Petty GMS Motorsports to field two cars in 2022
CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Petty GMS Motorsports will be the new name for the merged operation between GMS and Richard Petty Motorsports, the team announced Tuesday at the NASCAR Hall of Fame.
The team’s two drivers will be Ty Dillon and Erik Jones. Their crew chief pairings will not change.
The team will be based at GMS Racing’s current multi-building complex in Statesville, N.C.
Richard Petty will serve as chairman of the new organization that will be owned by Maury Gallagher.
Dillon will drive the No. 42 car (the team had announced he would drive the No. 94 before the deal). Jones will remain in the No. 43 car.
The No. 42 is the number Lee Petty ran from 1949-61. He earned three championships and 54 wins in the No. 42. Kyle Petty raced the number from 1979-82 and 1989-96, with Mike Beam as the crew chief of the No. 42 in 1981-1982. Beam will serve as the president of Petty GMS Motorsports and oversee day-to-day operations. Brian Moffitt will be the executive vice president of sales.
Gallagher looked at owning a Cup team years before but said the financial situation didn’t make sense. He credited the arrival of the Next Gen car as making this the right time to join the Cup Series.
Gallagher looked at acquiring the charter from BK Racing in bankruptcy court in Aug. 2018, but he did not top the bid from Front Row Motorsports. Gallagher talked to Barney Visser, owner of Furniture Row Racing but did not pursue that charter in 2018. Spire Motorsports acquired that charter in Dec. 2018.
“We got to understand the nuances and the money and the expense,” Gallagher told NBC Sports.
He said he was content to remain in the Camping World Truck Series at the time.
“Then you started understanding the new car coming out,” Gallagher said.
That made the difference, allowing his operation the potential to close the gap on other teams quicker than before.
“I’m not going to do this just to go around and be 25th,” he said.
Petty said he is looking forward to the partnership.
“We said, ‘We got to look around and get somebody that is really interested in racing like we are. ... We want somebody that wants to win,’” the seven-time Cup champion said.
“Some of our partners before have been just investors, and a lot of times, it didn’t work. We wanted to work with somebody that knew about racing, wanted to race, wanted to be a winner and wanted to spend the money in the right place.”
GMS Racing began in 2014 and won Camping World Truck Series titles in 2016 and ’20. Its Truck operation will continue to be known as GMS Racing.