Stewart-Haas Racing announced on January 6 that Ryan Preece would take on two NASCAR Cup Series races in 2022 as part of a reserve role. Rick Ware Racing has now provided even more information by announcing that Preece will run multiple races in the No. 15 Ford Mustang.
RWR announced the news on January 13 with a press release. The team did not explicitly confirm Preece’s full schedule or the sponsors that will join him for the part-time schedule. However, RWR revealed that Preece will make his debut during the Busch Light Clash at the LA Memorial Coliseum.
SHR also said in the original announcement on January 6 that Preece will make his first start of the year on May 1 at Dover International Speedway and then he will compete for a Crown Jewel when he suits up for the May 29 Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. These races will likely remain the same as he joins Rick Ware Racing.
“Ryan is a great addition to the RWR lineup for 2022,” said team owner Rick Ware in a statement. “His talent on the race track has been shown through his achievements in the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour and NASCAR Xfinity Series. Our alliance with SHR and Ford has allowed us to put a wheelman behind the wheel, starting at the quarter-mile showdown in LA.”
The Partnership Stems From a Technical Alliance
Preece is a reserve driver for Stewart-Haas Racing, but he has the opportunity to make starts for Rick Ware Racing due to a technical alliance between the two teams.
RWR announced on October 10 that the two organizations had formed an alliance that also included Roush Yates Engines and Ford Performance. The deal includes a leased engine package for the Next Gen testing, as well as the entire 2022 and 2023 seasons.
“I am excited to have an engineering alliance with a great team like SHR, to be able to assist in building our cars and have the support thru this major development process, all the way thru the 2022 season,” Ware said in a statement on October 10. “Partnering with Roush Yates Engines and SHR is the logical next step in continuing to grow as an organization.”
Ware’s organization worked with a variety of drivers and manufacturers prior to the 2022 season, occasionally fielding both a Chevrolet and a Ford in the same race. Now the situation has changed with RWR moving over to the Ford Performance family for the next two seasons. He will also have the opportunity to work with Preece, a member of another organization, as part of the alliance.
Preece Will Not Take On the Daytona 500
While Preece will make his season debut during the Busch Light Clash, he will not be the first person driving the No. 15 during a points-paying race. RWR will rely on a different driver for the Daytona 500.
The team announced on January 12 that David Ragan will take over the No. 15 for the Great American Race after he previously secured a top-five finish for the team in 2020. Ragan will also run multiple other races in the No. 15 Ford Mustang during the 2022 season. Though RWR did not provide any further information about these plans.
Ragan has made 472 starts in the NASCAR Cup Series, and he has achieved the most success at superspeedways. He won one race at Daytona International Speedway in 2011 and then won another at Talladega Superspeedway in 2013. The start in the Daytona 500 will provide him with another opportunity.