Photo: Stephen A. Arce/ASP, Inc.

Ross Chastain to Take Over Ganassi No. 42 for Three Race Stint

By David Morgan, NASCAR Editor

After driving for smaller teams for the majority of his NASCAR career, Ross Chastain will get to race for Chip Ganassi Racing’s Xfinity Series team in a three-race deal announced Thursday.

Chastain, who currently sits 12th in the Xfinity Series points standings with four races remaining in the regular season, will take over the cockpit of the No. 42 Chevrolet beginning at Darlington Raceway on Labor Day weekend, followed by the regular season finale at Las Vegas and the first race of the Xfinity playoffs at Richmond.

“This opportunity with DC Solar and Chip Ganassi Racing is unbelievable,” Chastain said. “I want to recognize Johnny Davis for all that he has done for my career and express how proud I am of our performance this year. I am also very thankful to grow my relationship with Jeff and Paulette Carpoff and look forward to having this opportunity in the No. 42 DC Solar Chevy in the NASCAR Xfinity Series car for these races.”

Since entering the Xfinity Series full-time in 2015, Chastain has driven exclusively for JD Motorsports, delivering two top-five finishes and 11 top-10 finishes over the last four years. This season has statistically been his best with an average finish of 16.6 through the first 22 races of the season.

In addition to his Xfinity Series endeavors, the Alva, Fla. native has run in both the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series and the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. Though Chastain has yet to crack the top-10 in the Cup Series, he has scored five top-five finishes, 14 top-10 finishes, and two poles in 56 Truck Series starts.

“We are looking forward to having Ross (Chastain) in the car for a few races this season,” said Doug Duchardt, Chief Executive Officer, Chip Ganassi Racing. “To have DC Solar come on-board for these races with Ross is just another testament to the support that they have for our organization and the sport of NASCAR racing.”

While Thursday’s news is excellent for the Chastain camp, the other side of the coin belongs to John Hunter Nemechek, who has driven the No. 42 car to three top-five finishes and six top-10 finishes in his 12 starts with the team this season.

Nemechek responded via Twitter that he was disappointed he would not be in the car for those three races, but was optimistic on his outlook for the remainder of the season.

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David Morgan is the Associate Editor for Motorsports Tribune. A 2008 graduate from the University of Mississippi, David has followed NASCAR since the early 90’s and became hooked at an early age after attending his first race at Talladega Superspeedway in 1993. He has traveled across the country since 2012 to cover some of the most prestigious events both IndyCar and NASCAR have to offer, with an aim to only expand on that in the near future.