NASCAR

Ross Chastain joins Chip Ganassi Racing for NASCAR Cup Series campaign in 2021

CONCORD, N.C. – Chip Ganassi Racing announced today that Ross Chastain will pilot the organization’s No. 42 entry in the NASCAR Cup Series beginning in the 2021 season.

Chastain, a CGR development driver since 2018, is currently competing full-time in the NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS), where he qualified for the playoffs for a second time following a runner-up finish at Bristol Motor Speedway over the weekend.

“I can’t thank Chip enough for this opportunity, Chastain said. “The faith he and the organization showed me back in 2018 was a real turning point in my career, and I am extremely happy for the chance to join the team again especially with all the great guys they have on the 42 and to be able to team with a champion like Kurt Busch.

For the driver known by many as “The People’s Champion” because of hard driving on the track and his humble manner and likability off the track, this will be his first time racing for CGR in the NCS, but not his first time competing as a member of the organization.

Chastain first competed for CGR in 2018, behind the wheel of the No. 42 Chevrolet in the NXS. In the three races Chastain ran for the team that year, he earned the pole award at Darlington, a win at Las Vegas, and a runner-up finish at Richmond, which helped him earn a spot in the NXS playoffs.

“Ross has been a part of this organization for a few years now, and I am happy to announce him as our driver for the No. 42 team, CGR owner Chip Ganassi said. “In three races with our organization in 2018 and watching ever since, he showed me and everyone else that he is a tenacious driver who wants to win.

“We believe that Ross will give our team the opportunity to be competitive each week and our sponsors someone to build a program around. Additionally, his racing background has him well-suited to make the move to the Cup Series.”

Chastain was set to race full-time for CGR in the NXS in 2019, before unforeseen circumstances kept the team from competition. Undeterred by the setback, Chastain raced a stellar full season with the NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoor Truck Series (NGROTS) in 2019, winning three races and finishing the year runner-up in the driver standings.

Additionally, Chastain competed in the 2020 Daytona 500 and Coca-Cola 600 with technical assistance from CGR.

“Racing in the Cup Series with a serious contender has always been my goal, and I’m looking forward to joining what is a very strong team,” Chastain said. “I know I have my work cut out for me, but I’m ready to get to work and help bring more success to the organization.”

Chastain began his racing career at the age of 12 at Punta Gorda Speedway in his home state of Florida, racing in both late model stock cars and Fastruck Series events. During his short-track racing career he scored over 50 wins in feature events, including the 2011 World Series of Asphalt at New Smyrna Speedway, winning three of eight events in the series.

Chastain will be the sixth driver to compete full-time for CGR in the No. 42 car and joins a crew that has four playoff appearances in the last five seasons.

— Information from a Chip Ganassi Racing press release was used in this report.

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