A key member of JR Motorsports is switching teams for the 2022 season. Allen Hart, the lead race engineer for the No. 7 team, will join Sam Hunt Racing as crew chief and technical director.
Sam Hunt Racing announced the news on Wednesday, November 10. The team confirmed that Hart will serve as a full-time crew chief for the first time in his career. There is no information available about whether SHR will use one driver or a rotating group as in 2021, but the team will make announcements at a later date.
“I’m so proud to add Allen to our young, blossoming organization,” Hunt said in a press release. “Allen is an experienced, race-winning engineer and leader at the Xfinity level, and he will be a huge asset to our organization for years to come. We are ready to provide him with this opportunity to continue building our program, as well as our working relationship with TRD and the current staff we have. Andrew [Abbott] has done a great job for our program this year, and he is still a large asset to our team.”
Hart Has Several Years of Experience in NASCAR
A veteran engineer, Hart has spent time with multiple teams. He worked for Turner Motorsports and Team Penske before joining JR Motorsports and the No. 7 team.
Hart has been with Allgaier’s team since 2016 and has helped the JRM entry contend for wins on a weekly basis. The veteran driver has 13 wins since the 2017 season, and he has reached the championship four in four separate seasons (2016, 2017, 2019, 2020).
“I am really looking forward to starting this new chapter with Sam Hunt Racing,” Hart said in the press release. “Sam and I have been friends for a long time now, and I’ve really enjoyed watching this team grow from afar. Becoming a crew chief has been a goal of mine since I first came into this sport, and to be able to have that opportunity with this group is extremely special. I can’t thank everyone at JR Motorsports and on the No. 7 team who helped me get to this point over these last eight seasons. Now it’s time to focus on 2022 and get the year started off on a strong note. I am ready to get going.”
SHR Featured Several Drivers During the 2021 Season
There were several drivers that got behind the wheel of the No. 26 Toyota Supra during the 2021 Xfinity Series season, including multiple Truck Series contenders. They combined for two top-10 finishes and one top-five.
The list of rotating drivers included John Hunter Nemechek, Grant Enfinger, Kris Wright, Will Rodgers, Dylan Lupton, Brandon Gdovic, Santino Ferrucci, and Colin Garrett. Nemechek posted the best finish of third at Richmond Raceway while Ferrucci made the most starts (seven) out of all of the drivers.
SHR will now enter its third year of operation with plans to showcase even more improvement throughout the 33-race schedule. Hart will make his full-time debut as a crew chief after a one-off debut in 2021 due to COVID-19 protocols, a sixth-place run by Allgaier at Darlington Raceway on September 4.