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RCR Race Preview: Charlotte Motor Speedway

Richard Childress Racing in the NASCAR Cup Series at Charlotte Motor Speedway… Richard Childress Racing has earned eight NASCAR Cup Series victories on the oval at Charlotte Motor Speedway. The team has six 600-mile wins to their credit (Dale Earnhardt – 1986, 1992, 1993, Kevin Harvick – 2011, 2013, and Austin Dillon – 2017). Both Kyle Busch (sixth) and Austin Dillon (ninth) scored top-10 finishes in the 2023 Coca-Cola 600.

Richard Childress Racing in the NASCAR Xfinity Series at Charlotte Motor Speedway… RCR has also found success in the NASCAR Xfinity Series at Charlotte Motor Speedway with five victories, most recently when Tyler Reddick captured the checkered flag in 2019. Dillon swept both spring and fall races on the 1.5-mile layout in 2015. Jeff Green gave the Welcome, N.C., based company its first NASCAR Xfinity Series victory in 2002 (spring). In 2023, Austin Hill led the RCR stable with a fourth-place finish at the Concord, N.C. facility.

Honor and Remember… As a tradition like none other on Memorial Day weekend, RCR is honored to pay tribute to the brave men and women of the armed forces who have made the ultimate sacrifice for freedom. Everyone at RCR, led by Richard Childress, expresses deep gratitude to those who have paid the price for this country both near and abroad. During the Coca-Cola 600, please take a moment to remember their loved ones left behind as each life will not be forgotten.

In Memory of Patrick Gottsch… All five RCR cars entered this weekend at Charlotte Motor Speedway will carry a special decal to remember the life of Patrick Gottsch. Gottsch dedicated his time to building Rural Media Group, parent company to RFD-TV, The Cowboy Channel, The Cowgirl Channel, and Rural Radio SiriusXM. Launching in 2017, The Cowboy Channel became the first 24-hour network dedicated to western sports and the western lifestyle. Gottsch suddenly passed away on May 18 and was survived by his wife, Angie, and three daughters, Raquel, Gatsby, and Rose.

RCR in the News… Earlier this week, two exciting partnerships for Dillon and the No. 3 Cup Series program were announced. On Tuesday, Marine Toys for Tots®, America’s premier children’s Christmastime charity, joined the storied race organization to highlight the charity’s year-round programs. Watch the No. 3 Toys for Tots Chevrolet on track at Darlington Raceway in September. On Wednesday, a unique design was unveiled as Dow and their partners, Ducks Unlimited and Rivers Are Life, teamed up to support healthy ecosystems that benefit communities and the planet. The Dow Water and Nature Camaro will take to the track at WWT Raceway in June.

Catch the Action on Saturday… The BetMGM 300 at Charlotte Motor Speedway will be televised live on Saturday, May 25 beginning at 1 p.m. ET on FOX. The race will be broadcast live on the Performance Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90.

Follow Sunday’s Action at Charlotte… The Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway will be televised live on Sunday, May 26 beginning at 6 p.m. ET on FOX. The race will be broadcast live on the Performance Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90.

Austin Dillon and No. 3 Bass Pro Shops/TRACKER Boats Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 at Charlotte Motor Speedway… Austin Dillon earned his career-first NASCAR Cup Series win with a victory in the Coca-Cola 600 in May 2017. A native of North Carolina, Dillon has raced in 15 NASCAR Cup Series events at his home state track, posting five top-10 results. Dillon has completed 96 percent of the laps competed on the 1.5-mile racetrack and is a two-time winner at the speedway in the NASCAR Xfinity Series.

About Bass Pro Shops… Bass Pro Shops is North America’s premier outdoor and conservation company. Founded in 1972 when avid young angler Johnny Morris began selling tackle out of his father’s liquor store in Springfield, Missouri, today the company provides customers with unmatched offerings spanning premier destination retail, outdoor equipment manufacturing, world-class resort destinations, and more. In 2017 Bass Pro Shops united with Cabela’s to create a “best-of-the-best” experience with superior products, dynamic locations, and outstanding customer service. Bass Pro Shops also operates White River Marine Group, offering an unsurpassed collection of industry-leading boat brands, and Big Cedar Lodge, America’s Premier Wilderness Resort. Under the visionary conservation leadership of Johnny Morris, Bass Pro Shops is a national leader in protecting habitat and introducing families to the outdoors and has been named by Forbes as “one of America’s Best Employers.” Bass Pro Shops has a long relationship with NASCAR, dating back to 1998. For more information, visit

Supporting Our Heroes… Bass Pro Shops has a strong affinity for the armed forces and their families, a value that starts with the noted conservationist and visionary founder, Johnny Morris. His lifelong respect and gratitude to servicemen and women was strongly shaped by his father, John A. Morris, a decorated World War II veteran who proudly served his country in the Battle of the Bulge. There is no adequate way to properly thank our military and veterans, but Bass Pro Shops strives to honor their sacrifices and celebrate their heroism every day. Bass Pro Shops proudly employs over 4,000 Veteran Outfitters across North America.

