NASCAR: Ganassi confirms Chastain for full-time Xfinity ride in 2019
By Kelly Crandall | RACER.com NASCAR correspondent
Chip Ganassi Racing has confirmed Ross Chastain will drive the No. 42 Xfinity Series car full-time in 2019.
Chastain will move to Ganassi after four years with JD Motorsports. But it was an impressive three-race stint with CGR earlier this season that boosted the 25-year-old Chastain into the spotlight.
Chastain won the pole at Darlington and led a race-high 90 laps before being involved in a late accident with Kevin Harvick. He then won in dominating fashion two weeks later in Las Vegas, and Chastain closed out his deal with a second-place effort in Richmond.
MORE NASCAR ON RACER.COM
In his three races with Ganassi, Chastain had an average finish of 9.3 with a total of 270 laps led.
DC Solar will continue its partnership with CGR, which began in 2015, expanding its program to become the sponsor of Chastain’s No. 42 Chevrolet.
“DC Solar is a great example of partnership,” said Ganassi. “Since coming to our organization, both of our teams have worked together to build a platform that is beneficial to their business.
“When we first talked about putting Ross in the car this year, this was something that Jeff and Paulette (DC Solar founders Jeff and Paulette Carpoff) felt strongly about and Ross made the most of the opportunity running well in all three races and bringing home a win, and a runner-up finish. We are looking forward to him continuing that success in 2019 and competing for his first NASCAR Xfinity Series championship.”
The 2019 season will be Chastain’s fifth full season in the series. Driving the No. 4 for JD Motorsports, Chastain has earned 12 top-10 finishes and has finished inside the top 16 in points every year. Chastain qualified for the playoffs for the first time this season and while no longer eligible for the championship, he is in position to finish inside the top 10 in points, which would be a career best.
“I’m an eighth-generation farmer from Florida who was fortunate enough to get a shot in top-flight equipment,” said Chastain. “I’m incredibly grateful to everyone, especially my family, who helped me get to this point. I’ve had a great run with Johnny Davis Motorsports, and it’s obvious I wouldn’t be in the position I am today without Johnny’s support.
“I have been racing everything that I can since breaking into NASCAR seven years ago. Until DC Solar and Chip gave me a shot in Darlington, nobody knew who I was. I want to remain humble. I enjoy being the underdog.
“Excited or thrilled doesn’t begin to capture how I feel about joining CGR full-time. I’m eager to take full advantage of the opportunity in front of me. The obvious goal is to win races, compete for an Xfinity Series championship and represent DC Solar to the best of my ability.”
FOR MORE RACING NEWS AND ANALYSIS VISIT RACER.COM
ABOUT KELLY CRANDALL
Kelly has been on the NASCAR beat full-time since 2013, and joined RACER as chief NASCAR writer in 2017. Her work has also appeared in NASCAR.com, the NASCAR Illustrated magazine, and NBC Sports. A corporate communications graduate from Central Penn College, Crandall is a two-time George Cunningham Writer of the Year recipient from the National Motorsports Press Association.