DARLINGTON, S.C. — The 2020 outlook for Richard Childress Racing’s fleet of drivers has yet to take shape. Conversations with two key players Friday afternoon at Darlington Raceway didn’t make that long-term forecast much clearer.
Reigning Xfinity Series champ Tyler Reddick has shown he’s primed for Sunday duty in NASCAR’s top division. Cup Series rookie Daniel Hemric has struggled to find results to show for his performance in an uneven first season. Both indicated that efforts were in full swing to get their deals done, but the full picture of what those deals would be hasn’t been made public.
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“Uncertain. Everyone’s working really hard to make something happen,” said Reddick, who has four wins this year and leads the Xfinity standings. “A lot up in the air still, but obviously as it kind of goes without saying, if you get too caught up in thoughts of next year, it could take away from what’s right in front of you. For me, that’s just trying to make our car a little better this weekend.”
Reddick is among the favorites for Saturday’s Sport Clips Haircuts VFW 200 (4 p.m. ET, NBC, MRN, SiriusXM) at the 1.366-mile track, which is his immediate focus. The longer-term focus is where the 23-year-old driver may land next season. Pressed on whether that destination might include the realm outside of the Childress organization, Reddick was reluctant to say.
“All the guys at RCR have been great. Everyone’s working hard to try and figure something out, but it’s at the point where I’m honestly not going to talk about it,” Reddick said. “That’s just where I’m at. I don’t want to say something that could take away from somebody else or get something pointed in the wrong direction, so I’m just not going to talk about it.”
Hemric has been the subject of intense questioning about his future in RCR’s No. 8 Chevrolet in recent weeks. In an Aug. 19 appearance on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio, Hemric described his contract situation as “iffy” but that an agreement for next year was 90% done.
Hemric ranks 25th in the Monster Energy Series standings, not far behind his 23rd-place teammate, Austin Dillon. Though he’d acknowledged the lack of clarity for 2020, Hemric affirmed that his commitment to RCR remained strong.
“Deep down in my heart, I know that Richard Childress and all the folks at RCR, and myself included and all of our partners are doing everything we can to honor agreements that we made with each other to compete again at a high level in 2020,” Hemric said. “Lot of variables involved, but I know this logo I’m wearing of RCR on my chest has my back and I have their back and that’s what we’re working toward.”