Another full-time entry for the 2018 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season has been confirmed, as Niece Motorsports announced Tuesday that Justin Fontaine will drive the full schedule in their No. 45 Chevrolet Silverado.
Fontaine, 20, was originally supposed to run the full ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards schedule for Win-Tron Racing. However, Fontaine suffered a mild compression fracture of the L1-veterbra in this crash in the season-opening Lucas Oil Complete Engine Treatment 200.
The injury kept Fontaine out of the No. 33 Toyota until Elko in June. He also missed the dirt races (K&N Pro Series East and Dirt Modified veteran Tyler Dippel subbed) and Road America, where Austin Wayne Self drove in his place.
Team owner Al Niece is happy to have Fontaine in the fold for 2018.
“We are thrilled to have Justin join the team next season,” said Niece. “In speaking with Justin, his excitement for the 2018 season is contagious. As a group we are really looking forward to getting this season started. There’s a lot of work to be done, but we have a solid group who’s ready to hit the ground running.”
Fontaine, from Asheville, N.C., began racing in quarter midgets in 2008, progressing through Late Models and the K&N Pro Series East.
“This is an exciting time in my career and I believe I’m ready for this next challenge with Niece Motorsports,” said Fontaine. “I know I have a lot to learn, but with the leadership of Niece Motorsports and the support of my management team at AM Racing, I believe I can transition well and produce some good results in my rookie season.”
Fontaine has three NCWTS starts in his career, with a best finish of 15th at Pocono. He drove the No. 45 to a 17th-place finish in his lone start with the team at Chicagoland Speedway (pictured above).
A crew chief and sponsors are yet to be determined, though Fontaine will have Self as a full-time teammate.
Self has finished 15th in the CWTS points standings both years he has competed.
The Niece No. 45 truck finished 17th in CWTS owner points in 2017, competing in 22 of the 23 races with a variety of drivers.