At 2:30 ET on August 10, from a press conference in Statesville, North Carolina, another Silly Season domino fell into place. Eight-time Xfinity Series race winner Noah Gragson will be jumping into the NASCAR Cup Series full-time behind the wheel of Petty GMS Motorsports’ No. 42 Chevrolet, replacing Ty Dillon.
Gragson, a Las Vegas native, first ventured into the NASCAR national series with Kyle Busch Motorsports, winning two Camping World Truck Series races between 2017 and 2018 before joining Chevrolet and JR Motorsports in the Xfinity Series. Gragson has raced Xfinity full-time since 2019, finishing a career-high third in the championship last year. He is currently second in Xfinity Series points.
In a part-time Cup Series campaign in 2022 split between Kaulig Racing’s No. 16 and Mary Beard’s No. 62, Gragson has a highest finish of 18th place at Kansas Speedway, although he turned laps in the top-five last week at Michigan International Speedway before being eliminated in a crash.
Gragson is known for his controversial on- and off-track persona and aggressive driving style throughout the lower divisions, and is the first rookie driver confirmed full-time for the 2023 Cup Series field.
Featured image from Pat Vallely