Red, White, and Blue… Dillon’s Bass Pro Shops/TRACKER Boats Camaro features a special patriotic scheme for Sunday’s Coca-Cola 600 race. To honor all United States armed forces, both past and present, the No. 3 Chevrolet will sport red, white, and blue colors.

Honoring Captain Jennifer Moreno… As part of NASCAR’s 600 Miles of Remembrance program, the windshield header on the No. 3 Chevrolet will feature the name of United States Army Captain Jennifer Moreno. Moreno lost her life on October 6, 2013 in the Zhari district of Afghanistan. She served as a nurse and was part of the Army Special Operations Command attached to Bravo Company of the 3rd Ranger Bn. She was killed while trying to reach Sgt. Tom Block, who had been severely injured by a female suicide bomber. As a nurse, Moreno’s first response was to rush to the aid of Sgt. Block and other wounded Rangers. As she ran forward, she set off an IED and was killed. Moreno was posthumously promoted to the rank of Captain and was also awarded a Bronze Star Medal and the Purple Heart after her death in the line of duty. Sgt. Block, the ranger who Moreno rushed to aid, was the son of Timothy Collins, the Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s Hunting Lead in Owatonna, Minn.

Meet Dillon… On Saturday, May 25 at 11 a.m. ET, Dillon is scheduled to make an appearance at Boot Barn, located at 7940 Lyles Lane NW, Concord, N.C. 28027. On Sunday, May 26 at 12:15 p.m. ET, the veteran racer will participate in a question and answer session at the Speed Street Fan Zone Stage at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Stop by to hear Dillon, John Roberts, and Kenny Wallace.

Questions, Please… Dillon is scheduled to join BetMGM head of partnerships Kyle Wachtel to discuss this weekend’s race and RCR’s partnership with BetMGM on Saturday, May 25 at 3:45 p.m. The media availability will take place on Speed Street in front of the BetMGM display. Media are invited to stop by to learn more about BetMGM.


Where does the Coca-Cola 600 rank on your list of favorite races on the NASCAR Cup Series schedule?

“The Daytona 500 and the Coca-Cola 600 are two of my favorite races of the year. The Coca-Cola 600 is one of the toughest races on the calendar. It’s a rough track. It is a challenge to run 600 miles, but I enjoy challenges, so I always look forward to the race. I was able to win the Coca-Cola 600 in 2017 and we were close last year and finished ninth.”

What does racing on Memorial Day weekend mean to you?

“This weekend is about remembering those who gave everything to our country. It’s great to see the impact the 600 Miles of Remembrance program has on service members’ families. Captain Jennifer Moreno will race with me on the No. 3 Bass Pro Shops/TRACKER Boats Chevrolet this weekend and I’m very proud to honor her and her family at Charlotte Motor Speedway. There’s nothing like the National Anthem during the Coca-Cola 600. It’s a weekend of freedom.”

Kyle Busch and the No. 8 zone Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 at Charlotte Motor Speedway… Kyle Busch will make his 36th NASCAR Cup Series start on the 1.5-mile oval at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Busch won the 2018 Coca-Cola 600 in one of the most dominating performances of his career. The Las Vegas native started from the pole and led 377 of 400 laps on the way to his first win at the Concord, N.C. facility. His average running position in that race was a staggering 1.21 and Busch was the only driver to run all 400 laps inside the top-10. In 35 Cup Series races, Busch has 22 top-10 finishes, scoring a top-10 result in 62.85 percent of his starts – including six of his last seven at the speedway. Busch also has earned three pole positions – 2008 (spring), 2014 (fall), and 2018 (spring).

Stats of the Week… Among active Cup Series drivers, Busch sits second all-time in laps led (1,487) and is tied for the most top-five finishes (16) on the oval at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Points Update… Busch currently holds the 13th position in the Cup Series driver championship point standings, 34 points behind 10th-place.

