By Seth Eggert, Staff Writer
* Editor’s note: Motorsports Tribune will be previewing the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season for the top-30 drivers in the series leading into next month’s 60th running of the Daytona 500.
Years in Cup: 12
Career Wins: Two Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Victories
One Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series driver not expecting many changes for the 2018 season is David Ragan. The Unadilla, GA native will return to Front Row Motorsports for a fifth season. 2018 marks the first time since the 2014 season in which Ragan has remained with the same team for consecutive years. However, Ragan will have a new teammate as Michael McDowell joins the team for the 2018 season.
The 2017 season was Ragan’s best since the 2015 season when he filled-in for Kyle Busch and Brian Vickers, ultimately competing for three teams that season. He scored three top-10s, including a best finish of sixth-place finish in the Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway. Ragan finished 30th in the championship standings, up from 32nd in 2016.
Expectations are high in 2018 for FRM as the team will have an enhanced technical alliance with Roush Fenway Racing. Ford Performance’s dominance on the Superspeedways last season will also give the team high hopes heading into the season-opening Daytona 500.
When FRM announced their continued and enhanced relationship with Ford Performance Ragan said,
“Bob Jenkins and I have developed a good relationship over the years, both professionally and personally. I believe in this team and am proud to have been part of its growth and its successes. I’m excited that Bob and Ford have agreed to take the program to the next level, and I’m happy I’ll be here to help the team continue to grow.”
Ragan enters the 2018 season with 398 career starts in NASCAR’s Premier Series. He has two career victories, 15 top-fives, 39 top-10s, and two pole positions. Ragan’s best points finish was 13th in 2008 during his tenure with Roush Fenway Racing.
Ragan’s car number, crew chief, and sponsors have not yet been finalized. That fact aside, it seems that with all of the positives, Ragan may have one of his best seasons to date.
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