR—Fastenal/FifthThird)  CHANGES: None.  Is it the driver or the car?  Its hard to tell, but unless he wins a plate race, he’ll likely miss the playoffs by a lot.  What’s that?  Oh, fine—TAPERED SPACER RACE.

22. 8—Tyler Reddick (RCR—Caterpillar)  CHANGES: None.  PREDICTION: If RCR can’t find a way to run two Cup teams consistency, Reddick will likely be the odd-man out.  This is referred to as “being Skinnered”.

23. 23—Bubba Wallace (23XI—Doordash/Dr Pepper)  CHANGES: Completely new team.  PREDICTION: Building a team from the ground up is a difficult task, so 2021 will likely be a year of sussing out who can put up with outsized pressure, constant scrutiny, and having to eat Domino’s on every single late night.

24. 47—Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (JTG-Daugherty—Kroger/Clicklist)  CHANGES: None.  PREDICTION: Being this generation’s Todd Bodine isn’t much to write home about.  Then again, most people don’t write home anymore.

TIER THREE—Independents

25. 43—Erik Jones (RPM—CashApp/USAF)  CHANGES: New driver, new sponsorship.  PREDICTION: Some Richard Petty fans are happy that the team is going the “safe route” with a proven, non-controversial driver.  To that end the team will likely improve somewhat from 2020, but nobody else will care.

26. 34—Michael McDowell (Front Row—Love’s)  CHANGES: None.  PREDICTION: 2020 was a step-up for the longtime small-time operation.  But no matter what happens this year, they can always remember one thing—they have the series’ tallest driver.

27. 38—Dale Allen (Front Row—Fox Point/Christina’s Brandy)  CHANGES: New driver and sponsors.  PREDICTION: John Hunter Nemechek gets dislodged for an Xfinity Series driver with no wins just because he has solid sponsorship?  Hard to believe…because I just made all of that up.

27. 38—Anthony Alfredo (R) (Front Row—???, MDS)  CHANGES: New driver.  PREDICTION: People want to know why a driver with only part-time Xfinity experience is now in a Cup ride.  Including me.

28. 99—Daniel Suarez (Trackhouse—???) CHANGES: Completely new team.  PREDICTION: Its going to be a tough road ahead for Nascar’s OTHER new team, but there is hope.  Hope that they use the theme to Nickelodeon’s Roundhouse for driver intros, but hope nonetheless.

29. 37—Ryan Preece (JTG-D—Kroger/vendor partners)  CHANGES: None.  PREDICTION: Ryan Preece is looking more and more like the modern version of David Gilliland—and he doesn’t even get a cool M&M’s car out of it.

30. 7—Corey LaJoie (Spire—???)  CHANGES: New driver, new team.  PREDICTION: By getting in on the (relative) ground floor of a newish team, Corey could be the next Martin Truex Jr.  Or he could be the next Ty Dillon.

31. 77—??? (Spire—???)  CHANGES: New driver(s).  PREDICTION: Who knows what will happen here, but we can be pretty confident that somehow Justin Haley will randomly lead a race at Daytona or Talladega.

32-35.  15, 51, 52, 53 (RWR—???)  CHANGES: a-plenty.  PREDICTIONS: As usual not much is known about the four Rick Ware Racing entries.  And as usual, other than the occasional late-race caution, not much of an impact is expected.

36. 96—??? (Gaunt Bros.—???)  CHANGES: new driver, may run part-time.  PREDICTIONS: The Gaunt Bros. are a lot like the Wood Bros.  That is, if you look at the Wood Bros. about 15 years ago when they were running with Ken Schrader.

37. 78—BJ McLeod (Live Fast—Keen)  CHANGES: New team.  PREDICTIONS: Not much is known about this team that purchased the GoFas charter will run, but rest assured that their team leader BJ McLeod will has the sport’s slickest hair.

38. 00—Quin Hoff (StarCom—???)  CHANGES: New sponsors.  PREDICTIONS: Quin’s got nowhere to go but up.  Unfortunately even THAT looks like a difficult step to take.

39. 49/66—Timmy Hill (MBM—???)  CHANGES: New sponsors.  PREDICTIONS: Timmy ran the most races amongst the three national touring series in 2020.  There—that’s a thing you know now.

52 Pickup Racing Welcomes DC Solar as Multi-Race Sponsor

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (Boogertown, North Carolina)

52 Pickup Racing is proud to announce that DC Solar, an innovative portable solar generation company, has joined the team as a co-primary sponsor for several 2021 NASCAR Cup Series races.

“Here at 52 Pickup Racing, we just keep getting stronger”, said team co-owner Oscar Estrada, one of the fifty-two investors in the new race team.  “With a solid, respectable company like DC Solar on board, it shows that we mean business.  And that business is all about sound financial planning.”

