Jeff Meendering

Crew Chief, No. 00 Ford Mustang
Birth Date: May 21, 1977
Birth Place: Grand Rapids, Michigan
Home Town: Concord, North Carolina
Residence: Concord, North Carolina
Spouse: Ashley
Children: Jeff Jr., Nathan
Being involved in motorsports was inevitable for Jeff Meendering. As a child growing up just outside of Grand Rapids, Michigan, in the small town of Marne, Meendering’s family lived right across the street from Berlin Raceway. His late father Marv and a friend competed at the .4375-mile paved oval, as well as other tracks in the area.

Meendering’s family moved to the heart of NASCAR in North Carolina when he was in sixth grade and his affinity for the sport only grew. When he turned 16, Meendering bought a Street Stock and began competing at Concord Motorsports Park, a half-mile oval north of Charlotte. Not long after that, Meendering went to work for Hendrick Motorsports, where he started out sweeping the floors and emptying trash cans as a junior in high school.

After considerable success in the Street Stock division, Meendering moved up to Late Model stock cars and then Super Late Models. While he ascended the ranks on the track, Meendering did the same off the track as he worked his way up the ladder at Hendrick Motorsports. His responsibilities at his day job continued to increase, eventually helping spur Meendering’s decision to sell his personal racecars in favor of a career outside the driver’s seat and atop the pit box.

Meendering joined Hendrick’s No. 24 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series team working with driver Jeff Gordon in 2001 and was eventually promoted to car chief. While in that role, he served as an interim crew chief during Steve Letarte’s suspension for a rules infraction in 2007. In that span, Gordon earned two top-five and four top-10 finishes. At the end of the season, Meendering left the organization to take over as crew chief for the famed No. 43 Petty Enterprises entry driven by Bobby Labonte. The following season, the team earned two top-10s and 17 top-20s and completed 99 percent of the laps run.

In 2009, Meendering joined Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) as the car chief on the No. 14 team with driver-owner Tony Stewart. During Meendering’s tenure with the team, Stewart won the 2009 All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway along with 15 point-paying races, with the pinnacle moment coming in 2014 when Stewart and the No. 14 clinched 2011 NASCAR Cup Series championship.

After the 2014 season, Meendering moved to Joe Gibbs Racing, where he served as car chief on the No. 20 NASCAR Cup Series entry driven by Matt Kenseth. Meendering’s career path led him back to SHR at the end of the 2016 season to help start the organization’s NASCAR XFINITY Series team as crew chief for the No. 00 Haas Automation Ford Mustang driven by Cole Custer.

The first-year pairing at the first-year team produced impressive results. Meendering led the team into the NASCAR Playoffs, where Custer fell just four points shy of advancing into the Championship 4 at Homestead. The team clinched its playoff spot because of its strength on intermediate tracks as Custer scored more points (422) on 1.5-mile tracks than any other driver.

Emphasizing this point was Custer’s dominant victory in the season-ending Ford EcoBoost 300 at the 1.5-mile Homestead-Miami Speedway. Custer led three times for a race-high 182 laps to set a record for the most laps led in a single XFINITY Series race at Homestead. He earned a perfect driver rating (150.0) by sweeping both stages of the race and taking the victory by a whopping 15.405 seconds. The win capped a season that included seven top-five and 19 top-10 finishes with 301 laps led.

Meendering resides in Concord, North Carolina, with his wife Ashley and their two sons Jeff Jr. and Nathan.