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Honoring LCPL Jacob Levy… The windshield header on the No. 8 zone Chevrolet will feature the name of LCPL Christopher Phoenix-Jacob Levy, who lost his life on December 10, 2011 in Landstuhl, Germany – two and a half days after being wounded in Kajaki, Afghanistan. Jacob, as he was known to family and friends, made up his mind that he wanted to join the military when he was just nine years old to help get the perpetrators of the 9/11 attack on the Twin Towers. He joined the USMC JROTC in middle school, the Army JROTC in high school, and became a proud member of the Lumbee (Tuscarora/Waccamaw-Siouan) tribe of N.C. During his first deployment, Levy and his platoon were just outside the perimeter of where Bin Ladin was killed. He returned home on Mother’s Day 2011. Levy desired to be a part of something bigger than himself and make a difference. Not only did he pay the ultimate sacrifice, but he was an organ donor and seven people are living better lives today because of his donation.


You have five top-five finishes in the last seven Coca-Cola 600 races. Why does that race fit your driving style so well?

“The Coca-Cola 600 has been pretty good for me over the years. I’ve really just enjoyed that race. I’m probably one of the few guys left that have run the 600 miles for as long as I have, versus the rest of the guys only doing 400 mile races lately. You definitely know that you have to be ready for a long, long day. I used to think that running Xfinity and Truck races in the same weekend would allow your longevity to be longer for a 600 miler but I don’t get to run those as much. I don’t think that plays as much into the races currently.”

Last year the Coca-Cola 600 was rain-delayed to Monday and was then briefly stopped again before being completed. How mentally challenging is that for a driver to manage?

“Anytime you have rain delays it’s always tough. It’s not really what you set yourself up for but it’s a part of our sport. Being used to it and being around for 20 years, it gives you the opportunity to just have that experience of getting back going whenever the race does get back going. I think it’s a little bit frustrating when you’re starting the race and you know weather is coming and you run 20 laps even though you know the weather is coming. We might as well just not race at all and just postpone it. That saves the fans’ day, that saves the drivers’ day, the families’ day, everything in that respect plus it’s a 600 mile race. It’s long anyway so let’s not make it longer.”

Jesse Love and the No. 2 Whelen Chevrolet Camaro SS at Charlotte Motor Speedway… Jesse Love will make his inaugural NASCAR Xfinity Series start at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Saturday. Despite not having NASCAR race experience at the Concord, N.C. facility, the 19-year-old is already a race winner at the speedway. Last May in the ARCA Menards Series event, Love started from the pole position, led 67 laps, and secured the victory.

Testing 1, 2, 3… Prior to the start of the 2024 Xfinity Series season, Love was able to participate in a rookie test at Charlotte Motor Speedway. The Menlo Park, California native turned his first laps behind the wheel of the No. 2 Chevrolet on that day in January and spent hours making laps around the 1.5-mile oval.

Points Check… Love currently sits in the fourth position in the Xfinity Series driver championship point standings, 57 points behind points leader Austin Hill. in addition, Love continues to be ranked first in the Sunoco Rookie of the Year Point standings, 138 points above Shane van Gisbergen.

Manufactured in America… The No. 2 Whelen Chevrolet will sport a special red, white, and blue paint scheme this Memorial Day weekend to honor those who have and are currently serving our country and local communities. As a company that is “Trusted to Protect First Responders,” Whelen proudly manufactures all products in America and is committed to providing reliable products that keep first responders and their communities safe.

About Whelen Engineering… Whelen Engineering is a family-owned company with a pioneering spirit and a passion to protect the lives of those who protect and serve others. The company mission is to provide industry-defining safety solutions around the world, while creating a community of problem-solvers who are inspired to push boundaries and continue our legacy of delivering ground-breaking innovation. As a global leader in the emergency warning industry, Whelen has been trusted to perform since 1952, when George Whelen III invented the first rotating aviation beacon. Whelen now encompasses two state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities in Connecticut and New Hampshire with over 750,000 square feet of engineering and manufacturing space and the largest design staff in the industry. Every part of every Whelen product is proudly designed and manufactured in America. We embrace quality as our foundation, we celebrate innovative engineering in every product we produce.

Meet Love… On Saturday, May 25 at 10:15 a.m. ET, Love and his teammate Austin Hill are scheduled to sign autographs at the RCR Merchandise Hauler located in the Fan Zone at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Stop by to get your No. 2 gear and meet the rookie sensation.


One year ago, at Charlotte Motor Speedway, you won the ARCA Menards Series race from the pole and led the most laps. What about Charlotte do you think fits your driving style and made you so comfortable? “I perform well at tracks like Charlotte Motor Speedway that are banked and have a lot of grip. Going to a big and fast race track is good for me and suits my driving style really well. Race tracks like Kansas Speedway, Pocono Raceway, and Charlotte Motor Speedway really work with my driving style.”

