Possible replacements for Kurt Busch

Kurt Busch is no stranger to making headlines in NASCAR, with a number of them having already been produced surrounding the driver’s future and his career in the sport.

However, the latest news that appears to have emerged regarding the veteran driver is that he could be set to leave Chip Ganassi Racing this season, with Busch failing to commit his future to the team despite being in a contract year, whilst rumors are already flying around suggesting that he could fill the second seat that 23XI Racing alongside Bubba Wallace as the NASCAR team looks to continue to expand and give their chances of winning the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series.

The former world champion has revealed he would love the opportunity to drive the Next-Gen car and could be perfect for Wallace to learn from as he aims to continue to grow his own presence within the sport. Of course, Busch wants to be able to win the current 2021 NASCAR Series Cup but the current online odds available for him to do that does not quite sit as favorable as he would have hoped at the start of the season, which is perhaps why a move away is being sought.

With that news, Chip Ganassi Racing could be looking for alternative options ahead of the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series, but there are a number of replacements that they could look towards if Busch does decide to leave and switch teams.

Matt DiBenedetto

Matt DiBenedetto might not be the right fit for Chip Ganassi when looking at him on paper, however, the driver could be a cheap acquisition and one that offers the team plenty of experience.

There will be plenty who will be concerned by the fact that he has not won a race since 2011, although the NASCAR driver has had numerous second-place finishes since. Furthermore, he is currently in a contract year with Wood Brothers Racing, which could make him available, especially given that he was considered releasable last season.

Noah Gragson

For many, there will only be one name that Chip Ganassi Racing should be looking at and one that fits what the team as all about. Noah Gragson is that driver, as the 22-year-old Las Vegas native is one of the most talented, young drivers currently on the circuit and has shown he can dominate as he is a proven winner; something that Chip Ganassi Racing like and tend to look for in a driver.

Gragson is an enigma that many may look to avoid, but if Chip Ganassi Racing want to replace Busch adequately, then they will be pushed to find someone better than the Las Vegas native.

Ryan Newman

As mentioned, Chip Ganassi Racing continues to bring in winners, which is why Ryan Newman might be one of the best options available to the NASCAR team. He has been able to achieve a total of 18 wins so far in his NASCAR Cup Series career, including a Daytona 500 win back in 2008.

The Roush Fenway Racing team driver is also in a contract year with his current team, although it would seem that he is on his way out as the team appears to have already found themselves a replacement for him in Brad Keselowski.

The 43-year-old has no plans to retire, which means Chip Ganassi Racing could look to take him on, with the driver also suggesting that he still has plenty that he wants to achieve, such as winning a championship. That ambition could be a great thing for the team and that could prove to be the perfect ingredients for both driver and NASCAR team.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of

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  1. My top choice for the #1 ride doesn’t show up on here, but could be just as compelling a selection as the other drivers listed…

    Zane Smith

    He’s young (cheap), a winner on every level he’s competed on (Chip likes winners™️), and is currently paired up with a Cup Series-winning former Ganassi crew chief who sings his praises about how mature a driver Zane is for his age. Could they move up together? That would be my hope.

    As for where everyone else ends up, I have Busch going to 23XI, MattyDi re-upping with WBR, Newman getting shipped off to Front Row Motorsports’ #38 to replace a one-and-done Anthony Alfredo (Fast Pasta, indeed), and Gragson staying affiliated with JRM, either in the Xfinity #9, or the potential Cup startup that’s been rumored (#88?).



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