With Kyle Busch’s free agency ending in a seat at Richard Childress Racing, his NASCAR Truck Series organization – Kyle Busch Motorsports – is set to transition to fielding Chevrolet entries in 2023.
The switch leaves Toyota, one of the series’ most successful manufacturers, with an enormous vacancy heading into next year, as they look to continue the Toyota Racing Development program with a sufficient number of seats in the NASCAR Truck Series.
With that in mind, the presence of David Gilliland Racing in the NASCAR Truck Series is set to undergo dramatic changes, beginning next year, with the organization switching manufacturers – to Toyota – and totally rebranding the team.
The organization previously known as David Gilliland Racing (2021 to present), will now become TRICON Garage beginning next year, as the team looks to bolster its future success in NASCAR’s top-three series, with support from Toyota Racing Development.
“Toyota is pleased to rejoin TRICON with this expanded partnership,” said David Wilson, president, TRD. “We are excited for this new opportunity for our Toyota development drivers and partners to experience TRICON’s success and winning culture. The Truck Series is very important to Toyota, and we know TRICON is going to continue to deliver for us as we begin our 20th season in the series.”
Initially founded in 2018 by David Gilliland and Bo LeMastus, DGR-Crosley had partnered with Toyota for the first two seasons of its tenure in the NASCAR Truck Series, before partnering with Ford Performance for the last three seasons.
“We are thrilled to return to Toyota and compete in the new Toyota Tundra TRD Pro next season,” said TRICON Partner David Gilliland. “I’ve seen Toyota’s dedication to the sport firsthand, and we are excited to partner with them going forward. I’m sure this new partnership is going to help TRICON reach our goals of consistently competing for race wins and championships.”
Just one season after the switch to Ford Performance, Johnny Gray became a co-owner of the organization, which reverted the program’s name back to David Gilliland Racing, the name the team held when running Late Models prior to 2018.
“Our goal in the truck series is to create future racing icons,” said TRICON Partner Johnny Gray. “We’ll know we did our job when several years from now our drivers are racing for Cup championships. As for Garage, what we do is more than just field a race team. We build chassis, we build bodies. We have a transportation company. We are marketers and content creators. We are teachers and mentors. It’s bigger than simply ‘motorsports’ or ‘racing.’ But what it all has in common is that it takes place in our garage. So, TRICON Garage just seemed to encompass what we’re all about.”
Jump ahead to the 2023 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series campaign and the team will be carrying its third different identity in the last six seasons, which will bring a fresh new look to the team, and its driver lineup.
The team will field three full-time entries in the NASCAR Truck Series next season, for drivers Corey Heim, Tanner Gray, and Taylor Gray all competing for the championship in 2023.
Heim, a two-time winner in the NASCAR Truck Series for Kyle Busch Motorsports, will pilot the No. 11 Toyota Tundra TRD Pro. Both Tanner and Taylor Gray will return to their usual truck numbers, with Tanner behind the wheel of the No. 15, and Taylor driving the No. 17.
The team’s fourth entry, the No. 1 Toyota Tundra TRD Pro, will feature a multitude of driers throughout the season on a part-time basis. At the time of the announcement, no pilots for the team’s fourth entry had been confirmed.
JBL, Mobil 1, Safelite AutoGlass, and SiriusXM will join TRICON Garage and their existing partners to sponsor the team’s entries throughout the season. The manufacturer will also continue providing support to Halmar Friesen Racing, Hattori Racing Enterprises, and ThorSport Racing in the NASCAR Truck Series.