Ryan Truex Signs with RPM
By: Dustin Long - @dustinlong on June 2, 2013 | 9:18 A.M. EST
The 21-year-old Truex has run 35 Nationwide races the past three seasons for a variety of teams, including Michael Waltrip Racing and Joe Gibbs Racing. (Photo: Getty Images)
Truex joins Corey LaJoie, who also signed a development deal. Sponsorship will determine their programs, Sammy Johns, RPM’s competition director, told Motor Racing Network.
The 21-year-old Truex has run 35 Nationwide races the past three seasons for a variety of teams, including Michael Waltrip Racing and Joe Gibbs Racing. He had two top-five finishes and nine top 10s. He’s run three Camping World Truck Series races, including Daytona this season. He placed 28th in that race, his only start in any of NASCAR’s national series this season.
Truex, the brother of Martin Truex Jr., was scheduled to make his NASCAR Sprint Cup debut at Richmond but had to miss that after breaking his collarbone in two places on Easter.
Ryan Truex had hinted in recent days on Twitter that he’d been hired. He tweeted Saturday that “I will say that my future is finally clear and secure.’’
He’ll join LaJoie, the son of two-time Nationwide champion Randy LaJoie. Corey LaJoie won five of 14 K&N Pro Series East races last season. Funding has limited him to three series races this season.
Johns said Truex and LaJoie are a good combination.
“They’re both really good talents,’’ Johns said. “Any time they’ve gotten the opportunity to show it, they’ve run really well.’’
The changes are part of the growth Richard Petty Motorsports is seeking to make.
“I think we’re changing as a company,’’ Johns said. “There have been a couple of years where we were just trying to keep the doors open. We’ve got a lot better footing on that. Our Cup programs are starting to run better and we’re starting to look like we can possibly be Chase contenders.
“And the Nationwide program coming on board last year, I can’t say enough about Michael Annett and the job he did last year. We really had high hopes this year and had a real big setback at Daytona with him getting hurt. We finally got him back in the car (last week) and we’re starting to build back on that again. That program last year was really a bright spot for us and showed us that we could take a young man that is a really good race car driver and go do some good things with him and help build our program.’’
Now they want to do the same for Truex and LaJoie. Richard Petty Motorsports just needs to find the money to make it happen.