Rick Ware Racing Names New Driver for West Coast Trips

Rick Ware Racing

Getty David Ragan will make multiple starts.

The No. 15 Rick Ware Racing Ford Mustang will have a new driver for the upcoming west coast swing of the NASCAR Cup Series schedule. Garrett Smithley will return to the team and make starts in the next three races.

Rick Ware Racing announced the news on Tuesday, February 22. The team said that Smithley will return for another part-time season starting with the February 27 race at Auto Club Speedway. He will return to the No. 15 Ford for races at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and Phoenix Raceway. Jacob Companies will serve as his primary partner for the races.

“We’re excited to have Garrett (Smithley) back in the fold at RWR,” said team owner Rick Ware. “He has been an integral part of our organization the last few years. Our alliance with Stewart-Haas Racing, Ford and Roush Yates Engines will allow us to continue to build our program and be able to add another quality driver to our 2022 NASCAR Cup Series line up.”

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Smithley Has Spent 3 Part-Time Seasons With RWR

Garrett Smithley

GettyGarrett Smithley has multiple starts with Rick Ware Racing.

The Pennsylvania native has made 70 starts in the NASCAR Cup Series, split between multiple teams. He has spent the most time with Rick Ware Racing, making 52 starts between 2019-2021.

This run with RWR includes a 27-race schedule during the 2021 season when Smithley drove the No. 15, No. 53, and No. 51 entries while posting a season-best finish of 24th at Texas Motor Speedway.

The situation will change during the 2022 season. Smithley will have better equipment for his return to RWR. The Cup Series team has partnered with Stewart-Haas Racing and Roush Yates Engines for the move to the Gen 7 stock cars. The result has been improved speed from both Cody Ware’s No. 51 and the No. 15 that David Ragan drove to an eighth-place finish in the Daytona 500.

“As the NASCAR Cup Series enters a new era of stock car racing with the Next Gen car, I felt it was extremely important to not only remain in the Cup Series, but to do so with an organization like RWR,” Smithley said in a statement. “The opportunity that Rick and Lisa (Ware) have offered me is special, and I am blessed to have them in my corner. I am looking forward to being a part of the next chapter at RWR, and representing Jacob Companies on-track in California.”

RWR Will Reveal More Races at a Later Date

Smithley will kick off his part-time schedule with the west coast swing, but it will not be his entire run in the No. 15. The team confirmed that it will reveal more dates and sponsors at a later date.

Smithley will alternate with multiple drivers during the 2022 Cup Series season. Ragan already made one start, but he will suit up for more races throughout the year. According to a release from Ford Performance, he will compete in both Daytona races. He will also shoot for potentially two others, including a short track.

Similarly, Ryan Preece has three starts for RWR on his schedule while serving as a reserve driver at Stewart-Haas Racing. He took on the Busch Light Clash at the LA Memorial Coliseum, but he should also compete in the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway and the May 1 race at Dover International Speedway.

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