John Hunter Nemechek will drive the No. 42 car in the NASCAR Cup Series starting in 2024, Legacy Motor Club announced on Wednesday.
Nemechek will be the permanent replacement for Noah Gragson. The driver and the team parted ways after Gragson liked a George Floyd meme on social media.
Nemechek drove for Front Row Motorsports starting in 2019 and raced a full schedule in 2020. He also had one appearance in the Cup Series for 23XI Racing in 2022, when he replaced a suspended Bubba Wallace. Next year, he will be back full time.
“To be able to announce my plans for next season so early and officially say I will be competing full-time in the NASCAR Cup Series relieves a lot of pressure,” Nemechek said in a news release. “There is so much to be done for next year, and this gives us the opportunity to get the news out there and move forward. Also, driving for Maury (Gallagher), Jimmie (Johnson) and Richard Petty is a dream come true for me.”
Nemechek has three top-10 finishes in 40 races on the Cup Series circuit. In the Xfinity Series, he has seven wins in 88 races. In the Truck Series, he has 13 wins in 149 races.
“John Hunter has been around a racetrack literally since the day he was born,” Legacy Motor Club chief executive Cal Wells III said. “I have watched him since he was a little kid – from walking around the track in a firesuit matching the one worn by his father – to becoming the talent he is today. He is a perfect fit for the Club and I expect great things out of him.”