AJ Allmendinger Making Big NASCAR Change: Report

AJ Allmendinger

Getty AJ Allmendinger will move up to the Cup Series in 2023.

The Dinger is making a big change in 2023. The Athletic reports that AJ Allmendinger will move back to the NASCAR Cup Series on a full-time basis after spending the past two seasons as a full-time Xfinity Series driver.

Jordan Bianchi reported the news ahead of the race weekend at Charlotte Roval. He reported that Allmendinger will remain at Kaulig Racing in 2023. He will just take over the No. 16 Chevrolet Camaro and pursue Cup Series playoff points instead of fighting for the Xfinity Series championship.

Allmendinger, a veteran of the NASCAR Cup Series, has made 18 starts at the top level of stock car racing for Kaulig Racing. He has delivered one win for the team — the 2021 road course race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway — while securing eight total top-10 finishes and three top-fives.

Kaulig Racing Has a Special Event Planned

Kaulig Racing

GettyKaulig Racing celebrates a win at Talladega Superspeedway.

Kaulig Racing has already confirmed that there will be some driver announcements ahead of the Roval weekend. The team will hold a Fan Day on Wednesday, October 5, which will include the 1st Annual Kaulig Racing 5K.

According to the schedule, Kaulig Racing will make multiple announcements during this Fan Day. There will be a paint scheme reveal for one of the remaining races on the 2022 schedule, as well as an autograph session featuring Landon Cassill, Daniel Hemric, Noah Gragson, Allmendinger, and Justin Haley.

At 11 a.m. ET, Kaulig Racing will make an important announcement. The team will reveal the full lineup of drivers for the Xfinity Series and Cup Series cars. This should be when the team confirms Bianchi’s report about Allmendinger moving up to the Next Gen No. 16 Chevrolet Camaro.

Allmendinger Has a Previous Cup Series Playoff Appearance

AJ Allmendinger

GettyAJ Allmendinger won a Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International.

The move to the Cup Series will mark a return for The Dinger. He has made 389 starts at the top level of NASCAR, a run that includes eight full-time seasons and an appearance in the playoffs.

Allmendinger turned in a strong season for JTG Daugherty Racing in 2014. He drove the No. 47 Chevrolet in all 36 races, and he posted five top-10 finishes and two top-fives. He also won his first career Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International after leading 29 laps and battling Marcos Ambrose.

This win punched Allmendinger’s ticket to the playoffs and it marked a major moment for both him and JTG Daugherty Racing. Allmendinger didn’t make it beyond the Round of 16, but he ultimately ended the year 13th in the standings while Kevin Harvick won the championship.

While Allmendinger experienced the joys of winning in 2014, he ultimately left the top level of NASCAR after the 2018 season. He was going to spend more time on TV and potentially in sports car series, but the situation changed in 2019 when Kaulig Racing offered him a part-time role.

Allmendinger took advantage of this opportunity. He made five Xfinity Series starts in 2019, and he won at the Charlotte Roval. His role increased in 2020 with 11 starts and two more wins, and then he went full-time in 2021.

This first full season featured Allmendinger celebrating five trips to Victory Lane and reaching the championship four. He finished fourth in the standings and then prepared to take on another packed schedule in 2022. He has since delivered four more wins, including his first on a superspeedway.

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