Corey LaJoie announced that he’d be leaving GoFas. Racing on August 21. He quickly became the hottest commodity in NASCAR Cup Series Free Agency. Rumors started fluidly flowing about LaJoie possibly replacing Ryan Preece at JTG Daughtery Racing or Richard Petty Motorsports. Talks about LaJoie heading to Richard Petty Motorsports. Drivers like Erik Jones and Bubba Wallace were also considered to sign at RPM. Then, Hamlin announced Wallace will drive for his team which was later named 23XI Racing and will partner with Joe Gibbs Racing.
A month after Wallace signed with his new team, Richard Petty Motorsports announced Erik Jones will drive the no. 43 next season. This left the general NASCAR fan base considerably questioning Preece’s chances to retain his standing position at JTG Daughtery. Uncertainty surrounding Preece’s future sustained through the November 8-Season Finale 400 at Phoenix and lasted until ten days after the season ended. On November 18, JTG Daughtery Racing announced Preece would return to the no. 37 team in 2021.
Meanwhile, in secret, Jeff Dickerson, Owner of Spire Motorsports, and LaJoie were igniting the engine on the freight liner to tighten LaJoie’s seatbelt for 2021. The worst-kept and highly-anticipated announcement came, with 31 days remaining in 2020, and 30 November. LaJoie hosted a special episode of Sunday Money and Dickerson joined him as a guest. In an ironic twist, LaJoie revealed his car number “7”. Meanwhile, expectedly, the team will lease engines from Hendrick Motorsports and retain the no. 77 team’s activity. Like most drivers who work for small teams, LaJoie announced a few sponsors and said that more information about the no. 7 and no. 77 teams will be revealed at a later date.
Earlier today, Chris Rice, president of Kaulig Racing, a team that competes in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, the second-highest NASCAR national touring series, said A.J. Allmendinger will drive the no. 16 car full time and sponsors will be released at a later date.