In 2022, Front Row Motorsports (FRM) will once again have a mix of veteran leaders and winning young drivers stepping into new roles.
Michael McDowell will drive the # 34 Ford Mustang in the NASCAR Cup Series. He will be teammate of Todd Gilliland who takes over the Ford Mustang n ° 38. Two-time NASCAR Camping World Series championship finalist Zane Smith joins FRM to drive the # 38 Truck Series Ford F-150.
Gilliland makes the jump to the NASCAR Cup Series to compete for the Sunoco Rookie of the Year title after three full-time seasons in the Truck Series, the last two with FRM. In 2021, Gilliland took one victory, 16 top-10s and 10 top-five, resulting in a career best year. He led FRM to fourth in the Owners Championship. Gilliland will work with Team Leader Seth Barbour.
Gilliland follows her father, David, as the No. 38 Ford driver for FRM in the NASCAR Cup Series.
“I feel like I have found a home with FRM,” said Gilliland. “I was on the team when I was young and watched my dad run. I joined the truck team here and it has been a great place for my career. I can’t wait to compete in the NASCAR Cup Series. I know the challenges ahead, but I plan to be here and help grow with this team for a long time.
“Todd was part of the FRM family even before he started his own racing career,” added owner Bob Jenkins. “We know Todd is committed to helping our # 38 program. He helped us kick our truck program into a winning team and that’s our goal for him and the 38 Cup team.
McDowell looks back on the # 34 Ford Mustang with crew chief Drew Blickensderfer. This will be their fifth year together and their partnership continues to lead FRM. Last season they again set new records for the organization with five top 10s and two top fives. Their season was marked by the victory of the Daytona 500.
“It’s been a storytelling season for Michael, Drew and Team 34,” Jenkins continued. “They helped us take it to the next level and now we have to keep going and take it to the next level. The new car gives us a wonderful opportunity to do that.
“I’m really looking forward to 2022 and the new start it will bring to all of sport,” McDowell said. “It’s an exciting time for the NASCAR Cup Series and for us at FRM. We have proven that we can win and now we want to find that consistency throughout the season to be even better. ”
FRM welcomes Smith to its NASCAR Camping World Truck Series team, which has just completed consecutive seasons as a Series Championship finalist Smith has recorded three race wins and 27 top 10s in his two full seasons in the series. The 22-year-old Huntington Beach, Calif. Native will work with team manager Chris Lawson with the goal of winning the championship in 2022.
“I’ve watched Zane for the past few seasons,” Jenkins said. “He’s a young driver who has proven himself and he shows a lot of promise. We want to get him that championship in 2022, but also, we want to have Zane with us for a long time. We see a bright future for him.
“I competed against Front Row for the wins last season and I know how competitive the team is,” said Smith, the 2021 most popular NASCAR Camping World Series driver. “Bob Jenkins gave me a wonderful opportunity to race for the Truck Championship again. Most importantly, there is an opportunity to grow with them in the future.
The 2021 season will mark its 13th with Ford Performance, the team’s manufacturing partner since expanding to a multi-car organization in 2010.
FRM will announce team partners ahead of the 2022 Daytona 500 and throughout next season.