When it was announced in the midst of the 2021 season that JTG Daugherty Racing would be downsizing to one car for 2022, many wondered what would happen to Ryan Preece.
On Thursday, those questions were answered.
Per a press release from Stewart-Haas Racing, The 31-year-old racer from Berlin, Connecticut, will perform simulator work while running a mix of races across each of NASCAR’s top-three touring series – Cup, Xfinity and Camping World Truck. Preece will be a Ford Performance driver in each series, and he will be the default driver if any of SHR’s fulltime drivers are unable to compete due to COVID-19 or any other unforeseen circumstance.
“Ryan is a versatile wheelman with a racer’s mentality who fits extremely well within our culture at Stewart-Haas Racing,” said Greg Zipadelli, vice president of competition, SHR through the release. “Between the amount of testing and development work we’re doing with the NextGen car this year, his added insights and time in the simulator will make us better by allowing us to learn faster. Plus, we’re still dealing with COVID. As much as we all want it to be over, it’s not. We needed a more robust plan in the event COVID sidelines one of our drivers. We have that now with Ryan.”
Preece will run a total of 12 races – two in Cup, three in Xfinity and seven in Truck. His Cup and Xfinity Series races will be in coordination with SHR and its technical alliance partners. His Truck Series starts will come with David Gilliland Racing.
“This is a unique setup, but I feel like it provides me with the best opportunity to win races and contribute to a championship-caliber team while expanding my racing experience,” said Preece through the release, “I’m a racer, and Stewart-Haas Racing is a team built by racers. They measure success by wins. Whether I’m in the simulator, in one of their cars, or in a Ford Mustang or Ford F-150 for another team, I’m here to help SHR and Ford win.”
Preece’s two Cup Series races will be May 1 at Dover (Del.) Motor Speedway and May 29 at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway. His three Xfinity Series races will be April 2 at Richmond (Va.) Raceway, May 28 at Charlotte and June 25 at Nashville (Tenn.) Superspeedway. His seven Truck Series races will be March 4 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, March 19 at Atlanta Motor Speedway, May 6 at Darlington (S.C.) Raceway, May 20 at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth, June 24 at Nashville, July 23 at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway and Sept. 9 at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City.