We’re previewing each team competing in the eNASCAR Coca-Cola iRacing Series before the 2021 season.
Owner: NASCAR Xfinity Series team JR Motorsports, co-owned by that Dale Earnhardt Jr. fellow. You may have seen him around on iRacing.
No. 8: Michael Conti
Hometown: Concord, NC
First season: 2011
2020 rank: 3rd
Did anyone really think I was going anywhere? 😂
— MikeConti5 (@MikeConti5) January 27, 2021
No. 88: Brad Davies
Hometown: Charlotte, NC
First season: 2010
2020 rank: 12th
JRM put together an excellent season with its returning drivers, Michael Conti and Brad Davies. The duo put together the first-ever 1-2 team finish in the eNASCAR era when Conti snapped a two-year winless streak by dominating in the Texas playoff race, earning him a spot in the Championship 4.
Conti was a contender week in and week out — something we’ve come to expect from the 2014 champ — while Davies posted consistent rock-solid finishes to end up 12th in the final standings. For Davies, it was his best season since 2011, and he improved his ranking for the fourth consecutive season.
If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Both drivers return to their familiar rides, looking to build on their stellar 2020 season. It’ll be tough for Conti to improve on a third-place-overall season, but we know he’s always hunting for more race wins — not to mention his drive to join Ray Alfalla as the only multi-time champion.
Davies ranks second in most overall starts (behind Alfalla), but hasn’t won a race since 2011. His 117-lap-led performance at Bristol last year showed he’s not only a weekly top-10 fixture, but he still knows how to show the way out front. The series elder’s still seeking his first trip to the playoffs, too, after top-eight contention for much of last year.
Steve’s bold prediction
Don’t sleep on JRM. Michael Conti and Brad Davies are world-class drivers, and I think they’re often overlooked because they’re so darn good at racking up points, even if they’re not winning week in and week out. Conti racked up the fewest incident points of all full-time drivers in 2020 and scored four pole positions. With a huge amount of churn and a massive rookie class, I think Conti’s ability to run up front and avoid trouble is going to pay dividends in 2021. I’m penciling Conti into the Championship 4 already.
I’ll also put it out there: Brad Davies is going to make a return to Victory Lane this season. He’s overdue, and there’s something to be said about his experience in a field full of rookies and youngsters. (Don’t let me down, Brad!)
— JR Motorsports (@JRMotorsports) January 27, 2021