J. J. Yeley
- Hall of Fame Racing 2008 - present
J. J. Yeley was born in 1976 and has always been a driver who has always done enough to get noticed and someone who has won a lot of events at the lower levels of racing.
Yeley joined the USAC Sprint Car division in 1998 and became the fastest rookie to qualify for the Indy500, at ninth spot.
Although he didn’t win anything in his debut season, he spent it learning the art of driving at that level. 1999 and 2000 went in the same way as he kept trying to make an impact without any concrete outcomes. All that changed in 2001 when he clinched the USAC Sprint Car division.
In 2002, his victory at the USAC Silver Crown Championship meant that Yeley was moving closer than ever to the NASCAR stage and in 2003, his treble at the USAC level meant that he had arrived. Yeley won everything there was to be won at the USAC level as he took the Sprint Car series, the Silver Crown and the Midget titles.
He finally got the opportunity to move to the NASCAR Nationwide Series in 2004 where he drove in 17 races to finish the season in 30th place in the final standings. He was back in the Nationwide series in 2005 with 4 top-five finishes and 12 top-ten finishes that took him to 11th place in the standings. However, that was not the main attraction for Yeley in 2005.
He drove in the NASCAR Sprint Cup series and finished at 56th place. He just drove in 4 races in the Sprint Cup but that acted as a yardstick of his performances.
In 2006, he got his first full season at the Sprint Cup and with 3 top-ten finishes, came in at 29th in the overall standings. For his first season, this was a decent performance although he would be looking to make a better impact in the coming years and in 2007, he went up a bit more.
He posted 4 top-ten finishes that included a second place as well on his way to the 21st spot in the rankings. He also took part in 3 USAC races over the season but without any major results.
In 2008, he will be looking to more improvement and stop being a part of the middle section. Yeley has had enough experience in racing to realise that there is always denser in the middle segments of track positions and would do well to get out of it.