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Jennifer Jo Cobb set to become first woman in a NASCAR Cup race since Danica Patrick
AP

Jennifer Jo Cobb set to become first woman in a NASCAR Cup race since Danica Patrick

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Driver Jennifer Jo Cobb gets into her truck during qualifying for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Overton's 225 at Chicagoland Speedway on June 29, 2018, in Joliet, Illinois.

Driver Jennifer Jo Cobb gets into her truck during qualifying for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Overton's 225 at Chicagoland Speedway on June 29, 2018, in Joliet, Illinois. (Matt Sullivan/Getty Images/TNS)

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — After nearly two decades of NASCAR starts, Jennifer Jo Cobb is set to make her debut in the sport’s top series. Rick Ware Racing announced Tuesday that Cobb — a 47-year-old from Kansas City, Kan. — will race the No. 15 Chevrolet at Talladega on April 25.

She will become the first woman to race in the Cup Series since Danica Patrick’s Daytona 500 entry in 2018. Cobb has made more than 200 Truck Series starts and 31 Xfinity Series starts in her NASCAR career, which began in the early-2000s with entries in the sport’s pipeline ARCA series.

Cobb, a full-time Truck driver for her team Jennifer Jo Cobb Racing, will compete at Talladega for RWR with primary sponsorship from plumbing product company Arrowhead Brass and associate sponsorship from her team’s longtime partner Fastener Supply, a Charlotte-based industrial fastener company. Cobb made six Xfinity starts for RWR between 2011 and 2016, but has primarily competed in Truck events over the last 10 years.

“I am so thankful for this opportunity with RWR, and greatly appreciate Arrowhead Brass for coming on board to help make this happen,” Cobb said in a statement. “It’s also exciting to have my longtime sponsor at Fastener Supply to extend their support as well.

“I have a long history with RWR and a lot of respect for this organization. This team has a lot of heart and reminds me a lot of my small team competing against such mammoth organizations.”

Rick Ware Racing fields multiple entries in the Cup Series with different drivers behind the wheel of the Nos. 15, 51, 52 and 53, but no driver has finished higher than 20th for the organization this season. At age 62, Derrike Cope raced the No. 15 at the last superspeedway event, the Daytona 500 in February, but crashed out three laps into the race for a last-place finish.

Cobb will be the oldest driver in the field at Talladega, barring new entries, with two years on series veteran Kevin Harvick, 45. Her Cup debut will also make her one of two women to compete in all three NASCAR national series — Truck, Xfinity and Cup — along with Shawna Robinson, and she will be one of 17 women to race in the top series, the third since 1990.

“Being a female in a male-dominated sport is not an easy task, especially for as long as Jennifer has been competing in NASCAR,” Ware said in a statement. “I hope that she has a successful first NASCAR Cup Series debut and look forward to Arrowhead Brass making their NASCAR sponsorship debut at Talladega as the primary sponsor on Jennifer’s car.”

Cobb added in her remarks: “I am proud of what RWR has accomplished and I want nothing more than to make the team, Arrowhead Brass, and all my sponsors and supporters proud of this effort.”

Photos: Chase Elliott races to first NASCAR Cup championship

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