Jeffrey Earnhardt to Run Full-Time for Alpha Prime Racing in 2023

Fresh off their first Xfinity Series season, Alpha Prime Racing has secured the services of a member of one of NASCAR’s royal families for year two. Jeffrey Earnhardt – the grandson of Dale Earnhardt Sr. – has been tapped by Tommy Joe Martins and Caesar Bacarella to pilot their team’s #44 car full time in 2023, with Forever Lawn following Earnhardt as the sponsor.

2022 marked Alpha Prime Racing’s first year of competition after re-branding from Martins Motorsports, which had been competing in NASCAR since 2009. Martins Motorsports didn’t shift to full-time Xfinity Series competition until 2020 with Tommy Joe Martins behind the wheel. After two years with Tommy Joe running full-time, the team rebranded to Alpha Prime Racing in a collaborative effort with Caesar Bacarella, and ran the 2022 season with two full-time cars both fielding several drivers. On the year the team collected two top-10’s, but showed top-10 speed far more often than that.

Jeffrey Earnhardt has been competing in NASCAR to some effect since 2007 when he debuted in the ARCA Series for Dale Earnhardt Incorporated. Since then he has bounced around across all of NASCAR’s top-three series. He has had a few full-time rides along the way – Circle Sport in the Cup Series in 2017, JD Motorsports in the Xfinity Series in 2014 and again in 2021 – but has never really found what could be considered a steady home with a competitive team. Across his career he has five career top-10’s in the Xfinity Series, with two of those coming this past year, including a spectacular second place run at Talladega where he ran the #3 car for Richard Childress Racing in a special one-off tribute to his legendary grandfather.

Image credit: Alpha Prime racing on Twitter

This move marks a shift for Alpha Prime, as rather than fielding several drivers and only competing for owner points, the team is now going to throw significant resources behind one driver and compete for a drivers championship as well. The team is still fielding the #45 car for a rotation of drivers, including at least Ryan Ellis and Sage Karam. This team showed pretty impressive speed at times last year, but a lack of consistency hampered their efforts. It will be interesting to see how APR does with one driver able to accrue significant seat time and build up a solid rapport with the team.

Featured image credit: Alpha Prime Racing on Twitter

Published by Walker Skeeter

Walker is a 4th year climatology PhD candidate at the University of Delaware. Despite being a climate scientist, Walker has been a NASCAR fan for over 20 years! His favorite drivers are Bubba Wallace, Tyler Reddick, and Alex Bowman in cup, and AJ Allmendinger, Tommy Joe Martins, and Ryan Vargas in Xfinity. Outside of racing, he enjoys talking about (and studying) the weather, watching Baltimore sports, and playing video games.

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