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Greg Ives to crew chief Earnhardt in 2015

Dale Earnhardt Jr. laughs before the start of qualifying for the Brickyard 400 auto race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Saturday, July 26, 2014. (AP Photo/AJ Mast)

Dale Earnhardt Jr. laughs before the start of qualifying for the Brickyard 400 auto race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Saturday, July 26, 2014. (AP Photo/AJ Mast)

Greg Ives will return to Hendrick Motorsports next season as crew chief for Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Ives was race engineer for Jimmie Johnson’s record five consecutive championships. He moved to JR Motorsports in 2013 for his first crew chief job, with Regan Smith in the Nationwide Series.

Ives was moved to rookie Chase Elliott’s pit stand this season. He has five Nationwide wins, including three with points leader Elliott.

Hendrick has been on a search for a crew chief for NASCAR’s most popular driver all season. Steve Letarte announced in January he was stepping down at the end of the year to take an analyst position with NBC Sports.

Earnhardt and Letarte opened the season with a Daytona 500 victory. Earnhardt is second in the Sprint Cup standings.

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