Furniture Row Racing Has a New Crew Chief and Outlook

Charlotte, NC – Furniture Row Racing, the only NASCAR racing shop located west of the Mississippi, had plenty of announcements and exciting news in their stop on the Charlotte Motor Speedway Media Tour on Thursday.

The first announcement was that the team has a new associate sponsor in Visser Precision LLC. It’s a limited liability company owned by Barney Visser, who also owns Furniture Row Racing and its main sponsor. The advanced manufacturing solutions provider, utilizing special alloys and proprietary manufacturing methods, is headquartered in a state-of-the-art facility in Denver, Colorado, which also serves as the team’s home base. The business grew out of the race team, and its president, Ryan Coniam, is a former race engineer and crew chief in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.

Cole Pearn was also announced as the crew chief for the Furniture Row Chevrolet. Pearn has been promoted from lead race engineer to crew chief of the No. 78 Chevrolet driven by Martin Truex Jr. in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, Furniture Row Racing announced Wednesday. Pear replaces Todd Berrier, who has been offered a key position to remain at Furniture Row Racing.

Joe Garone, Furniture Row Racing’s general manager, said the team has also made new hires to strengthen the engineering staff.

“In an effort to continue to move the team forward we feel the personnel changes and new additions will yield positive results on the race track,” said Garone in a statement. “Cole has played a vital role in our growth. The well-rounded skill sets that he brings to the table in his new position as crew chief will be instrumental in our commitment to once again become a Chase participant. As a former racer and an experienced engineer, Cole has a thorough understanding of what it takes to bring us to that level.”

After a less than successful season, Martin Truex, Jr. is looking forward to 2015 with girlfriend, Sherry Pollex who battled cancer last year.

“Honestly, there were times last year when I felt like when Thursday came around and it was time to go to the race track, I really enjoyed that. I needed that getaway; I needed to get to the race track and take out some frustration and get with the guys and be a part of the team, even though it wasn’t going good. At times, it was still therapeutic for me just to be there and be doing my thing and getting in the zone and trying to forget about everything else that was going on.”

Pollex announced Aug. 13 her diagnosis with ovarian cancer, two days before she underwent surgery to battle the disease. Though Truex said he found a sort of refuge in competing, he skipped that Friday of practice and qualifying at Michigan International Speedway to be with Pollex through the procedure.

He has to thank Barney Visser for the support given him.

“When Sherry got diagnosed, he called me and said, ‘You don’t have to race. You can take off the next 10 races and the car will be there for you next year,'” Truex said. “That’s the kind of guy he is, and to have somebody like that stand behind you and say, ‘Hey, we’re here for you and we’ll do whatever it takes,’ it means the world to me, and I’m going to do my best this year to make that up to him.”

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of

Ron Fleshman
Ron Fleshman has followed NASCAR racing since attending his first race at Martinsville Speedway in 1964. He joined the Motor Sports Forum on the CompuServe network in the 1980s and became a reporter for Racing Information Systems in 1994. In 2002, he was named NASCAR Editor for RIS when it appeared on the World Wide Web as He can now be found at Ron is a member of the American Auto Racing Writers and Broadcasters Association. You can find Ron following and reporting on the top three NASCAR divisions each week. As a lifer in his support of racing, he attends and reports on nearly 30 events a year and as a member of the motor sports media, his passion has been racing for 47 years. He lives with his family in rural West Virginia and works in the insurance industry when not on the road to another track.

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