Piecing the puzzle: Noah Gragson signs with Front Row as the third SHR driver to find a new ride

MADISON, ILLINOIS - JUNE 01: Noah Gragson, driver of the #10 SERVPRO Ford, looks on during qualifying for the NASCAR Cup Series Enjoy Illinois 300 at WWT Raceway on June 01, 2024 in Madison, Illinois. (Photo by Logan Riely/Getty Images)

Noah Gragson will drive for Front Row Motorsports for the 2025 NASCAR Cup Series season, the team announced Wednesday. Gragson signed a multi-year agreement with the team.

When the news dropped that Gragson’s current team, Stewart-Haas Racing, was closing its doors at the end of the 2024 season, its drivers were left in a precarious position. Gragson himself explained that, though he heard the same rumors as everyone else in the industry, the news was still a shock and ‘blow.’

Since then, he’s been searching for a new ride. He brings an impressive resume with him: Gragson racked up 13 Xfinity Series wins and a series runner-up before moving up to the Cup Series. This year at Stewart-Haas, he’s racked up six top-ten finishes, and has been the best-running Stewart-Haas car on multiple occasions.

Conveniently, Gragson will be joining a team that inherited part of the SHR legacy. Just after Tony Stewart and Gene Haas announced the closure of their team, Front Row announced that it had purchased a charter, apparently from them. That, and the departure of longtime Front Row driver Michael McDowell, meant Front Row had two seats open.

“We feel that this is a great opportunity and the perfect time to bring Noah to our organization,” said Bob Jenkins, the owner of Front Row Motorsports, in a press release. “He has just the right amount of experience in the NASCAR Cup Series to breakout and become a winner for years to come. This season, Noah has started to get the finishes, and race consistently up front, which was expected from him.

“Joining our team, staying with Ford Performance, and welcoming him to our partners, we are only going to accelerate his opportunity to win races and compete in the playoffs. This is the driver that we want to help get us more wins.”

Gragson will be driving alongside Todd Gilliland, who will be staying with Front Row on a new multi-year contract, and a to-be-announced third driver. Gilliland and Gragson are both young drivers, but Jenkins clearly sees potential in both of them. 24-year-old Gilliland has said he’s ready to carry the torch and lead as the most experienced driver at the team.

For Gragson, the move is also about realizing his potential. He’s taking advantage of his second chance – after being suspended by NASCAR and released by then-team Legacy Motor Club for ‘liking’ a racially insensitive image on social media – with Stewart-Haas this year and has exceeded expectations.

Front Row Motorsports has become a team that can regularly compete up front and has announced a technical alliance with Penske and a move to ‘Tier One’ status within the Ford Performance organization.

“I think a lot of people have seen the growth of Front Row Motorsports over the past several seasons in the NASCAR Cup Series,” Gragson said. “This team, with Ford Performance, has shown it is capable of winning and wants to win more.

Meeting Bob [Jenkins] and Jerry [Freeze, General Manager], there is a determination and plan to continue to grow and compete against the absolute best. There is a strong commitment on their part, and I am ready to give it my best next season.

“Until that time, I want to say that I’m staying focused on the task at hand at Stewart-Haas Racing to finish the season with intentions of racing for wins with them.”

More details, including the car number, crew chief, and sponsors will be announced at a later date, as well as the third Front Row Motorsports driver.

Gragson will continue at Stewart-Haas for the rest of the season, alongside his teammates who have also been working on deals of their own. Chase Briscoe was announced as the replacement for a retiring Martin Truex in the No. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota, and Josh Berry will pilot the famed No. 21 for the Wood Brothers. That leaves only Ryan Preece of SHR’s current Cup lineup without a confirmed ride for next season.

Owen Johnson