One of the most promising young stars in NASCAR, Ryan Blaney returns for his fourth season with Team Penske in 2015. Blaney will once again run a limited NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS) schedule for the team this season as he looks to build upon the development and success he experienced in 2014. As he grows his Sprint Cup Series resume with a great opportunity in an iconic ride with Team Penske technical partner, Wood Brothers Racing, Blaney will also compete in select NXS events behind the wheel of the car he helped guide to the team’s second Owners’ Championship for Roger Penske last season – the No. 22 Discount Tire/Hertz Ford Mustang.
With 10 starts last season in the No. 22 Ford, Blaney proved he could race with NASCAR’s best as he earned his second Xfinity Series victory after leading seven laps and battling Kyle Busch to the checkered flag at Bristol Motor Speedway. Blaney also earned his first career series pole at Iowa Speedway, edging out Sam Hornish Jr. During the course of Blaney’s 2014 campaign, he scored nine top-10 finishes in the Discount Tire/Hertz Ford Mustang and helped the No. 22 team score solid points that eventually led to the 2014 Owners’ title for Team Penske.
Blaney’s other four starts for Team Penske came in the No. 12 Snap-on/Western Star Trucks Ford Mustang. A team that raced only part time and was led by new No. 22 team crew chief Greg Erwin, was comprised mostly of shop-based teammates and some members of the Team Penske test team. This underrated group never finished out side of the top five in its limited starts last season. Among Blaney’s four starts, he successfully ran the No. 12 Mustang to four top-five results.
Along with his races in the Xfinity Series, Blaney also competed full time for hisTeam Penske teammate Brad Keselowski in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS). Piloting the No. 29 Cooper Standard Ford F-150, Blaney earned his third career series win at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in Bowmanville, Ontario along with pole-winning efforts at Michigan International Speedway and Las Vegas Motor Speedway. He also produced 12 top-five and 17 top-10 finishes during the 22-race schedule. As a result of his strong performance, Blaney finished second in the Camping World Truck Series championship standings and won Most Popular Driver in the series.
In just three Xfinity Series races with Team Penske in 2013, Blaney scored his first career victory at Kentucky Speedway after leading 96 of 200 laps. Blaney also scored three top-10 finishes and one top-five result in just three starts. In 2012, Blaney made seven Xfinity Series starts with Team Penske, recording five top-10 finishes and posted a runner-up finish at Texas Motor Speedway. He also competed in six Xfinity Series races for Tommy Baldwin Racing, adding another two top-10 finishes to his resume.
Blaney also proved his versatility behind the wheel in 2012 by competing in the Camping World Truck Series and the NASCAR K&N Pro Series. Blaney raced in nine NCWTS races for Brad Keselowski Racing and he recorded a victory at Iowa while posting top-10 results in five races. The young Blaney lived up to the family name in the K&N Pro Series as he posted two runner-up finishes in just five races competing in his father Dave Blaney’s DB Racing entry.
With a strong pedigree in racing, it was clear from an early age that Ryan Blaney had a bright career ahead of him on the track.
Blaney was a multi-time winner in Bandalero cars at Concord Motor Sports Park and Young Guns Winter-Heat Points Champion. In Quarter Midgets, Blaney won over 100 races in three classes and won multiple class and series titles, including the 2009 Eastern Grand National Championship in the Heavy AA Series, the 2009 Eastern Grand A-Main Qualifier in World Formula and Junior Half, 2008 Eastern Grand A-Main Qualifier in Light AA and was the 2007 World Formula Gasoline Alley National Champion.
As a junior developmental racer, Blaney won more than 25 races in Legend Series Cars, was the 2007 Young Lions Winter Heat Point Champion and Lowe’s Motor Speedway Summer Shootout Winner in Young Lions.
In his debut Late Model season in 2008, Blaney produced four top-10 results in six starts. At age 15, Blaney was voted the 2009 PASS South Rookie of the Year and was again series runner-up with 12 top-10 finishes in 14 starts, while he finished third in the overall 2009 PASS National standings.
Blaney also won the 2010 CRA Southern Six-Pack Championship, behind one race victory. He finished second in the 2010 PASS South points standings, as he earned three wins and finished in the top-10 nine times in 13 races.
Blaney also captured the 2011 PASS South Super Late Model Championship, after he won twice and posted six top-five and nine top-10 finishes. In his first start in the ARCA Series, Blaney won the pole position in track-record time at storied Winchester (Ind.) Speedway in June of 2011, and he led 154 of 200 laps before a cut tire led to a sixth-place finish. Later that season, Blaney finished second to eventual series champion Ty Dillon after starting on the outside pole at Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis, as Blaney led 67 of 203 laps.
In 2011, Blaney made a memorable debut in heavier race cars after a stellar developmental career, as he won the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West race in November at Phoenix International Raceway in dominating fashion in only his third K&N Series start. Blaney finished eighth in his K&N debut in April 2011 at Richmond (Va.) International Raceway after qualifying 10th. He finished 17th at Iowa Speedway prior to that, as he started third and ran in the top-five for much of the event.
His experience and success in the NASCAR developmental ranks helped pave the way for him to Team Penske, where he’s made the most of his opportunities since joining the team in 2012.
As he continues to grow as a racer, Blaney has the benefit of the winning and experienced No. 22 Discount Tire/Hertz Ford team behind him. With veteran and winning teammates like Keselowski and Joey Logano to learn from and a championship crew, Blaney will continue to blossom at Team Penske this season. In addition to running the No. 22 Ford Mustang for Team Penske, Blaney will also get a chance behind the wheel of the famed No. 21 Ford Fusion in the Sprint Cup Series for Wood Brother Racing. Blaney will make his debut in the No. 21 in this season’s Daytona 500 on Sunday, February 22.