Chris Knight of Catchfence.com reported Saturday evening that Daniel Suarez will join Richard Childress Racing in 2019 replacing the departing Ryan Newman in the #31 car.
Knight is the only “media” member reporting this and no comment was given from the Suarez or RCR camp. This could be a Lee Spencer calling Brennan Poole to the RCR #27 type of situation.
Ryan Newman announced Saturday afternoon that he would join Roush Fenway Racing in 2019 driving the famed #6 car. With that move the #31 seat is open. RCR has been the recipient of numerous rumors in silly season, the most valid being the promotion of Daniel Hemric from the Xfinity Series to the Cup Series. However, Hemric’s name has popped up for both the #47 and #95 in 2019.
Insert Daniel Suarez
Daniel Suarez is expected to be replaced at Joe Gibbs Racing next season by Martin Truex Jr. as Furniture Row Racing closes their doors.
Suarez joining RCR makes financial sense for all parties involved. The #31 is partially funded next year with Caterpillar still under contract. Suarez brings sponsorship with him and the rumor mill has said Arris is willing to sponsor a second car in 2019 for Saurez.
RCR would be getting sponsorship and a driver that is still growing. The upside on Suarez is strong, a stable team with cars that can let him hone his skills is what he needs. RCR has the tendency to be a stable landing spot for a number of drivers. Suarez won’t win in 2019 but he can certainly replicate with Newman has done and then build off of that.
Suarez will be getting a team that is one of the best second-tier teams in Cup. It’s a downgrade from JGR but in terms of competitiveness, he isn’t stepping down to a JTG or LFR at this point. RCR has been working to improve their performance and it has slowly gotten better, they aren’t winning races on speed yet but they’re competitive enough to run Top 15 regularly.
It will be interesting to see how Austin Dillon and Suarez interact as teammates if this deal happens.
Keep in mind this is all a rumor still and nothing has been signed.
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