DC Solar, based out of California, reenters the sport after a two-year-old sojourn away due to unknown reasons.  Previously, DC Solar had been a primary sponsor of several Chip Ganassi Racing-affiliated teams, as well sponsoring several races themselves.

“This shows just how forward-focused this race team really is”, said T.B. Dee, driver of the forthcoming DC Solar/Monday Cigarettes race car.  “I did some quick research on DC Solar and saw plenty of search listings online.  And while I didn’t really have time to read through them, you know what they say—there’s no such thing as bad publicity.”

The exact races DC Solar will be on the car will be announced at a later date.

QUOTES: “Its great to be associated with such an illustrious company, I just wish I could meet the team owners.” —T.B. Dee, driver of the 52 Pickup Racing Monday Cigarettes race car.

“I’m going to cash the sponsorship check tomorrow—that should give us just enough money to finally finish the flooring of our race shop.” —Oscar Estrada, co-owner of 52 Pickup Racing.

ABOUT 52 PICKUP RACING: 52 Pickup Racing is NASCAR Cup’s newest race team.  Based out of Boogertown North Carolina, the team employs up-and-coming driver T.B. Dee and is looking for responsible teens looking to kickstart their careers in motorsports—apply for an internship today through the Boogertown Community College Career Center!

For more information please visit the 52 Pickup Racing website at

For all media inquiries please contact Moxoc Media at moxoc(at)

Coming soon—hero cards!

Spade Racing 2021 Season Previews Preview: The New Normal, but in a Good Way!

Official 2021 paint scheme--click to enlarge

2021 Schedule Matrix--click to enlarge
The Daytona 500 is about a month away, and you know what that means—Jeff Gordon gritting his teeth through rehearsals with Clint Bowyer!  But here at Spade Racing we have something even better—a preview of what you can expect to see this season:

—FOUR articles a week during race weeks.  That’s up from the previous three, so you’re getting 33.3% more content at no additional charge!

—Season-long coverage of my new side-hustle, doing PR for 52 Pickup Racing.  Look on Monday afternoon for the latest news from Nascar’s Newest Race Team.  And be sure to check out for additional team info and how to get your official Hero Card (seriously!).

—2021 Season Previews will begin next week, so be sure to save them for later this year when you can throw my inaccurate predictions back in my face.  For fun!

—Uncle Max WILL return for his latest challenge, to be revealed Daytona Speedweek.

--And be sure to follow on Facebook and Twitter for more updates throughout 2021!

So sit back, relax, and remember that even if the entire world falls apart around us—again—Spade Racing will be here through the end of the year.  Unless I get arrested for stalking Timmy Hill but if I do it was a total frame-up anyways!!!

2020 Panini Nascar Chronicles Cards Unboxing PACK 2 of 24

Panini comes out every year with a “super premium” series of Nascar cards, chock full of memorabilia pieces, autographs, and rookie cards.  This year its the Chronicles Series.  Join me as we unbox, unwrap, and unpack six “Blaster Boxes” worth of cards!

PACK 2—Ty, The Sky, and a Monochrome Guy

FIRST THING’S FIRST: In addition to Ty Dillon simultaneously doing a fantastic and terrible job of walking, AND Joey Logano appearing like he ran out of color ink, we see a LOT of glare in Martin Truex Jr.’s card.  These cards are so high-gloss that they tend to reflect whatever is above them—the sky, lighting, or a weirdo taking pictures of cards for some bizarre reason.

TO THE BACK: Kurt says that winning the Daytona 500 is “parallel to winning a championship”.  Far be it from me to question a guy who’s won both, but does anyone really consider Derrike Cope or Trevor Bayne to be champions, other than in the mustache and coffee departments, respectively?

WHAT WERE THEY THINKING: “If they put a silly crown behind my head when they put this picture on my card I’m gonna fill their yards with kudzu”.

FINAL SCORE: 5 lug nuts out of 10.

52 Pickup Racing Welcomes Arrival of New “Upcycled” Equipment

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (Boogertown, North Carolina)

As 52 Pickup Racing is a brand-new race team in the NASCAR Cup Series, everything is brand new, from the driver to the cars to the race shop nearing completion as soon as the roofer gets back to them.  But in today’s sustainability-concerned world, 52 Pickup Racing took things to the next level, “upcycling” a number of key parts from a dumpster located outside of the Hendrick Motorsports headquarters.

“There’s some really good stuff here—look, these lug nuts are practically good as new”, said Reeve McKay, one of the fifty-two co-owners of 52 Pickup Racing.  “And over here, I mean, look at all these Kasey Kahne t-shirts—these’ll go great for crew member undershirts!”

