Reddick chases 2nd Xfinity title with Cup future secured

(AP Photo/Michael Conroy)

By DAN GELSTON

AP Sports Writer

DOVER, Del. (AP) Tyler Reddick is ready to make the jump from Xfinity Series champ to Cup Series regular.

Reddick, the defending champion in NASCAR's second-tier developmental series, has been promoted to NASCAR's Cup Series with Richard Childress Racing next season to replace Daniel Hemric. Hemric was told last month he would not be retained for a second season.

The 23-year-old Reddick has five wins in Xfinity this season and remains in the hunt for a second straight title. He is third in the standings headed into Saturday's first elimination race in that series' playoffs.

"The more starts you make, the more confident you'll grow," Reddick said Friday at Dover International Speedway.

Reddick made two Cup starts this season at Daytona and Kansas for Childress, but said his chances of another one before the season ends are "slim to none."

"To get the cars ready and give it the best effort possible, it would be pretty tough to do something like that this time of year," Reddick said. "My focus is remaining on the playoffs. If I was going to do a Cup race, my focus wouldn't even be fully on that, as crazy as it sounds. The Xfinity Series and winning a second championship is more important to me than just a one-time Cup race, as wild as that does sound."

Childress last month compared Reddick to a young Cale Yarborough, the Hall of Famer tied for sixth on NASCAR's all-time wins list with Jimmie Johnson at 83 victories.

Hemric got just one year in the No. 8 Chevrolet before Childress made the change. The native of Kannapolis was given the No. 8 that is part of the Earnhardt family, the most celebrated residents of the city. But Hemric has just two top-10 finishes, is ranked 25th in the standings and failed to make the playoffs.

He is considered a candidate for the open seat at JTG Daugherty Racing that opened last week when Chris Buescher jumped to Roush Fenway Racing.

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Updated October 4, 2019

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