NASCAR Silly Season: Onward to 2021
With less than 50 days to go before the Daytona 500, NASCAR’s Silly Season continues on.
Over the last month, however, Silly Season news has been largely kept to the Xfinity and Camping World Truck Series.
In the Xfinity Series, Jeffrey Earnhardt was among a handful of drivers to claim full-time rides for 2021.
Meanwhile in the Truck Series, Derek Kraus announced his return to McAnally-Hilgemann Racing, and Chandler Smith was moved up to full-time status for one of the series’ traditional powers, Kyle Busch Motorsports.
As for the top-tier Cup Series, several entries remain open as the calendar prepares to turn to 2021.
Here’s how the NASCAR Silly Season scorecard looks:
ANNOUNCED CUP RIDES FOR 2021
No. 00: Quin Houff enters the second year of his two-year deal with StarCom Racing.
No. 3: Austin Dillon is signed with Richard Childress Racing through at least 2021.
No. 4: Kevin Harvick signed a contract extension in February that will keep him at Stewart-Haas Racing through the 2023 season.
No. 6: Ryan Newman‘s contract with Roush Fenway Racing goes through 2021.
No. 8: Tyler Reddick will be back with Richard Childress Racing for 2021.
No. 11: Denny Hamlin is signed with Joe Gibbs Racing through at least next year.
No. 17: Chris Buescher is signed with Roush Fenway Racing through at least the 2021 season.
No. 18: Kyle Busch is signed with Joe Gibbs Racing through at least 2021.
No. 19: Martin Truex Jr. is signed with Joe Gibbs Racing through at least 2021.
No. 21: Wood Brothers Racing announced Oct. 9 that Matt DiBenedetto would race for the team in 2021 before Austin Cindric takes over the car in 2022. Roger Penske said Oct. 20 on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio that he has an option on DiBenedetto’s contract for 2022.
No. 22: Joey Logano is tied to Team Penske through 2023.
No. 37: Ryan Preece will return to JTG Daugherty Racing.
No. 41: Cole Custer, the 2020 Cup Rookie of the Year, will be back in this ride.
No. 43: Erik Jones moves over to Richard Petty Motorsports, signing a multi-year deal.
NASCAR Silly Season available Cup rides for 2021
No. 32: Ride is open with Corey LaJoie announcing he will not return to Go Fas Racing in 2021. Team will not have a charter in 2021 and will run a limited schedule.
No. 38: John Hunter Nemechek and Front Row Motorsports announced Nov. 16 that Nemechek will not return to the team for the 2021 season.
No. 77: Spire Motorsports purchased the charter and assets of Leavine Family Racing and will be a two-car operation in 2021. Christopher Bell will move to the No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing team for 2021. Spire has not named who will take over this ride for next season. Corey LaJoie takes over the No. 7 for Spire.
No. 96: Daniel Suarez and Gaunt Brothers Racing announced Sept. 15 that they would part ways after this season.
Rick Ware Racing: Organization has not announced drivers for its multiple rides for 2021.
NASCAR Silly Season Xfinity driver announcements for 2021
No. 0: Jeffrey Earnhardt returns to JD Motorsports and moves to full-time status.
No. 8: Josh Berry will run about 12 races in this car before Sam Mayer takes over the ride the rest of the season.
No. 15: Colby Howard returns to JD Motorsports and moves to full-time status.
No. 20: Harrison Burton will return for his second season at Joe Gibbs Racing.
No. 39: Ryan Sieg will be back with RSS Racing.
No. 47: Kyle Weatherman returns to Mike Harmon Racing.
No. 51: Jeremy Clements is back in this ride.
No. 68: Brandon Brown returns to Brandonbilt Motorsports.
No. 74: Bayley Currey will drive for Mike Harmon Racing.
No. 92: Josh Williams will be back with DGM Racing.
No. 98: Riley Herbst joins Stewart-Haas Racing and takes over this ride.
Our Motorsports: Organization has confirmed a second, full-time Xfinity entry in 2021. Tyler Reddick will drive the entry in February’s season opener at Daytona.
NASCAR Silly Season Truck driver announcements for 2021
DGR-Crosley: Hailie Deegan moves up to this series after a year in the ARCA Series.
Hattori Motorsports: Austin Hill is back with the team for another season.
Kyle Busch Motorsports: John Hunter Nemechek moves from Cup to this Truck team for 2021. Chandler Smith returns to the team and moves to full-time status.
McAnally-Hilgemann Racing: Derek Kraus returns to the team for a second season.
Niece Motorsports: Ryan Truex will run a full schedule for the team. He joins Carson Hocevar, who also will run a full schedule for the team. The team announced Dec. 2 that Brett Moffitt will run the full schedule for the team.
Young’s Motorsports: Spencer Boyd will return to drive the No. 20 truck.