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Christopher Bell was plenty happy to talk about the Richmond Raceway and for a good reason as well. Heading into the 2024 Toyota Owners 400, Joe Gibbs Racing seems like the experts’ favorite team to win, as they have bagged nine of the last sixteen races at the short track. What’s better is that they have 18 victories on the Virginia Oval, which is the highest number for them on any racetrack. 

Though Christopher Bell has not yet won a Cup Series race at Richmond, he still has a near-spotless record. And if recent records could foretell the possible future, this spring race could very well turn Richmond into a “JGR Playhouse” one more time, as Bell excitedly said.

Bell Aims for First Richmond Win in “JGR’s Playhouse”

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To put things into proper context, the #20 has been phenomenal so far this season. With an inaugural victory at Phoenix and two podium finishes, Bell looks like a steady contender for the playoffs. He might not have added his name to the Richmond victory list yet, however, the #20 driver has averaged a commendable finish of 7.7 in his seven starts. This time around, he looks pretty confident in strengthening JGR’s already robust history at the track. 

Bell’s consistent average, as well as the stellar performances this season, seem to have him in a good mood. Kelly Crandall of RACER.com brought to light the optimism on display by the #20 driver. 

According to racer.com, Bell said, “I just like driving for JGR here. Their resume speaks for itself and the cars are super, super fast. This is arguably JGR’s best racetrack, so I just love going to racetracks where I know I’m going to have a shot at it. It feels like this is JGR’s playhouse.” 

USA Today via Reuters

Richmond has indeed turned into JGR’s “playhouse,” but a big part of that moniker coming into play for Coach Gibbs’ gloried organization has been Bell’s recent COTA rival–two-time Cup Series champ, Rowdy Kyle Busch.

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From 2008 to 2022, Kyle Busch registered 6 wins for Joe Gibbs Racing at Richmond. But most impressively from 2009 to 2012, JGR’s former #18 driver claimed back-to-back wins for four spring races straight. The active JGR driver second to Busch’s record at the moment is MTJ with three overall victories at Richmond.

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However, after last week’s COTA incident regarding Bell spinning out former teammate Busch, Rowdy seemed to want to make Bell pay for the “mistakes”. Though both have publicly stated that they have made up, Busch still seemed to reek of bitterness. While Bell has been beaming with confidence, do you think Busch, who has a special affair with the track and now with Bell as well, could ruin JGR’s dominance at Richmond this season?

Read More: NASCAR Hall of Famer Predicts Christopher Bell’s Trip to Richmond Victory Lane Amidst Goodyear’s Phoenix Repeat