Lofton Has Successful Return To ESR, Finishes 15th in Kentucky

Sparta, KY. – Justin Lofton’s excitement surrounding his return to Eddie Sharp Racing (ESR) was evident through his two-day stint at Kentucky Speedway. Following Friday’s UNOH225, his excitement grew even more. After challenging within the top-10, Lofton and the No. 46 ESR team ended the night with a solid 15th place showing. Chase Mattioli Racing (CMR) and have entered into a sponsorship alliance with Justin for the balance of the 2011 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season.

“We had a great return run with ESR. I am happy. Dan (Bormann, crew chief) did a great job in his first race. We ran up front, and laid the ground work to build on,” Lofton said. “I can’t thank Eddie (Sharp, team owner), Dan, and all of the guys on the Toyota enough for all of their hard work. We had a great truck.”

Kentucky’s race marked Lofton’s first with ESR since the ARCA Racing Series season finale in Rockingham in 2009, which left them celebrating the series championship. Despite the amount of time in between their working relationship, it was obvious as early as the first practice session that the chemistry was still there, as the team laid down a 14th place showing in the No. 46 Toyota Tundra on Wednesday.
American Muscle

On Thursday, the team focused on the handling of the machine as Lofton battled the abrasive bumps around the 1.5-mile track. After dialing it in, he hit the track for two laps of qualifying, grabbing the 17th starting spot for the 150-lap race.

Once the green flag fell on Thursday night, Lofton promptly radioed his crew telling them, “We are good guys, we are good.” Happy with the handling of his Toyota, the 25-year-old settled in for a fun night of racing.

After playing the consistency card for the first part of the race, Lofton mixed it up following a pit stop on lap 60. With four fresh tires bolted on to his green and white Toyota, Lofton maneuvered his way into the top-10 following a restart. Within 15 laps, he had worked his way into seventh.

As Lofton picked up positions, Bormann plotted his calls in the pits for the final stretch to the finish. On lap 121 of the 150-lap race, Bormann called Lofton down pit road for his scheduled final pit stop. The team jumped into action, changing out the right side tires and adding fuel.

Unfortunately, eight laps later, Lofton made a hard turn off of turn 4 back on to pit road. Spotter David Green made the call, informing the team that the truck appeared to have a blown tire. The team got up on the wall, and changed out the left sides.

Back on track, Lofton thanked his team over the radio for their hard work through the night and despite the drop on the scoring pylon, sounded just as excited as he did on lap one of the event.

Two caution flags slowed the race in the final laps, but Lofton avoided any trouble and ended the night in the 15th position in his debut behind the wheel of the No. 46 Toyota.

“I was having a blast out there. It brought back a lot of old memories having Dan and Eddie on the radio again. We work so well together. The most important thing is that people knew we were here tonight. We ran up front and had a great run. We’re going to keep building, that’s for sure,” Lofton said.

Lofton, Bormann, and the entire No. 46 Toyota team will now head to Iowa Speedway for next Saturday’s Coca-Cola 200.

Joining on the No. 46 Toyota will be Anthem College Online and Grand Canyon University.

Anthem College Online ( provides associate and bachelor degrees in healthcare, business, accounting, paralegal and criminal justice, as well as a diploma in medical office administration. Online students have 24/7 access to their programs and the flexibility to decide when and from where to log in for classes and complete assignments. They can also access live lecture series and discussion groups, individual tutoring and personalized career services.

Founded in 1949, Grand Canyon ( is an Arizona-based, private Christian university that offers online and campus-based bachelors, masters and doctoral degree programs in business, education, nursing and health sciences, liberal arts, and fine arts and production. GCU’s flexibility and expertise appeals equally well to both traditional undergraduate students, as well as working professionals, and the benefits they provide for our active and former military students is second to none.

The No. 46 will also feature sponsor support from Advance Payment Services (, University’s WHUR 96.3 FM ( and Papillon & Moyer Construction (

About Justin Lofton

A native of Westmoreland, California, Justin Lofton raced a variety of machines in numerous divisions enroute to the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. He started early, at the age of 11, racing downhill mountain bikes before transitioning to the bumpy desert terrain as he raced off-road machines. Eventually, he opted to make the move to stockcars. He honed his skills behind the wheel of a late model, winning at one of the country’s most beloved and historic bullrings, the Toyota Speedway at Irwindale. Lofton then moved on to the K&N Pro Series West where he stayed for two years, before making the jump to ARCA Racing Series competition in 2008 when he joined Eddie Sharp Racing. After just three months and eight races in ARCA, Lofton scored the outside pole at Michigan International Speedway, followed by his first series win. Through the season he scored three top-five finishes and five top-10s. And that was just the beginning. 2009 was a stellar season for Lofton, as he dominated the series enroute to the championship. He led the series with 15 top-five and 19 top-10 finishes. He showcased his diversity behind the wheel, earning six checkered flags with race wins spanning superspeedways to short tracks (Talladega, Berlin, Pocono, Chicagoland, Toledo, and Salem). He also led a whopping 1,005 laps spanning 15 races. In 2010, Lofton moved to NASCAR, competing full-time in the Camping World Truck Series. Through the season he earned a best finish of third with four top-five and eight top-10 finishes. After the first nine events in 2011, Lofton rejoined Eddie Sharp Racing as the team looks to recapture its 2009 success.

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