Race Weekend Central

Nelson Piquet Jr. to Make Nationwide Series Debut at Watkins Glen

On Tuesday, Baker-Curb Racing announced that Nelson Piquet Jr. will make his Nationwide Series debut in Saturday’s Zippo 200 behind the wheel of the BCR No. 27 Ford Fusion. This is just the next step in Piquet’s transition from Formula 1 to NASCAR, with the eventual goal being to race in the Sprint Cup Series.

Baker-Curb Racing President Matt Crews is pleased to have the former Renault driver into the fold for this weekend.

“We are excited to have Nelson driving our No. 27 Ford Fusion this weekend at Watkins Glen,” Crews said. “He has been very successful in his transition to American stock car racing this season; running well on the oval tracks in both the Camping World trucks and the ARCA Series cars. We feel that although it is his first time in a Nationwide Series car he will be able to compete for a win on the road course and help us in our battle to remain in the top 10 in owner’s points.”

Piquet Jr. is very pleased to be making his Nationwide Series debut at Watkins Glen.

“I’m really excited to do my first road-course NASCAR race in the Nationwide Series with Baker-Curb Racing,” Piquet Jr. said on Tuesday. “I can’t wait to get back in the driving seat! I’ve had a good year having positive experiences in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and the ARCA Racing Series. I’ve learned so much every time I’ve raced, had some encouraging results and this is another good step for me. Everything will be new again, from the team to the car and the track, but I’m sure I’ll get up to speed quickly and have another really constructive race weekend in NASCAR.”

Since transitioning from F1 to stock cars, Piquet Jr. has made four starts in the Camping World Truck Series for Red Horse Racing and Billy Ballew Motorsports. In the four truck races, Piquet has done very well, earning three top-10 finishes with a personal best of sixth at Daytona in Red Horse Racing’s No. 1 Toyota. Meanwhile, in the ARCA Racing Series presented by Re/Max and Menards, Piquet has run well, but doesn’t quite have the finishes to show for it. His personal best finish is a ninth in the Rattlesnake 150 at Texas Motor Speedway, where he started on pole.

For Baker-Curb Racing’s No. 27 team, Piquet Jr. will be the ninth driver this season to sit behind the wheel and the fifth different driver in as many weeks. So far this season, the team’s best finishes are a pair of second place efforts at Auto Club Speedway and Richmond with Greg Biffle behind the wheel. The team has four top-five finishes (the two runner-up finishes, a fifth with Biffle at Phoenix, and a fifth at Road America with Australian Owen Kelly) and nine top 10s this season. Even with eight different drivers racing the No. 27, the team still sits 10th in Nationwide Series owner points.

About the author

Phil Allaway has three primary roles at Frontstretch. He's the manager of the site's FREE e-mail newsletter that publishes Monday-Friday and occasionally on weekends. He keeps TV broadcasters honest with weekly editions of Couch Potato Tuesday and serves as the site's Sports Car racing editor.

Outside of Frontstretch, Phil is the press officer for Lebanon Valley Speedway in West Lebanon, N.Y. He covers all the action on the high-banked dirt track from regular DIRTcar Modified racing to occasional visits from touring series such as the Super DIRTcar Series.

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