J.D. Gibbs, co-chairman of Joe Gibbs Racing, dies at 49 | NASCAR

J.D. Gibbs, co-chairman of Joe Gibbs Racing, died Friday after an extended battle with a degenerative neurological illness. Gibbs was 49.

Throughout Gibbs’ longtime affiliation with JGR, he additionally served on pit crews and drove in 13 NASCAR races from 1997 to 2002, 5 within the Xfinity Collection and eight within the truck sequence. His finest end was 20th in an Xfinity race at South Boston (Virginia) Speedway in July 1998.

Well being points for Gibbs, the eldest son of Joe Gibbs, first grew to become a priority late in 2014, according to NASCAR.com.

Gibbs’ father first addressed the seriousness of his son’s well being in March 2015, talking to reporters earlier than a Cup race at Martinsville Speedway. “We’ve been coping with this for about six months,” Joe Gibbs stated, “and mainly what the docs say is that they actually don’t know.”

In a statement earlier that week, JGR revealed Gibbs had been receiving therapy for “signs impacting areas of mind perform.” The assertion stated, “Docs consider the problems he has skilled had been triggered by head accidents probably suffered earlier in life, however no particular harm was referenced or recognized.” The Washington Put up famous on the time that Gibbs had been “lively in a variety of sports activities, together with auto racing, mountain biking, snowboarding, soccer and excessive sports activities.” He additionally performed soccer at William & Mary.

Gibbs, whose character made him a favourite within the NASCAR group, knew early on his future wasn’t as a driver.

“If it was simply me, I may very well be a fairly good racer,” he instructed The Washington Put up in 2004, per NASCAR.com. “However then you definitely put 42 different vehicles on the market and that causes some points.”

In 2014, Gibbs displayed that very same humorousness, when he stated, “My dad, he fired me in a pleasant means. He gave me an workplace and stated, ‘Hey, you’re now the president, since you’re a horrible driver.’”

The NASCAR group was fast to react on social media to Gibbs’ passing.

“If you wish to know the way to stay life the correct means and go away a legacy that may final ceaselessly, look no additional than the instance J.D. Gibbs set for all of us,” stated Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR’s chief racing improvement officer.

One driver who was particularly near Gibbs was Denny Hamlin, whose complete NASCAR profession has been with Joe Gibbs Racing. “I’ll at all times be glad about what His household did for mine and the chance he gave me 14 years in the past,” stated Hamlin, 38, who made his first NASCR begin at age 23 in what’s now the Xfinity Collection for JGR.

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