Just days after announcing the release of James Buescher from the team, Turner-Scott Motorsports has announced his replacement.
21-year-old Ben Kennedy will drive the No. 31 Chevrolet Silverado full-time next year for TSM in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, going after the Rookie of the Year Award. Kennedy made his NCWT debut last year, earning a best career finish of fourth at Martinsville Speedway.
“I’m really excited about the opportunity to be in Turner Scott Motorsports’ No. 31 truck for 2014 and to be able to work alongside Michael Shelton and a very talented crew,” Kennedy said. “It will be a great year and I hope to really learn a lot in the series and compete for wins and Rookie of the Year. It’s going to be a blast to work with such great people; I can’t thank everyone I’ve worked with in the past enough for getting me to this point in my career. A big ‘thank you’ to all my fans for always sticking behind me.”
The great grandson of NASCAR founder Bill France Sr. ran the full NASCAR K&N Pro Series East schedule last year for TSM, finishing fourth in points with two wins, two poles, three top fives and nine top 10s. He was also crowned the series’ Most Popular Driver.
“We are very excited to have Ben [Kennedy] running full time for us in the Truck Series,” team co-owner Harry Scott Jr. said. “I believe we all have seen his potential over the last few years and we’re looking forward to seeing all that he can accomplish while running for us full time. He’s an impressive young man who is not only a talented racer, but also very smart and very driven. Turner Scott Motorsports has always been about developing talent for the future of our sport, and Ben is very representative of that. I know that everyone in our organization, especially the No. 31 crew, is looking forward to working with Ben and having a very successful year.”
In 2012, Kennedy competed in the first NASCAR-sanctioned Euro Racecar Series event, winning the event at Tours Speedway, the first NASCAR race held on an oval in Europe.
Kennedy began his racing career on the short tracks in Central Florida, won a pair of Pro-Truck Championship titles at Orlando Speedworld and New Smyrna Speedway in 2009, followed by a Super Late Model Championship at Orlando Speedworld in 2010.
Michael Shelton will remain with the team in hopes to leading them to their second championship after winning the 2012 title with James Buescher.
Buescher left the TSM team to join RAB Racing for 2014 and beyond to run their No. 99 Toyota Camry in the Nationwide Series.
TSM is expected to continue to announce their driver line-up for 2014 in the coming weeks. It has already been announced that Jeb Burton will return to the No. 4 Chevrolet Silverado full-time in the NCWTS with a part-time NNS schedule.
It is expected that Kyle Larson will be in a NNS car for TSM for a handful of races while tackling the full Cup Series schedule as a rookie with Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing. Other rumors have Justin Allgaier moving up to Cup with Phoenix Raceway, opening up the No. 31 Brandt Chevrolet Camaro for next year. With TSM moving up Kennedy, you can also expect them to move up 2013 NASCAR K&N Pro Series East Champion Dylan Kwasniewski to a full-time NCWT ride, possibly.