A roller coaster ride is an adrenaline rush that has its fast and fun moments, plus some disappointing lapses in excitement. Brandon Jones could say that his 2014 season has been just like the thrills of a roller coaster with the ups and downs he has experienced so far.
The 17-year-old from Atlanta, Georgia started off his year with a wild ride at Speedfest to a string of wins in the ARCA Racing Series and NASCAR K&N Pro Series East within a four-week span.
But as we go into the last quarter of 2014, some wonder what will be next on his yearlong adventure. Jones recently parted ways with Turner Scott Motorsports in light of the latest news between the two owners that has affected their NASCAR Camping World Truck Series program.
He recently told Speed51.com powered by JEGS that he will be finishing out his 2014 NASCAR K&N Pro Series East driving for Richard Childress Racing, given the current situation at TSM.
“We have known Richard (Childress) forever and by luck they had been doing Cale Conley’s cars in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series, but hasn’t ran the whole season,” Jones said. “So we are able to run his car for the last two races.”
Jones did confirm that, at this time, he is not planning on doing any more NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races or ARCA Racing Series events this year. In his first run in an RCR K&N East effort at Greenville Pickens Speedway last week, Jones finished seventh.
His season literally got off to a wet start back on January 24th at Watermelon Capital Speedway in Cordele, Georgia for Speedfest 2014. He went down to drive Cale Gale’s Super Late Model.
“The first lap on the track at Watermelon and the throttle hung open. I went through the watermelon patch and ended up in a creek,” Jones recalled of his incident. “It’s pretty funny, I was talking to people before I got in the car about there being a creek and how some have gone in it when they have wrecked. Go figure, we were the ones to go in it. It was a long day, but we got it fixed and ended up doing pretty well in the race.”
The crew got the car put back together for the big event on Sunday and Jones brought it home with an 11th place finish.
After that race, he teamed up with Turner Scott Motorsports and started competing in NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, ARCA Racing Series and NASCAR K&N Pro Series East events.
“At the first K&N race at New Smyrna Speedway, we led a number of laps and got a third place finish. That was a pretty big game changer for me,” Jones said. “Last year, I think we got wrecked at Bristol, which was a crazy track for us to start out at. After that, we kind of started going downhill, little depressed and it got us mad. But we are all on our game and everything is really coming together and it was starting to show.”
Jones is currently third in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East points after 15 of 16 events. He has one win, five top-five and 11 top-ten finishes so far this season.
His only win so far in K&N came on Friday, August 1st at Iowa Speedway in Newton, Iowa. A race where both the East and West divisions raced together.
He has also made three starts in the ARCA Racing Series where he has been impressive so far with two wins and a third-place finish. Those two wins came in his first two starts at two Indiana tracks, Winchester Speedway and Lucas Oil Raceway.
“It was a pretty crazy win at Winchester in the ARCA car. That finish was pretty dramatic with two people going at it for the win,” Jones recalled of what some said was an aggressive move that Jones made on Mason Mitchell in the final turns to get the victory. “I think that win carried our momentum to victories at ORP and the K&N race at Iowa Speedway.”
He also has three starts in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series this season where he has one top-five finish, a fourth place finish at Dover International Speedway.
Jones hopes to go into the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East finale at Dover on Friday, September 26th.
“I am really looking forward to going back to Dover, especially after our top-five finish in the Trucks earlier this year,” Jones said. “I think we will be pretty good in the K&N car as well. I think Richard Childress Racing will have a great car for us.”
After Dover, he is hoping to get back behind the wheel of a Super Late Model and compete in some of the upcoming races like the Snowball Derby and Winchester 400.
“It would be awesome to go back to Winchester driving a lighter car then what I drove in July,” Jones said. “It was wicked fast in an ARCA car, I can’t imagine what it would feel like in a Super Late Model.”
– Kevin Ramsell, Speed51.com Director of Business/Midwest Editor. Twitter: @KevinRamsell
Photo Credit: Speed51.com