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Eric McClure back in TriStar's No. 14

January 09, 2013, Staff report, NASCAR.com

Eric McClure back in TriStar's No. 14
Veteran driver poised to make 200th career Nationwide start

Eric McClure will return as driver of the No. 14 Toyota in the NASCAR Nationwide Series next season for TriStar Motorsports.

The Mooresville, N.C., based team and the driver announced the continuation of their partnership Wednesday, while confirming that Reynolds and Hefty would return to sponsor McClure for its seventh consecutive season.

McClure, who has yet to record a top-10 finish in the series, is scheduled to make his 200th career Nationwide start in the season-opening Drive4COPD 300 on Feb. 23 at Daytona International Speedway. McClure joined the Mark Smith-owned TriStar organization in 2011.

Last season, the Chilhowie, Va., native missed five races while recovering from serious injuries suffered in a multicar crash at Talladega Superspeedway in May. After returning to competition the following month at Road America, he completed the rest of the season without a failure to finish, rallying to a career-best finish of 16th place in the Nationwide points.

"We have had a great relationship with Mark and his family the past two seasons so it made the most sense to return to the organization for the upcoming season," McClure said. "We made great strides in our performances the past two seasons and although the 2012 season was an up-and-down year for me personally, we stuck together as a team and were able to end the 2012 season on a high note.

"I look forward to what the 2013 season has in store for me."

Veteran crew chief Wes Ward will also return to TriStar for his second straight season calling the shots for McClure.