Honeycutt to Pilot Rock Motorsports Pro Late Model
May 31, 2022
NASCAR Cup Series driver Erik Jones will drive Wimmer Motorsports’ Hamke Chevrolet for six races this year beginning with the June 8 Money in the Bank feature event at Berlin Raceway in Marne, Michigan.
After its debut at Berlin, Jones will drive the No. 4 Erik Jones Foundation Wimmer Motorsports Super Late Model June 19 at The Milwaukee Mile in West Allis, Wisconsin, June 30 at State Park Speedway in Wausau, Wisconsin, July 30 at Lucas Oil Indianapolis Raceway Park and Aug. 2 at Wisconsin International Raceway in Kaukauna before bookending the year by returning to Berlin on Aug. 10 for the Battle at Berlin.
“I’ve been wanting to get back in a Super on a more regular basis for a few years now,” Jones said. “With the way the Cup schedule is now, it’s mostly two-day shows, so it lets me get more seat time in a Super.”
Jones’ relationship with Wimmer Motorsports owner Chris Wimmer developed when Wimmer lived in North Carolina and was the crew chief for Harrison Burton during much of his Super Late Model career. Wimmer and Jones have always talked about working together, and finally all the pieces have fallen into place.
“I’ve known Chris for a long time now and we talked a bit last year about doing some racing together,” said Jones, who has won 18 races across NASCAR’s top-three national touring series – Cup (two), Xfinity (nine) and Camping World Truck (seven). “Talking with Wimmer Motorsports, the schedule just really lined up for us to be able to do some races together.”
Jones and the Wimmer Motorsports team will have their work cut out for them. The Money in the Bank is only a week away and its entry list is stacked with high powered names, including Jones’ fellow NASCAR Cup Series driver William Byron, along with such Late Model stalwarts as Ty Majeski, Sammy Smith and Bubba Pollard.
“Looking over the field and keeping an eye on the Berlin Raceway Facebook page, it will definitely be an impressive field of cars,” Wimmer said. “With Erik’s experience and the feedback I know he can give me and the team, I have confidence we’ll be able to go out and compete well against the best of the best.”
A native of Byron, Michigan, Jones always relishes the opportunity to race in his home state. As such, he’s no stranger to Berlin Raceway. Jones picked up back-to-back wins with the CRA Super Series at Berlin in 2015 and 2016.
“Berlin has always been one of my favorite tracks,” said Jones, whose hometown of Byron is located about 115 miles east of the track. “It’s relatively close to home for me and the racing there is some of the most competitive in the country. I love how it wears out tires and just the challenge of getting your car good there.
“The Money in the Bank race has been growing since it started. When I go run Super Late Model races, I want to run against the best guys in the country, and this race will be no exception. The locals are always tough, but I can’t wait to see what national names show up, too.”
Before securing his place in the ultra-competitive NASCAR Cup Series, Jones was proving his worth in Late Model stock cars at rough-and-tumble bullrings across the United States. Jones emerged victorious against regional track champions and even interloping NASCAR Cup Series drivers who returned to their short-track roots.
“I’ve always thought that Erik is a talented driver,” Wimmer said. “We got to become friends when I lived down south and there has always been talk of us trying to team up for some races and it’s panning out this year. Anytime you can have someone of his caliber behind the wheel of your car, it’s an exciting opportunity to not only compete for wins, but learn a lot, as well.”
At age 14 with only a year of Late Model racing experience, Jones became the youngest winner in ASA Late Model history when he won the 2010 Bob Cross Memorial 100 in Birch Run, Michigan. Perhaps his most notable Late Model win was his victory in the 2012 Snowball Derby in Pensacola, Florida, when a 16-year-old Jones beat NASCAR superstar Kyle Busch. Proving the win was not a fluke, Jones came back and won the 2013 Snowball Derby. Other notable victories include three straight Winchester 400 triumphs (2013, 2014 and 2015) on the treacherous half-mile, high-banked oval in Indiana, and a 2014 win in the prestigious Howie Lettow Memorial 150 at The Milwaukee Mile. In fact, Jones earned the 2015 Super Late Model Triple Crown by scoring victories in the Battle of Berlin 251 and the Redbud 300 at Indiana’s Anderson Speedway before capturing his third Winchester 400 title.
-Wimmer Motorsports Press Release