How does your experience in the ARCA Menards Series car translate to the NASCAR Xfinity Series car? Do you think it has shortened your learning curve? What has that adjustment been like? “The ARCA time really helped to shorten my learning curve. The biggest thing was knowing how to drive a car on an intermediate sized track. The Xfinity car is definitely different from anything I’ve ever driven, but I wouldn’t say that it’s any harder. It suits my driving style, but overall driving the ARCA cars last year was a big advantage to me this year.”

Your first time in a NASCAR Xfinity Series car was at Charlotte Motor Speedway during a test and you had the opportunity to spend eight hours on the track. How is that experience going to help you going into this race? “It gives us a little bit of an advantage. Just knowing how the car is going to trend and how to unload in Charlotte, because I have laps there, is super important. Other races this year have shown that we can already unload fast, but now I know how the car will trend over the course of the run. We also have the qualifying run there, so going back there for a second time is a big advantage.”

Austin Hill and the No. 21 Bennett Transportation & Logistics Chevrolet Camaro SS at Charlotte Motor Speedway… Austin Hill has made three career NASCAR Xfinity Series starts at the Charlotte Motor Speedway oval, posting a fourth-place result one year ago while driving the No. 21 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet. The Winston, Ga. native has also competed in two NASCAR Truck Series races and one ARCA Menards Series event at the 1.5-mile speedway.

Top of the Hill… For the third time this season, Hill has returned to the top of the Xfinity Series driver championship point standings. The 30-year-old currently has a three-point lead over second-place Cole Custer.

Love Country. Love Trucking… Hill’s Bennett Transportation and Logistics Camaro will feature a special design at Charlotte Motor Speedway, highlighting Bennett Family of Companies’ patriotism core value and representing the hundreds of United States Military Veteran truck drivers in their fleet. The scheme showcases various specialized trucks hauling military freight, with the motto “Love Country. Love Trucking.” and highlights Bennett’s strong commitment to support the missions of our government to protect our country and advance freedom. For over 20 years, Bennett has been a tier one supplier to the United States government, with their team of secure truck drivers safely moving military vehicles, aircraft parts in support of the F-35 program, arms, ammunition, and explosives to bases across the country.

About Bennett Family of Companies… McDonough-Ga. based Bennett Family of Companies is a woman-owned, Women’s Enterprise Business Council (WBENC) certified, diversified transportation and logistics company. Through its 14 affiliated operating companies, the Bennett Family of Companies delivers integrated transportation and supply chain management solutions worldwide. Bennett has 4,625 drivers/owner-operators, over 1,000 employees and 600 agents located across the United States. For more information, visit

In Memory of Uncle Duane… The Bennett Transportation & Logistics Chevrolet will carry a special in memory decal at Charlotte Motor Speedway, as Hill and the RCR team help honor Maurice Duane Green. Green, the uncle of Bennett Family of Companies’ Vice President, Lynette Mathis, was a loyal race fan and supporter of Hill, who loved cheering on the No. 21 each week.

Meet Hill… On Saturday, May 25 at 10:15 a.m. ET, Hill and his teammate Jesse Love are scheduled to sign autographs at the RCR Merchandise Hauler located in the Fan Zone at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Stop by to get your No. 21 gear and have Hill sign the items purchased.


Talk about your Xfinity Series race at Charlotte Motor Speedway one year ago.

“Last year, it took a handful of laps for our car to come in at the beginning of a run, but once we got going, the handling would come alive. We made gains all day and made it better on the short run. Before our final pit stop under green, I was starting to run a couple guys down when they got to battling, but every time I would get closer to them, our car would get really tight. The track went through a change and our car would get loose. We played a pit strategy, thinking that the leaders wouldn’t be able to make it on fuel. Somehow, they did, but overall to get a top-five finish was good for our No. 21 team. I look forward to going back to Charlotte Motor Speedway again, especially with the Bennett Love Country. Love Trucking. military scheme. Our armed forces are the lifeline of our country and to honor them on this Memorial Day weekend is special.”

Kyle Busch and the No. 33 Rebel Bourbon/BetMGM Chevrolet Camaro SS at Charlotte Motor Speedway… Kyle Busch will make his 27th NASCAR Xfinity Series start on the Charlotte Motor Speedway oval. In 26 previous starts, Busch has nine wins (2004, 2005, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2013, 2020) and 22 top-10 results. Along with scoring a top-10 in 84.6 percent of his starts, Busch has an average finish of 6.40 and completed 96.5 percent of competed laps. In the veteran racer’s last Xfinity Series victory at the Concord, N.C. speedway in 2020, Busch led 94 laps and edged Daniel Hemric in NASCAR Overtime to secure the checkered flag.

