Como’s Martins has new racing deal

Published 3:31 pm Thursday, December 26, 2019

By Daniel McFadin

Tommy Joe Martins‘ Martins Motorsports will attempt to compete in the Xfinity Series full-time in 2020, the team announced on Tuesday.

Martins, 33, will be the initial driver of the No. 44 car.

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The native of Como has 57 career Xfinity Series starts. He made 18 combined starts in 2019 for B.J. McLeod and Carl Long.

Long-time sponsor and family friend Rodney Riessen will join Martins Motorsports as a co-owner.

Martins Motorsports hasn’t competed on-track since the 2017 Gander RV & Truck Series season. It last attempted a full NASCAR schedule in 2014 before shutting down mid-season.

“It’s so exciting,” Martins said in a press release. “Extremely nerve wracking but also really exciting. We’ve learned so much over these last few years about this series & the business as a whole. I’ve improved a lot as a driver. Having Rodney [Riessen] as a partner in this thing is a game changer. He’s just as passionate about the success of this team as dad (Craig Martins) & I are.”

The team will have sponsor Diamond Gusset Jeans on the No. 44 car for an undetermined number of races.

Martins would “gladly” get out of the car if a funded driver was available.

“I love driving these cars, but the best thing financially for this race team is to have me as a part-time driver, not a full-time one,” Martins said in the press release. “Right now I just want to focus on starting this year strong, getting us up in the points, and proving to everyone this is a competitive race team. I think everything takes care of itself from that point on.”