Haley to Truck Series for 2017

NASCAR

2016 NASCAR K&N Pro Series East champion Justin Haley is moving into the Camping World Truck Series next season, driving the No. 24 GMS Racing Chevrolet. (Photo: Getty Images)

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2016 NASCAR K&N Pro Series East champion Justin Haley is moving into the Camping World Truck Series next season, driving the No. 24 GMS Racing Chevrolet.

Haley's rookie season will begin with the third race of the year, April 1 at Martinsville Speedway, under the direction of crew chief Kevin Bellicourt.

"The past few years in K&N has been an effort to get to the next step in my career and I don’t think we could have done any better than joining GMS," Haley said. "Everyone knows what they’ve accomplished over the last year, and it’s that type of consistency and drive that every driver wants to see when making a decision like this. Kevin Bellicourt coming on for 2017 is one of the most exciting parts of this deal. He’s had a lot of success with young drivers and I can’t wait to see what we’re able to accomplish."

Haley, a native of Indiana, began his career in 2008 at the age of nine. He's earned wins in quarter-midgets, micro sprints, late models, the ARCA Racing Series and - most recently - the K&N Pro Series East, one of NASCAR's top developmental tours. In 2016, he notched wins at Greenville-Pickens Speedway and Columbus Motor Speedway. Haley had only one finish outside the top five and no result worse than ninth in claiming the title.

Bellicourt joins GMS after completing his first year as a NCWTS crew chief with ThorSport Racing and driver Ben Rhodes, earning two top fives and five top-10 finishes. He also earned the 2015 NKNPSE championship with driver William Byron.

"There are a lot of great things happening at GMS Racing," said Bellicourt. "It’s one thing to watch the progress and success from a distance, but to now be part of what's coming together is a completely different experience. Justin is a great driver who's had a lot of success fast, but he's handled it like a driver who's been doing this for years."

Bellicourt and Haley join a GMS Racing team that garnered six wins with four different drivers last season, as well as the Truck Series championship with veteran driver Johnny Sauter. Haley will unite with Sauter and 17-year-old Kaz Grala, who returns to the team after competing in nine NCWTS races in 2016. Haley and Grala will both compete for Sunoco Rookie of the Year honors in 2017.

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