Recently reinstated by NASCAR, Noah Gragson is looking to reinvent himself after his suspension. Could he get back on his feet at Kaulig Racing in the Xfinity Series in 2024?
Noah Gragson, who was reinstated by NASCAR last Tuesday, is slowly rebuilding himself. Gragson released a statement on social media, thanking NASCAR and pledging to make the most of his second chance. Gragson was released from Legacy Motor Club on August 10th, requesting to focus on his reinstatement.
— Noah Gragson (@NoahGragson) September 12, 2023
Gragson is still keeping himself fresh for an eventual return to one of NASCAR’s three national series. Last week, Noah was testing a Pinty’s series car at Delaware Speedway. Saturday, he ran a super late model in the American Speed Association (ASA) Glass City 200 at Toledo, the first since his suspension. Jesse Love won the race, and Gragson finished eleventh, outrunning another NASCAR competitor Ty Majeski.
Gragson is also believed to run the APC Great Canadian 200 and Pinty’s Series Fall Brawl next weekend. All of this seems to be Noah’s way of building his way back to racing full-time. He needs to show the sport and the fans that he can still compete and win races.
What are the rumors?
On the most recent episode of “Door Bumper Clear”, a podcast created by Dirty Mo Media, that shares commentary from spotters Brett Griffin, TJ Majors, and Freddie Kraft. Episode #308 had guest Matt Weaver, who is a prominent motorsports journalist covering local short-track racing up to the Cup Series. Starting at the 30-minute mark, the topic of Noah Gragson’s reinstatement was brought up, and the ensuing conversation was had.
Weaver brought up the importance of a proper fit, team-wise, for Noah. TJ Majors then said “So he and Chris Rice are gonna get along real well” not so subtly hinting that Gragson might going to Kaulig Racing in 2024. Weaver brought up Chris Rice’s great attitude of “We are gonna have a good time, but we are gonna get to work on Saturdays and Sundays”.
Chris Rice, the president of Kaulig Racing, is a fan favorite. He is always telling his fans to smile in videos and posts on social media. But just as he is fun-loving, he is pushing his team towards excellence.
I hope everyone is smiling today like how everyone at @KauligRacing makes me smile everyday!
More than 2/3 through the 2023 season and im so proud of the effort the men and women keep putting in. One big family! 😃 pic.twitter.com/SKeBcLYJ7B
— Chris Rice (@C_Rice1) August 31, 2023
Kaulig Racing and Noah Gragson:
Gragson and Kaulig Racing have a history together. In 2022, Noah ran ten races for the organization. He started his tenure in the Cup Series with the first race at Atlanta. Gragson and Kaulig recorded a highest finish of eighteenth at Kansas. He was originally planned to run fourteen races for Kaulig Racing, but he was tapped to substitute for Alex Bowman. Bowman received a concussion in a wreck at Texas, where Gragson ran his last Cup Series race for Kaulig.
Recently, Kaulig announced a new driver for their #31 Chevrolet, Daniel Hemric. Hemric is currently running in the Xfinity Series for Kauligfull-time and is sixth in the playoff standings. Hemric competed previously in the Cup Series for Richard Childress Racing back in 2019. He also shared the #16 Chevrolet with Gragson in 2022, running eight races. He recorded a best finish of ninth at Fontana.
— NASCAR (@NASCAR) September 15, 2023
While the #16 Cup car has not been announced or claimed, Gragson has thirty-nine starts in the Cup Series. He is the most talented choice for that, besides resigning AJ Allmendinger for another year. I believe Gragson will return to the Xfinity Series.
Driving in the Xfinity Series in 2022, Gragson was having fun and winning races. The fun-loving Gragson was lost when he got to the Cup Series. I think Gragson wants to return to his winning ways and get another shot at the Xfinity Series title in 2024. If Gragson wants to remake himself, he needs to have another 2022 season.
Teams love winners and Noah is a winner. It will take some time to rebuild his name, but I am confident he will return soon.
NASCAR’s Xfinity and Cup Series are heading to Texas Motor Speedway this weekend. Racing begins on Saturday, September 23rd.