By Seth Eggert, NASCAR Correspondent
Veteran NASCAR Xfinity Series driver Joey Gase will move to Carl Long’s Motorsports Business Management team for the 2019 season. He will drive the No. 35 Eternal Fans Toyota Supra full-time.
Gase will also attempt the 2019 running of the Daytona 500 in MBM’s No. 66.
Gase has 208 starts including the last five full seasons. He has just one top-five, fifth-place at Talladega Superspeedway, and three top-10 finishes. In the 2018 season, Gase drove for Go Green Racing. He had his best performance since the 2014 season, finishing 20th in the final points standings for the second time.
“I didn’t know where I was going to be for sure,” Gase admitted. “I’m really excited to be here with Carl and to be in the No. 35 car again in the Xfinity Series, and the No. 66 car on the Cup side. Carl’s team has grown a lot these past couple of years. Having someone put it together now, and not in the middle of the season or at the start of it, I think it’ll be something good that we can grow on and have a really good year.”
Gase’s performance has improved consistently since 2016. In 2018, he posted his best average start, 24.0, and finish, 22.2. Gase also earned his best career finish in his limited Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series starts, 18th at Talladega.
“Over the last three or four years, Joey and I have always been parked besides, if not close to each other in the garage when he was driving for our buddy, Jimmy Means,” Long explained. “Joey and I have always been standing beside each other at driver intros, so we’ve always communicated. As he was growing with his sponsorship and racing stuff, we happened to be a fit for him this year.
“For him to be able to put together sponsorship packages on his own, along with our own, to help us get to the racetrack, because we pretty much race off of whatever we have to spend. And if all we have to spend is what NASCAR is paying us, then that’s what we’re racing off of. So, to be able to bring some sponsorship along too, it steps our program up, and he doesn’t have to go shopping around running with one guy.”
MBM Motorsports has 200 Xfinity and 32 Cup Series starts. In that time, the under-funded organization has earned just one top-10 finish with Timmy Hill at Daytona International Speedway. MBM also utilized used equipment from major teams, including the ‘zombie-Dodges.’ Although the team has used cars from all three manufacturers, they use what they can in their attempt to keep up with the major teams.
“Don’t get me wrong, we cannot race on the lower end, if we didn’t have associations with the big guys,” Long said. “They have parts that they mileage out that still have two or three races of life left in them. We’re able to purchase those at way discounted prices. That’s how we’re able to offer a lot for a sponsor without having to break their budget to get on the racetrack and get involved in NASCAR.”