Race Weekend Central

2020 NASCAR Team Reviews: Gaunt Brothers Racing

How was 2020 different from any other Cup Series season Gaunt Brothers Racing has competed in since 2017? The No. 96 Toyota Camry was in the field for nearly every race…nearly.

And despite missing the 2020 Daytona 500 in a devastating wreck with Ryan Blaney in the famous tri-oval during one of two qualifying 150-milers, GBR made their rounds on the circuit as a full-time team for the first time in their brief, three-year history in the Cup Series.

Daniel Suarez and Marty Gaunt, owner of GBR, were optimistic about the upcoming season when Suarez was announced as the driver – and rightfully so after the Canadian-based team secured the international champion. Suarez came from a one-season run with Stewart-Haas Racing after spending time with Joe Gibbs Racing in the No. 19 Arris Toyota. GBR brought in major sponsorship with Suarez – Coca-Cola and CommScope, with other sponsors on the hood during the season: Team USA and Toyota.

Suarez concluded his last race with GBR with a 31st place finish in Phoenix, leaving GBR to search for another driver that can help them secure their first win.

Despite that, GBR brought home three top-20 finishes, with two 18th place finishes in the season at Bristol and Kansas. Suarez’ season was certainly highlighted at the two superspeedways with two commendable performances – he worked his way to the front of the pack at the fan-limited Coke Zero Sugar 400 in August, leading for 19 laps – the first for the team. Earlier in the race, Suarez ran steady in the top-15 for the first several laps of stage one. At Talladega Superspeedway in October, Suarez championed a highest-running position of second before a disappointing 13-car accident ended the day for Suarez and the Team USA Toyota. Suarez’s DNF was just the second and last of his season.

Considering GBR competed in their first full-time season in 2020, it’s comparing their average finishing position is unjustifiable. However, Suarez gained an average finish of 26.6 by the end of the season.

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