It has been a very busy day for NASCAR and some of their racing teams. Proving that Silly Season is never really over, Kaulig Racing has announced some major moves among it’s Cup and Xfinity Series teams.
Earlier in the week, it was announced that due to a fracture and torn ligaments in his right ankle, Cody aware will not race the number 51 Rick Ware Racing car on The Royal. JJ Yeley will be doing the driving for the race.
Hendrick Motorsports announced that playoff driver Alex Bowman will be out of the number 48 car for a second week after being diagnosed with a concussion as the result of a crash at Texas Motor Speedway. Noah Gragson will once again be sitting in for Bowman.
Hendricks Motorsports president and general manager Jeff Andrews spoke on Alex Bowman saying, Alex’s health is our first priority. We’re focused on supporting his recovery and seeing him back in his race car when the time is right. Alex has a long career ahead of him, so we will invest the necessary time and take our guidance from medical experts. We’re putting no pressure on him to return before he’s 100% ready.”
One of the 12 remaining playoff drivers, Bowman currently sits in 12th place 54 points behind going into this weekend’s elimination race where four drivers will be eliminated from the playoffs. After two of the three races in this round, Bowman is sure to be one of the four drivers out of the playoffs. Austin Cindric, William. Byron, and Christopher are also currently below the cut line and in danger of being eliminated from the playoffs.
Camping World Truck Series driver Hailie Deegan used social media to announce that she will be making her Xfinity Series debut at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on October 15 with the Ss Green Light Racing number 07 car.
The 21 year old driver currently drives the number one truck for David Gilliland Racing. Saying the she wanted to make her Xfinity debut on a mile and a half track where she feels most comfortable, Deegan admits that she currently has no plans in place for the 2023 racing season. In her second full time year as a driver in the Truck Series, Deegan finished the Talladega race in a career best sixth place.
In a major press conference on Wednesday, Kaulig revealed their plans for the 2023 season that includes a return to full time Cup Series racing for AJ Allmendinger where he will be in a very familiar number driving the number 16 car. Justin Haley will continue to drive the number 31 car for Kaulig.
This season Kaulig has used their number 16 car to give multiple drivers time in the car that included Allmendinger and Noah Gragson. Gragson has been signed to drive the number 42 car full time for Petty GMS in 2023.
Allmendinger has spent the 2022 season as a full time driver in the Xfinity Series driving the number 16 car for Kaulig where he has won the regular season championship and after the win last weekend in Talladega has secured a sept in the next round of the playoffs.
With the Xfinity Series Kaulig Racing number 16 car being vacated, Camping World Truck Series driver Chandler Smith will be taking over the driving duties next season. Smith currently drives the Kyle Busch Motorsports number 18 truck and leads the points standings in the playoffs but sits in second behind Ty Majeski who won the race at Bristol Motor Speedway and is almost surely assured a spot in the final at Phoenix for a run at the championship.
As the 2022 racing season winds down to the Championship race at Phoenix, there is plenty more Silly Season news waiting in the wings including some big announcements fro Joe Gibbs Racing and Kyle Busch Motorsports.