Driver T.B. Dee echoed ownership’s concern for maintaining a positive impact on the local environment.

“We’re all concerned about the future of the planet, and making sure that ‘gently-used’ race car parts aren’t winding up in the landfills of North Carolina”, Dee said while trying on an old Casey Mears firesuit.  “And look—we can undo the embroidery on this thing, cinch it up a little in the middle, and I got myself a uniform!”

The team is preparing for the 2021 NASCAR Cup season, but also preparing their environmental impact for years to come.

“We want to use whatever we can to minimize the sport’s detriment to the environment”, McKay said while sorting through a pile of old shocks.  “And if anyone has any old parts that are just lying around, feel free to drop them off in the big box outside our race shop.  Just don’t come in, we haven’t got our occupancy license yet.”

QUOTES: “Its not just about what we do today, its about what we leave for the fu—ooh, look—Dale Jr. raced sheet metal!” —T.B. Dee, driver of the 52 Pickup Racing Monday Cigarettes race car.

“Careful with that sheet metal there, T.B.—I know a guy who can get us big money on eBay!” —Reeve McKay, co-owner of 52 Pickup Racing.

ABOUT 52 PICKUP RACING: 52 Pickup Racing is NASCAR Cup’s newest race team.  Based out of Boogertown North Carolina, the team employs up-and-coming driver T.B. Dee and is now in possession of an old Farmers Insurance-branded “war wagon”.

For more information please visit the 52 Pickup Racing website at

For all media inquiries please contact Moxoc Media at moxoc(at)

Coming Soon—hero cards!

2020 Panini Nascar Chronicles Cards Unboxing PACK 1 of 24

Panini comes out every year with a “super premium” series of Nascar cards, chock full of memorabilia pieces, autographs, and rookie cards.  This year its the Chronicles Series.  Join me as we unbox, unwrap, and unpack six “Blaster Boxes” worth of cards!

PACK 1—Deegan, Larson—wait, Larson?

FIRST THING’S FIRST: Well, lets get this out of the way—there’s as long lead-time on cards, so that means that Kyle Larson is still included (twice here) despite having been ostracized from the sport in the Spring.  Ignoring that, you can tell these cards are premium-quality—high-gloss, silver and gold embossing, and made up almost entirely of subsets.  Who needs base cards when you can have “Ascension”?

TO THE BACK: Oh, he was “primed” for more Cup Series checkered flags, but much like a water pump that’s been primed, Larson wound up blowing up the pump, then scattering the remains at sea.

WHAT WERE THEY THINKING: “If I have to hear David Gilliland tell me ONE MORE TIME about his Xfinity Series win I’m going to scream”.  Oh God, here he comes—better play it nice.

FINAL SCORE: 2 stage points out of 10.

52 Pickup Racing Presents: Ask The Driver

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (Boogertown, North Carolina)

Earlier last week 52 Pickup Racing opened up its social media channels to questions for T.B. Dee, driver of the Monday Cigarettes race car.  Here’s three:

“T.B., what are your goals for the 2021 NASCAR Cup season?” —Randy Hoiles, Tractor Mechanic (Baltimore, Maryland)

“I think we have the same goals as every other team—limit mistakes, learn a lot, bring home the car in one piece, and crack the top-30 when we can.  I bet the Penske and Gibbs guys are saying the exact same things right now.” —T.B.

“Hey T.B., I’m a pretty big race fan and even I didn’t know much about you.  How did you get your ride with 52 Pickup Racing?” —Chris Milligan, Beverage Salesman (Sarasota, Florida)

“Oh, I came up like most drivers do—running regional late model and sprint car series like the Southern United Challenger Kings Series (SUCKS) and the Birmingham-Leeds Outlaw World Series (BLOWS).  Then it was just the luck of the draw, I guess, that led me to this great race team’s Craigslist post.” —T.B.

“Hey T.B., sorry to reach you like this, but I don’t have your cell number.  Remember that we need you at the race shop tomorrow to help install the insulation.  We don’t want those race cars getting cold!” —Otto Neu, Compounding Pharmacist and 52 Pickup Racing co-owner (Charlotte, North Carolina).

“Thanks for the heads up—hopefully this time I don’t get all itchy” —T.B.

QUOTES: “When it comes to the new teams competing in the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series, 52 Pickup Racing is definitely one of them.” —Joe Devereaux, Boogertown Bugle

“T.B. Dee is a…driver with…experience and (not) a danger to others on the track” —Mike Orsulak, NASCAR Preview

ABOUT 52 PICKUP RACING: 52 Pickup Racing is NASCAR Cup’s newest race team.  Based out of Boogertown North Carolina, the team employs up-and-coming driver T.B. Dee and hopes to have its race shop completely enclosed by the next cold snap.

