Gragson to replace Sadler at JRM

Image by Nigel Kinrade/LAT

Gragson to replace Sadler at JRM

NASCAR

Gragson to replace Sadler at JRM

JR Motorsports has tabbed Noah Gragson as the next driver of the No. 1 Chevrolet as a replacement for the retiring Elliott Sadler. The championship-winning Xfinity Series organization announced the move Tuesday morning. It is a multiyear deal.

Gragson, 20, will move up from the Camping World Truck Series where he is a current full-time playoff contender for Kyle Busch Motorsports. In the midst of his second full season in the series, Gragson has two career wins and eight poles.

“Noah’s proven himself quite a competitor over the last two seasons in the Truck Series,” said Kelley Earnhardt Miller, general manager of JR Motorsports. “He’s also impressed during a handful of races in the Xfinity Series, and a lot of folks have taken notice. He brings the talent, energy, and enthusiasm we’re looking for, and we’re glad to have him on board. With Noah’s addition, JRM has struck a healthy balance of youth and experience as we plan for the team’s future.”

Sponsorship and crew were not announced for Gragson.

Gragson made his NASCAR national series debut in 2016 at Phoenix in the Truck Series. Earlier this year Gragson competed in three Xfinity Series races with Joe Gibbs finishing second at Richmond, fourth at Talladega and seventh at Dover. Between those three races, Gragson led 10 laps.

“Having the opportunity to drive for JRM and the No. 1 team next year is a dream come true,” Gragson said. “I’d like to personally thank Dale Jr., Kelley, Chevrolet and everyone at JRM for allowing me to compete for a championship in the NASCAR Xfinity Series. I’d also like to thank my sponsors, my management team and my family because none of this would be possible if it wasn’t for their support along the way.

“It will be an honor to follow in Elliott Sadler’s footsteps, and I’m thrilled to be joining such a successful race team. Elliott and Dale Jr. have done so much for the sport over the years, and I hope I can do my part to help take it to the next level. Overall, I’m excited, humbled and extremely appreciative for everyone helping this dream come to fruition.”

Sadler announced last month he was retiring from full-time competition to spend more time with his family with a focus on his children’s activities. Sadler has been competing in NASCAR since 1995 with 17 career wins, to date, across the three national series.

After the first race of the Xfinity Series playoffs last weekend at Richmond, Sadler is fifth on the playoff grid.

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