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Everything About Joe Gibbs Racing and Toyota’s Relationship

Srijan Mandal
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From a Super Bowl Winner to a NASCAR Owner, How Joe Gibbs Managed the Epic Transition

Joe Gibbs Racing and Toyota Racing Development have been in a strong partnership since they got together in the 2008 season. Over the years the team has gone on to win two Cup championships (2015 and 2019) adding to their tally of five and four Xfinity Series championships (2009, 2016, 2021, and 2022).

But before the Toyota dream team came to fruition, they were partnered up with Chevrolet, where JGR also managed to pick up three championships (2000, 2002, 2005). But after a certain point in time, something changed that led to Joe Gibbs Racing moving away from the American brand.

While speaking in a podcast interview, JGR bossman Joe Gibbs explained, “When I wanted to get in racing, GM took a chance on me, I always appreciate that. And we mentioned Rick (Hendrick) helping. So we spent that time with them and won championships there.”

He added, “But when Toyota came along, and we had a chance to talk to them that if we stayed inside of GM… Rick Hendrick was always going to be in front of us really, and Richard Childress, you know eight championships was always going to kind of be in front of us. So we were kind of third, at least, if not lower, from some of the other teams there inside of GM.”

Joe Gibbs on why Toyota was a fantastic partnership for JGR

Speaking further into the interview, Coach Gibbs explained how partnering with Toyota back then meant that they had a chance to “distinguish” themselves and “have a chance to be a key player for them.” This wasn’t going to be possible with the GM-owned Chevy considering they already had top teams like Hendrick Motorsports and Richard Childress Racing under their roster.

He then stated, “So we made that step and when you get in partnerships, particularly in something like this where racing is so hard, so many struggles you’re gonna go through the ups and downs. I can say this, that’s been a fantastic partnership.”

“Every time we kind of were down in some way. It was always hey we’re going to work and we’re going to work together and it was never pointed fingers. We’re going to fix this together and work our way back out of it.”

He concluded by mentioning how with Toyota along with them they always came forward and helped out when the times were rough and constantly tried to find ways to make things better again, instead of just pointing fingers back and forth. He also mentioned how everyone at Toyota was a racer pointing to Akio Toyoda (chairman of Toyota Motor Corporation).

Considering all of these factors, Gibbs ascertained that it was Toyota and its continued support for the team that made the difference over their previous association.

Post Edited By:Ankit Sharma

About the author

Srijan Mandal

Srijan Mandal

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Srijan Mandal is a Senior NASCAR Analyst and Editor at The Sportsrush with a wealth of experience and expertise in the world of motorsports. With several thousand articles under his belt over the years, he has established himself as a leading authority on all things racing. His passion for motorsports started at a young age, and he has dedicated his career to covering the sport in all its forms. He is an expert in various disciplines, including stock car racing, American motorsports, Formula 1, IndyCar, NHRA, MotoGP, WRC, WEC, and several more. But Srijan's love for racing goes beyond his writing. He actively competes in professional open-wheel simulation racing, using the number 88 as his racing number. While he mostly participates in GT Endurance classes, he also ventures into Stock Car racing from time to time. In case, you wish to contact Srijan, kindly send an email to him at srijan.mandal@sportsrush.com or just DM him on Twitter.

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