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Will SHR Actually Be ANY Better in 2024?

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Joshua Lipowski

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What’s Happening?

Stewart-Haas Racing has made a stir this offseason with a social media campaign highlighting what Stewart-Haas Racing is. While building a brand as a race team is vital, will it translate to results on the race track? Will SHR actually be any better in 2024?

  • Stewart-Haas Racing lost both Kevin Harvick and Aric Almirola this offseason to retirement. To replace them, they brought in Josh Berry and Noah Gragson.
  • SHR had their worst season in 2023 since Tony Stewart bought into the team in 2009. They failed to win a race, and Kevin Harvick was the only driver in the Playoffs. He was out in the Round of 16.
  • Fans are not convinced that SHR will suddenly turn a corner in 2024. However, fans are intrigued by how the team will do in 2024.

What’s New

The main difference at Stewart-Haas Racing for 2024 is the driver lineup. Kevin Harvick and Aric Almirola have retired, paving the way for Josh Berry and Noah Gragson.

Josh Berry joins from the NASCAR Xfinity Series, and he will drive the 4 car. Berry has won 5 career races, and he has a Championship 4 appearance in the Xfinity Series. However, he is coming off of a winless season in the Xfinity Series

Noah Gragson joins the team in the 10-car. Gragson had a difficult 2023 season with no top-10s and a suspension. However, he nearly won an Xfinity Series Championship in 2022, so, there is talent there.

SHR also revamped its spotter lineup for 2024. Eddie D’Hondt moves from Chase Elliott and the #9 team to Josh Berry in the #4 car. Andy Houston moves from Ryan Preece and the #41 to Noah Gragson and the #10. Tony Raines replaces Houston with Ryan Preece at the #41.

Another major change is the new Ford Mustang Dark Horse, which is a change across all Ford teams. While it may be an improvement, it is still an unknown commodity. It’s also worth noting that a Ford won the Championship in 2023 while SHR struggled.

What’s The Same

As of right now, there are no major changes to SHR’s crew chief lineup. Rodney Childers stays with the #4 team to lead Josh Berry. This is set to be one of the most interesting pairings of the 2024 season.

Chad Johnston looks set to return to Ryan Preece and the #41 car, at least for now, despite Preece struggling in 2024. Richard Boswell and Chase Briscoe seem to be teaming up again in 2024, and they recorded 4 top-10s together in 20 races in 2023. Drew Blickensderfer will partner with Noah Gragson and the #10 car.

The executive lineup at SHR looks the same for 2024 as well. If you want to go deeper, the Xfinity Series lineup for SHR in 2024 is exactly the same once again. In some ways, SHR is running it back for the vast majority of the major roles in the organization.

Will They Actually Be Better?

Compare how SHR approached this offseason to a team like Legacy Motor Club. Legacy Motor Club made changes at all levels of the organization. SHR made changes in the driver lineup but very little else.

Could these drivers be the solution? Maybe they could be a part of one, but, there is very little around the drivers that are different. On top of that, team leader Kevin Harvick is gone.

The changes are there, but SHR is not cleaning house by any means. This may be the beginning of a long rebuild for the team, so, 2024 may not be their year to take a big leap.

It’s going to be an interesting season for SHR. Will they be any better? Time will tell, but, many of the changes are not major.

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Picture of Joshua Lipowski

Joshua Lipowski

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