FRM announced the moves on November 23 with a press release. The team noted that Todd Gilliland’s crew chief, Seth Barbour, has been promoted to Technical Director. He will oversee “track engineering and car preparation processes.” The search for his replacement is ongoing.
Additionally, FRM announced the hiring of a new crew chief for the No. 34 team. Travis Peterson will take over for the departed Blake Harris after spending five seasons at Roush Fenway Keselowski Racing. He will now focus on guiding the No. 34 team as it tries to return to Victory Lane.
Finally, FRM has promoted Ryan Bergenty, who previously served as the car chief for the No. 34 team. He will take over as Performance Director while overseeing all body and chassis assembly for both entries.
Peterson Has a Degree in Mechanical Engineering From UNC Charlotte
Peterson comes to Front Row Motorsports with extensive experience in NASCAR. He did an internship at Joe Gibbs Racing while earning a degree in Mechanical Engineering, and he gained even more experience while working as a race engineer at both JR Motorsports and Hendrick Motorsports.
Peterson achieved success as an engineer. He celebrated several Xfinity Series wins and a championship. He also helped Dale Earnhardt Jr. capture Cup Series wins at Hendrick Motorsports.
Along with the time working as an engineer, Peterson has some time atop the pit box. He was a replacement crew chief for one race in 2018, and he guided Matt Kenseth to a sixth-place finish at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
Peterson returned to the pit box in 2022 for four races. He worked with Chris Buescher and guided him to a 10th-place finish at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course.
“The past two seasons Front Row Motorsports has seen success and we’re taking the next steps forward,” said Jerry Freeze, General Manager, Front Row Motorsports. “We know that Travis is a person that can immediately come in, take the baton, and continue to move the No. 34 team to the front.
“We also made several changes internally to help with car preparation and engineering for all our race cars and trucks. Our final piece is finding a new leader for the No. 38 team. We’re confident that with these changes that we’ll be even better next season.”
FRM Has More News on the Horizon
The three moves announced prior to Thanksgiving set up Front Row Motorsports for the 2023 Cup Series season. However, there are more moves for the organization to make prior to the trip to Los Angeles for the Busch Light Clash at the LA Memorial Coliseum.
One move, which the team mentioned in its press release, is announcing the new crew chief for the No. 38 team. Barbour has been a key figure atop the pit box for Front Row Motorsports since the 2017 season, and he has worked with a variety of drivers. Now he will take on a new role while FRM brings on a new crew chief.
The other big piece of news focuses on the drivers that will control the No. 34 and No. 38 entries in 2023. Michael McDowell and Todd Gilliland were the drivers during the 2022 season, and the expectation is that they will both return to their respective entries. Though FRM still has to confirm this setup ahead of the Busch Light Clash.