The No. 3 team of Richard Childress Racing is about to undergo a significant change. Crew chief Justin Alexander has announced he will leave the pit box after the 2022 Cup Series season comes to an end.
Alexander provided the update to FOX Sports’ Bob Pockrass ahead of the playoff opener at Darlington Raceway. He said that he will no longer be Austin Dillon’s crew chief and that this was his decision. Alexander also said that he has not yet made a decision about what he will do in 2023 and beyond. He just won’t be the one guiding Dillon’s team each week.
Alexander and Dillon will have an opportunity to go out on a high note together. The No. 3 team is in the playoffs after a win at Daytona International Speedway on August 28. Making it through the rounds will not be easy considering that Dillon only has five points to his name, the fewest among the 16 drivers. However, they will have some extra motivation in the coming weeks.
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Dillon & Alexander have Celebrated Big Moments Together
Dillon has worked with multiple crew chiefs during his full-time Cup Series career. He started out with Gil Martin before working with Richard “Slugger” Labbe. Alexander ultimately took over for Labbe midway through the 2017 season, and he helped Dillon secure his first career win at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
Alexander and Dillon achieved more success in 2018. They kicked off the season by winning the Daytona 500 and securing a spot in the Cup Series playoffs. This was their second Crown Jewel win together.
Alexander worked with a variety of drivers during the 2019 season while Dillon moved forward with Danny Stockman Jr. Though this was one of Dillon’s worst seasons statistically considering that he finished 21st in points after posting only six top-10 finishes. He did win the pole three times.
Dillon and Alexander ultimately reunited in 2020, and they have remained together ever since. They have celebrated two more wins together, headlined by the 2020 race at Texas Motor Speedway when Dillon held off Tyler Reddick, Kyle Busch, and Joey Logano on multiple restarts.
All four of Dillon’s career Cup Series wins have been with Alexander atop the pit box. This situation will change in 2023, but the duo will first pursue more wins during the Cup Series playoffs.
Multiple Teams Will Have Crew Chief Changes
The No. 3 team will not be the only one undergoing changes after the 2022 Cup Series playoffs come to an end. There are multiple that have crew chief questions heading toward Darlington Raceway.
The list also includes the No. 48 team of Hendrick Motorsports. Greg Ives announced on August 26 that he will step away from his role as a crew chief after the 2022 season. He will move to a different position at Hendrick Motorsports while Alex Bowman prepares to work with a new crew chief for the first time since joining the organization in 2016.
Another question revolves around Petty GMS Motorsports. The No. 42 Chevrolet will have a new driver when Noah Gragson moves up to the Cup Series and replaces Ty Dillon. Jerame Donley was the crew chief of No. 42 team in 2022, but Petty GMS Motorsports has not provided any details about whether he will join Gragson in 2023 or if another crew chief will take over.