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Everything We Know (So Far) About Aric Almirola’s 2024 Plans

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Chris Hansen

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As the clock continues to tick on several key Silly Season announcements, one situation in particular has the attention of fans: the undetermined future of the driver of the #10 Stewart-Haas Racing Ford Aric Almirola.

In a previous article, we shared a clip of Almirola appearing on SIRIUSXM NASCAR Radio, to which he stated his 2024 plans are still not finalized at this point in time.

In addition, Aric stated that he needs to inform Stewart-Haas Racing of his decision in the next 2 months. Again, those were his comments at the end of July, and as the intensity of the Playoffs is making the most headlines throughout the garage area, Almirola’s future is still very much up in the air.

What’s the latest on what we know about Aric Almirola’s 2024 plans (so far)? Let’s get right to it.

Almirola’s Comments

At the 10-second timestamp in an interview with Frontstretch Media at Daytona, Aric stated that he “couldn’t confirm any new updates” regarding his future in the #10 car and that nothing had changed within the last 2 weeks.

The timeframe that Aric gave is nearing an end, and with the start of the Playoffs this upcoming weekend at Darlington those plans still seem to be up in the air on whether or not Aric will retire at the end of the 2023 season.

A few months ago, in a general Zoom session with FOX Sports’ Bob Pockrass, Aric said he “didn’t have a timeline on a decision about next season and whether he will return.”

In a recent article, Almirola stated in July that he was about 1 to 2 months away from making a decision regarding his future in NASCAR. Additionally, long-time sponsor Smithfield Foods, who sponsored Almirola since he arrived at Stewart-Haas Racing back in 2018, could potentially leave as a primary sponsor for the Stewart-Haas team come season’s end.

A major part of the business side of NASCAR is sponsorship for drivers, and just like Kyle Busch with M&M’s leaving at the end of the 2022 season, Aric Almirola could very much be in the same sort of situation should Smithfield decide to leave at the end of the 2023 season.

Nonetheless, if Aric is going off the timeline based on what he told reporters in late July, an announcement on his immediate future could come when we least expect it.

Stewart-Haas Racing’s Comments

Ever since it was announced that Josh Berry was coming aboard to replace the retiring Kevin Harvick in 2024, that left many unknowns with the status of Aric Almirola and the #10 car.

In a report from Kyle Dalton, receiving comments from The Athletics’ Jordan Bianchi, the changes coming down at Stewart-Haas racing may not end with Harvick retiring, but also include the departure of Almirola as well.

Furthermore, Dalton states that with Smithfield potentially stepping away from sponsoring the #10 full-time, it could signal that Stewart-Haas racing is going through a complete overhaul, which may even include downsizing from the current 4 car team to perhaps fielding only 2 full-time cars beginning in 2024.

This article from Fronstretch’s Wyatt Watson dropped one day after Tony Stewart’s comments that “I’m not interested in some kid’s father coming and buying their way into the Cup Series. I have zero interest in that.” With that being said, Stewart and the assortment of owners for SHR are going to have their hands full when it comes time to naming a replacement if Almirola decides to hang up the helmet when the checkered flag flies at Phoenix Raceway in November.

From The Pressbox

In an interview with the O’Reilly Auto Parts Pit Reporters show hosted on the Performance Racing Network, John Roberts of SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90 chimed in with his thoughts on the current situation with the No. 10 SHR Ford and who could potentially end up in that ride in 2024.

Roberts goes on to say that he “expects that ride and that car to be available in 2024.” In addition, Roberts mentions that Zane Smith, who currently doesn’t have a set future following the announcement of Michael McDowell and Todd Gilliland remaining with Front Row Motorsports, is a potential leading candidate to fill that ride should Aric Almirola decide to call it a career at the end of the 2023 season.

At this point in time, there are still many questions left to be answered with the status of the #10 SHR Ford and Aric Almirola’s future in the NASCAR Cup Series.

With an expected timeline potentially coming very soon regarding Aric’s situation, there are sure to be more announcements coming very soon. Make sure to follow The Daily Downforce for all of the latest developments as they become available.

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Chris Hansen

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