Hickory Motor Speedway Racer Takes Next Step with Dale Earnhardt - myfoxcarolinas.com

Hickory Motor Speedway Racer Takes Next Step with Dale Earnhardt, Jr.

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Mooresville, NC -

This weekend marks a big career step for Josh Berry, a Tennessee native who has been racing late model cars for Dale Earnhardt, Jr. at Hickory Motor Speedway this year. On Saturday, he will get behind the wheel of the No. 5 Tackle Gear Chevrolet and make his Nationwide Series debut for JR Motorsports at Iowa Speedway.

“It’s hard to believe, but at the same time it’s just really exciting,” said Josh Berry. “We’ve always kind of known that ultimately this would be the goal. You never know if you’re going to get to that point , but obviously to get here to this point, it make a lot of hard work worth it.”

Berry met Earnhardt through an online racing simulator, iRacing.

“I became friends with him,” said Earnhardt. “I’d raced with him online for probably about six years and I just kind of followed what he was doing. I told him that I had a late model and I’d give him a race if he wanted to come race. We’d test him first, if he tested well then we’d race him. If he raced well, then we’d race him again. It was just one race after another.”

Berry proved himself. He took home the track championship at Motor Mile Speedway in Virginia in 2012, which is the only championship for JR Motorsports, Earnhardt’s company, to date. Since that point, Berry has been racing at Hickory Motor Speedway where he has won six races so far this year.

“The Cinderella story for Josh Berry,” said L.W. Miller, director of motorsports, JR Motorsports. “He comes in, races late models for Dale Jr. and gets the opportunity to jump in the Tackle Grab Chevrolet and go out and run in a car that Kevin Harvick’s been racing all year long. How cool is that?”

But Berry is focused on the race, not the pressure that could come for just about anyone in this situation.

“It’s just something you’ve gotta deal with,” Berry said. “Someone in a situation like me that’s been doing this for five years and this is their shot, then that’s what you’ve got to do. I’m just really excited to get to this point and get this weekend going.”

My Fox Carolinas is traveling to Iowa Speedway to witness Josh Berry’s first race in the Nationwide Series. Check back Saturday night at 10 p.m. to relive the experience.

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