Erik Jones’ Darlington win gives Joe Gibbs Racing four chances at a title in 2019


September 3, 2019 - 10:11 AM

Erik Jones is introduced before the Consumers Energy 400 NASCAR race at Michigan International Speedway on Aug. 11. MARY LEWANDOWSKI

DARLINGTON, S.C. (AP) — Joe Gibbs has had the hottest hand in NASCAR this season. Now, after Erik Jones’ gritty, overnight victory at Darlington Raceway, the championship owner has four aces ready to contend for another title.

Kyle Busch, Denny Hamlin and Martin Truex Jr. have each won four times this season. The weak spot seemed to be Jones, a talented young driver carefully brought along by Joe Gibbs Racing who had yet to truly take flight in the NASCAR Cup Series.

But with Busch charging up behind the 23-year-old Jones’ bumper, the youngster kept out in front to win the rain-delayed Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway in the early morning hours Monday.

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