NASCAR Cup Series

A Win-Win-Win Scenario For Leavine, DiBenedetto, And Toyota

On Wednesday, Leavine Family Racing announced that Matt DiBenedetto would be the driver of their No. 95 in 2019.

Also, the team also confirmed they would be switching to Toyota and forming an alliance with Joe Gibbs Racing.

These moves are wins for everybody involved.

It’s a victory for LFR, a young team who has yet to make a significant impact in the sport now takes over the spot Furniture Row Racing currently has with Gibbs.

While there is no guarantee that they perform as well as FRR, this is a team that is currently used to qualifying around 25th and finishing around 20th; the opportunity at hand give them to an excellent chance to improve. They will now have the assistance of one of the best organizations in NASCAR and manufacture support from the defending manufacturers’ champion.

On the flip side, the move works well for JGR and Toyota as they will not lose a team at the end of the season despite FRR’s demise.

Besides, if all goes well, the two could have a potential landing spot in Cup for some of their development drivers that are currently rising the ranks of NASCAR. Whereas without LFR and with the four-car limit the sport has in place, they could lose drivers as they have with Noah Gragson, William Byron, and Ryan Preece due to not having enough room. With the No. 95 in their stable, they now have that chance to work with Leavine and possibly create a situation like they had in 2017, where Erik Jones ran full-time in Cup with FRR.

The move is also a win for DiBenedetto, their newly acquired driver.

The 27-year-old who left his home for the last two years in Go Fas Racing simply because of the fact he wanted a chance to prove himself. The move to the No. 95 allows him.

DiBenedetto, who has went from starting and parking to racing in lower-funded rides, now has an opportunity to show everyone that he belongs here.

The California-native showed that his skill when scoring the occasional top-10’s with BK Racing and Go Fas; if he can continue to exceed exactions with his new team, the potential for more success will continue to grow.

With all the changes that are coming in 2019, this may be one that will require the most attention as the season progresses.

Can they see success even close to the bar set by Furniture Row? How much will they improve? All these questions will eventually be answered, but for now, Leavine Family Racing appears to be heading in a positive direction.


TWITTER: @MitchellB66

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By Mitchell Breuer

Mitchell Breuer, is a 22-year-old Minnesota native who is currently attending Winona State University to obtain a degree in Mass Communications-Journalism. In addition to POPULAR SPEED, Mitchell is currently the sports editor at WSU's student paper, The Winonan.