Noah Gragson has marked his return to NASCAR Cup Series after signing a multi-year contract to drive the No. 10 Ford for Stewart-Haas Racing.
Noah Gragson has recovered from a turbulent rookie season that was cut short by suspension as he will be driving the #10 Stewart-Haas Racing Ford Mustang Dark Horse in the 2024 NASCAR Cup Series, the team revealed on Wednesday.
Gragson severed ties with Legacy Motor Club following his suspension for liking a social media post that disregarded George Floyd’s murder, and as a result he missed the last four months of the Cup Series season.
Afterwards, Gragson revealed that he has been consulting with a sports psychologist and has found great value in the guidance he received from the sensitivity training mandated by NASCAR.
Following his September reinstatement by NASCAR, he resumed racing in late models and even participated in the Canadian Pinty’s Series season finale, placing eighth at Delaware Speedway.
Gragson is now able to drive for one of Stewart-Haas’ most successful teams after winning two titles with Tony Stewart and Kevin Harvick. The 2020 Daytona 500 winning crew chief Drew Blickensderfer will be Gragson’s new partner.
“I’m grateful for this opportunity with Stewart-Haas Racing and while most people in the industry are happy that the offseason is here, I want to get started on 2024 and go racing as soon as I can,” said Gragson.
“Stewart-Haas is filled with racers and I saw that and felt it as soon as I walked onto the shop floor. There are high expectations here and a strong desire to compete and win races.
“I have high expectations for myself and I want to deliver for Tony (Stewart) and Gene (Haas) and everyone at Stewart-Haas.
“I race to win and winning at the Cup level is what I’ve been working toward since I started racing Bandoleros as a thirteen-year-old at the Bullring in Las Vegas.
“To be with an established team with a history of winning is what every driver wants. I’ve got exactly that here at Stewart-Haas and I aim to make the most of it.”
Gragson was unable to qualify for his Cup debut at the 2021 Daytona 500, but he was able to participate in the race the following year as a part-time driver for Kaulig Racing and Beard Motorsports, and he also covered five rounds as an injured Alex Bowman’s replacement. He finished fifth at Daytona during this period in 2022.
Following a successful four-year career in the Xfinity Series, where he finished second in the 2022 championship and won thirteen races, Legacy picked him to drive the #42 Chevrolet for the entirety of 2023. However, Gragson only managed two top-20 results during the team’s challenging season.
Aric Almirola will be replaced by Gragson following his retirement from full-time racing after 2023 season. Both he and his old Xfinity teammate are new to SHR as Josh Berry replaces the retiring Kevin Harvick in the #4.
“Noah deserves to be in the NASCAR Cup Series and we’re very happy to have him as the driver of our #10 Ford Mustang,” Stewart stated.
“Noah has performed at every level where he’s competed and has regularly been in championship contention.
“That’s the kind of driver we need at Stewart-Haas and that’s why Noah is a part of our team.”
SHR will be Gragson’s first Ford squad in the national series after only racing Toyotas in the Truck Series, Chevrolet in the Cup and a combination of the two in Xfinity.
In the past, he participated in Ford races in the current ARCA Menards Series East and West, where he placed second and third in the respective championship races in 2015 and 2016.