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Is Rajah Caruth Headed For the Cup Series?

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What’s Happening?

Rajah Caruth bounced back from GMS Racing shutting down by signing with Spire Motorsports with support from He won his first career race at Las Vegas and sits comfortably in the top 10 in points. When could we see Caruth heading up to the Cup Series?

  • Rajah Caruth is in his second full-time season in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series. After a solid finish to the 2023 season with three top-10s in the final seven races, Caruth has already had a career year in 2024 with career-highs in top-fives, top-tens, and wins.
  • The support from makes Caruth a very interesting prospect. Hendrick Motorsports tends to be picky about which drivers it supports as they work up the ranks, and Caruth has a ton of support from Hendrick.
  • Fans are very intrigued by Caruth. His surprise success and support from one of the most powerful team owners in the sport give him a lot of potential to rise through the ranks.

Caruth’s Path Upwards

The last time Hendrick Motorsports shepherded a young prospect into the NASCAR Cup Series was when he brought Chase Elliott and William Byron up the ranks during the 2010s. Throughout history, HMS has been very picky with which drivers it invests in, but there have been plenty of big hits.

Drivers like Jeff Gordon, Kyle Busch, Elliott, and Byron all went on to have fantastic careers. One of those drivers is a Hall of Famer (Jeff Gordon), Busch and Elliott feel like virtual locks, and Byron could have Hall of Fame potential if he keeps his performance up for a few more years. Sure, there have been some misses like Brian Vickers and Jack Sprague, but when Hendrick hits, they hit big.

That’s what makes their support of Caruth so interesting. If is supporting him, Caruth is on Hendrick’s radar. Jeff Gordon said this about Caruth to HBCU Gameday during Speedweeks this past February.

Rick [Hendrick] and I talked about it the other day, we’ve seen him several times and whether it’s at the banquet or at the Hall of Fame, and just every time he’s coming up, shaking our hands, he’s well put together, well spoken, and very driven, very passionate about it. When you see that in a young driver, that’s what you are looking for.

Jeff Gordon

With all of this in mind, what does the future look like for Caruth, and how quickly can he jump up to the Cup Series?

When Can Caruth Move Up to the Cup Series?

Each HMS driver is signed fairly far into the future, with William Byron signed through 2025, Kyle Larson and Alex Bowman through 2026, and Chase Elliott through 2027. Each driver is relatively young, fully funded, and could be at HMS for a long time.

There is no place for Caruth in the HMS landscape until maybe 2026 or 2027 at the earliest, which is not a bad thing. He is only in his second full-time Truck Series season, and as we discussed in the article below, the general trend is three to four full-time seasons in the lower series before a driver moves up.

Caruth does not need to rush, and HMS does not need to rush him. Granted, Caruth does need to perform better than he did throughout April and May, where he only scored one top-10 finish at Martinsville. That was his most recent top-10 of the season.

Could Spire work Caruth up the ladder with HMS’ blessing in a few years? It’s possible, especially if HMS remains committed to its four drivers. It likely depends on how the careers of Corey LaJoie, Carson Hocevar, and Michael McDowell pan out.

Caruth is not heading up to the Cup Series for a while yet, and he does not need to be in the Cup Series for a while. It depends on current contracts and how drivers perform in the coming years.

What do you think about all this? Let us know on Discord or X what your take is, and don’t forget you can also follow us on Instagram, Facebook, and even YouTube.

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