For more information please visit the 52 Pickup Racing website at

For all media inquiries please contact Moxoc Media at moxoc(at)

Nascar Fan Unsure When He Should Tell Prospective Girlfriend That He’s a Nascar Fan

The pandemic has changed many things about the world, including the dating process. But for one bachelor, one thing remains the same—how long till he tells a woman he’s been talking to that he’s a Nascar fan?

“I’ve been talking to this really cool girl over the phone the past few weeks”, said Glen Mills, a web designer from suburban Philadelphia. “We’ve really been clicking, and our FaceTime dinner went fantastic. But when do I spring it on her that I’m into Nascar?”

Glen Mills, shown here deliberating
when is the right time to tell someone
that he occasionally watches 

Mills, a longtime fan of Nascar, explained that he had run into issues with declaring his fandom in the past. 

“This one girl I met in college just laughed at me and made a bunch of redneck jokes”, Mills lamented. “One woman I met at my cousin’s wedding recoiled when I told her, and said ‘oh. I think my uncle’s into that’. And another woman I met online stopped replying to me once I said I was spending the weekend at Dover (International Speedway).”

Mills also noted that despite his difficulties, he was not specifically searching for a race fan as a girlfriend. 

“Oh, dating a race fan would be great”, Mills said, “but it’s by no means a deal-breaker. I just want to be with someone—well, once things get back to normal—who won’t mock me for watching a race instead of a meaningless baseball or football game.”

The woman in question, who Mills describes as “very funny, very cute, and about a 20 minute drive away”, could not be reached for comment, but Mills appears to have a plan in place to break the news. 

“Next Friday night we’re going to do a FaceTime ‘Wine Night’”, Mills said. “If things go well I might tell her how much I’m looking forward to Daytona. I just hope she doesn’t want immediately ask me what drivers do doing races when they have to pee.”

2020 Donruss Panini Nascar Cards Unboxing BONUS PACK

After unboxing and unwrapping a box of 2020 Donruss (Panini) Nascar trading cards, I decided to keep going.  Now we dive into two “Blaster Boxes”—small boxes of 7 packs each.  Join us as we go through each eight-card pack to find the good, the bad, and the downright weird.

BONUS PACK—Mail Away for Red Today and You’ll Get Gray
So Donruss/Panini had a program where you could mail in wrappers and a small processing fee and get a special five-card pack in exclusive reflective red.  While the style itself is unique, the cards aren’t exactly so, as I’m pretty sure I got all these in other forms.

FIRST THING’S FIRST: I only got one pack, so I can’t say for sure, but it wouldn’t surprise me if the Gray Gaulding Panini-sponsored card was standard in all of them.

SECOND LOOK: Remember Danica?  She’s back—in reflective red form!

TO THE BACK: Thankfully those diagonal arrows are just part of the design—that, or Joey Logano’s having a major trip.

FINAL SCORE: 6 bonus points out of 10

Rookie Team and Driver Spend Offseason Testing “Building the Notebook”

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (Boogertown, North Carolina)

When you’re NASCAR Cup’s newest team, nothing comes easy.  And so 52 Pickup Racing and its rookie driver T.B. Dee have spent a good portion of the offseason testing schedule “Building the Notebook”, and the old saying goes, in preparation for the 2021 season.

“Well, first we had to get some paper”, Dee said from a relocatable trailer next to the under construction race shop.  “Then we got some cardboard that could serve as a cover and a backing—nobody likes it when they can’t write because the paper they’re using keeps curling up.  Then came the all-important binding process.”

“I feel this was a great team building exercise for all of us”, said John Scheneberg, one of the fifty-two co-owners of 52 Pickup Racing.  “I mean, anyone can buy a mass-produced notebook at the dollar store, or use a computer tablet, but really, what do you learn from that?  We want to make sure everything we do here is produced in-house, from our notebooks to our car parts that are being shipped in later this week.”

“I even got part of a Monday Cigarettes carton for the cover”, Dee said, referencing the team’s primary sponsor.  “Now with the notebook ready to be written in, there’s nothing that can stop us now.”

QUOTES: “First thing’s first—‘This Notebook is Property T.B. Dee” —T.B. Dee, 52 Pickup Racing driver.

“We used some old leftover string to weave the pages together with a needle—and they said home ec was a waste of time!” —John Scheneberg, co-owner of 52 Pickup Racing.

ABOUT 52 PICKUP RACING: 52 Pickup Racing is NASCAR Cup’s newest race team.  Based out of Boogertown North Carolina, the team employs up-and-coming driver T.B. Dee and is looking for volunteers with excellent lung capacity to blow on their car in lieu of a wind tunnel.

For more information please visit the 52 Pickup Racing website at

For all media inquiries please contact Moxoc Media at moxoc(at)