Stat Leader… Busch leads all active NASCAR Xfinity Series drivers in every major statistical category at Charlotte Motor Speedway – wins (9), top-fives (19), top-10s (22) and laps led (1,475).

Did You Know? On May 24, 2003, Busch made his first-career Xfinity Series start at Charlotte Motor Speedway, scoring a second-place finish and leading 33 laps.

About Rebel® Bourbon… Distilled in Bardstown, Kentucky, by Lux Row Distillers Master Distiller John Rempe, Rebel Bourbon features a wheated mash bill that is true to its original recipe dating back to 1849. Known for its smoother, sweeter flavor, highlighted by delicious caramel and vanilla flavor notes, Rebel celebrates the “Rebel spirit in all of us” – especially those who embrace freedom, defiance and a little attitude. In 2023, Rebel Bourbon 10 Year Single Barrel Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey was awarded a gold medal at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition and a Double Platinum ASCOT award. The brand’s Rebel 100 Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey was awarded gold medals at the 2023 SIP and ASCOT awards.

About Luxco®… Founded in St. Louis in 1958 by the Lux Family, Luxco® is a leading producer, supplier, importer and bottler of beverage alcohol products. Our mission is to meet the needs and exceed the expectations of consumers, associates and business partners. Merged with MGP® Ingredients, Inc. in 2021 (Nasdaq: MGPI), Luxco operates as MGP’s Brands Division and manages all MGP/Luxco brands. This extensive and award-winning spirits portfolio includes well-known brands from four distilleries: Bardstown, Kentucky-based Lux Row Distillers®, home of Ezra Brooks®, Rebel®, Blood Oath®, David Nicholson® and Daviess County®; Lebanon, Kentucky-based Limestone Branch Distillery®, maker of Yellowstone® Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Minor Case® Straight Rye Whiskey and Bowling & Burch® Gin; Jalisco, Mexico-based Destiladora González Lux, producer of 100% agave tequilas, El Mayor®, Exotico® and Dos Primos®; and Ross & Squibb® Distillery in Lawrenceburg, Indiana, where Remus® Straight Bourbon Whiskey and Rossville Union® Straight Rye Whiskey are produced. The innovative and high-quality brand portfolio also includes Penelope® Bourbon, Everclear® Grain Alcohol, Pearl® Vodka, Saint Brendan’s® Irish Cream, The Quiet Man™ Irish Whiskey, Green Hat® Gin and other well-recognized brands. For more information about the company and its brands, visit

About BetMGM… BetMGM is a market-leading sports betting and gaming entertainment company, pioneering the online gaming industry. Born out of a partnership between MGM Resorts International and Entain Group, BetMGM has exclusive access to all of MGM’s U.S. land-based and online sports betting, major tournament poker, and online gaming businesses. Utilizing Entain’s U.S.-licensed, state-of-the-art technology, BetMGM offers sports betting and online gaming via market-leading brands, including BetMGM, Borgata Casino, Party Casino, and Party Poker. Founded in 2018, BetMGM is headquartered in New Jersey. Always Bet Responsibly. If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, Call 1-800-GAMBLER.


For the first time in your career, you will drive a RCR Xfinity Series car this weekend. How special is it and why was this opportunity so appealing?

“I’m definitely looking forward to running the Rebel Bourbon/BetMGM Camaro this weekend at Charlotte Motor Speedway. I think it’s going to be fun. I’m grateful for the opportunity from Richard Childress and everybody in the Xfinity shop. It’s been pretty good to talk with crew chiefs Danny Stockman and Andy Street to get their insight and try to help them with some ideas and concepts to be ready to roll. This opportunity is appealing not only to get out there and run in the Xfinity Series again, but also to help RCR’s development.”

What are your expectations for the race?

“Our expectation is obviously to win. I’ve won 102 of these races, so it shouldn’t be too foreign to me to get into another car, try to go out there and win the race. There’s obviously going to be some stiff competition. I’m looking forward to working with Austin Hill and Jesse Love. They’ve been fast at the mile-and-a-half tracks this season and they’ve done a good job. I’m just excited to see what it’s all about.”

Will you be able to work closely with RCR drivers Jesse Love and Austin Hill? Can you teach rookie Jesse Love something at this level?

“Jesse Love is so new and fresh to it that the opportunity of his learning and asking questions is wide-open. He probably has more questions than I have answers, but he’s learned a lot already and done a really good job for as young as he is. Austin Hill has been around the Truck and Xfinity Series long enough now that there’s probably not too much to tell him. It’s all about car feel and my description of everything to the crew chief and to the team. How they describe might be different than what I do. Even if we have the same setup, we could say it different ways.”

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


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