DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — In January, Joe Gibbs became the first person to be inducted into both the Pro Football Hall of Fame and the NASCAR Hall of Fame. The former NFL head coach, who has built up a powerhouse race team, is coming off the most successful year of his NASCAR career, but also the most challenging of his life.
On Jan. 11, 2019, his son J.D. Gibbs, passed away just short of his 50th birthday from a degenerative neurological disease, and the NASCAR season began just weeks later with the Daytona 500.
In a storybook finish, the Joe Gibbs Racing drivers took the top three spots in that race, with Denny Hamlin taking the checkered flag.
The JGR team honored the memory of J.D. all season, and went on to win more than half the races in 2019. The season was capped-off with Coach Gibbs having three of the four drivers in the Championship Four, and then winning his fifth NASCAR Cup Championship as Kyle Busch took home his second Cup title.
It would be tough to top a season like that, but Coach Gibbs and his team are eager to see if they can — starting with Sunday’s 62nd running of the Daytona 500.