NASCAR community celebrates life of Coy Gibbs at JGR service

HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. – The NASCAR community gathered at Joe Gibbs Racing on Wednesday afternoon to celebrate the life of Coy Gibbs.

Gibbs, the 49-year-old vice chairman and chief operating officer of his father’s company, died Nov. 6 just hours after his son, Ty Gibbs, claimed the NASCAR Xfinity Series championship at Phoenix Raceway.

JGR, owned by NASCAR Hall of Famer and Pro Football Hall of Famer Joe Gibbs, hosted the celebration of life for Coy Gibbs at the family’s race shop. Established across the sports world, Gibbs was highly revered through multiple avenues, whether through NASCAR, motocross, football or business.

Among the several hundreds in attendance for Wednesday’s service were current JGR drivers Christopher Bell, Martin Truex Jr. and Denny Hamlin as well as former drivers Kyle Busch, Joey Logano, Aric Almirola, Carl Edwards and Daniel Hemric. Rick Hendrick and Jeff Gordon, owner and vice chairman of Hendrick Motorsports respectively, also attended to offer condolences.

In his opening remarks, Joe Gibbs shared stories about his son that drew both laughs and tears from the crowd. Tales from Coy Gibbs’ family members and childhood friends centered on his merciless sarcasm, tough exterior but tenderhearted and generous nature.

At the 2022 NASCAR Awards held Dec. 1 in Nashville, Tennessee, Ty Gibbs was honored with a standing ovation ahead of his championship speech. Gibbs, who will move to the Cup Series full-time in 2023, shared a video on Dec. 5 of him celebrating his title with his father in a candid moment on pit road at Phoenix.

“I love you Dad,” Gibbs wrote in the Instagram caption. “God blessed me with you in my life. I am thankful for every second I got to spend with you. Thank you for always loving me and having my back through every situation. I am so excited to see you again!”

Hamlin, a Joe Gibbs Racing driver in NASCAR’s national series since 2004, has had close ties to the Gibbs family for years. His No. 11 stems from J.D. Gibbs, Joe Gibbs’ eldest son who died in 2019 at age 49 after battling a degenerative neurological disease and with whom Hamlin was particularly close.

Hamlin, now a co-owner of 23XI Racing, noted Joe Gibbs is back to work but that the family is still hurting.

“Joe is just, he’s a workaholic. And it’s hard to get him to just stop and publicly be vulnerable and emotional because he is just a workhorse,” Hamlin said in Nashville. “And so, I think he took some time to grieve and then he went back to work, and that’s just kind of his M.O., and it’s kind of the way that he did with J.D. as well.

“So I think, it’s a tough time for the family, no doubt about it. I mean, I couldn’t imagine me having two kids, and just … I can’t imagine what they go through. But I’ve certainly felt like I’ve tried to lend as much help as I can. I know that they’re working on some reorganizational stuff there that I’ll be a part of. It’s just, it’s a tough time, but they’ll get through it like they always have.”

Logano, the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series champion and now a two-time title winner, started his NASCAR career with JGR and remains close with people inside the race shop. He reassured Ty Gibbs that help is nearby if wanted or needed.

“I spoke with Ty after the race, and then I got to spend some time with him last night at the champions dinner,” Logano said in Nashville. “Yeah, you don’t know how much to bring it up or not, right, because you don’t want to dwell on it or take away from his championship, either. So you just kind of put your arm around him and say, ‘Hey, we’re here for you. You need something, reach out.'”

In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorials may be made to:

National Christian Foundation, attn: Contributions
11625 Rainwater Drive, Suite 500
Alpharetta, GA 30009
Memo line: Coy Gibbs Memorial Fund #4446234