Josh Berry finalizing contract; Possible Harvick replacement?
KANNAPOLIS, N.C. (BVM) – The NASCAR Cup Series has provided plenty of work for Hendrick Motorsports super-sub Josh Berry who has been cast into a much larger role than even he would have anticipated so far through 2023.
With injuries taking both Chase Elliott and Alex Bowman out of action, Berry has quickly shown just what he can bring to the Cup Series with one top-five finish and three top-10 finishes. The fill-in driver for the No. 9 and No. 48 cars has garnered attention throughout the year, most recently picking up a win in the NASCAR All-Star Open to lock down a spot in the All-Star race.
With a chance to land a spot in the NASCAR Cup Series for 2024, Berry is close to finalizing a deal with Stewart-Haas Racing according to Jordan Bianchi at The Athletic.
The chance to join the team comes at a time when legendary NASCAR driver Kevin Harvick is in the midst of his final year on the track. With an expectation that Berry will join the Stewart-Haas Racing team, the chance to possibly take over Harvick’s No. 4 car may be in the works. Berry is expected to be paired with crew chief Rodney Childers who led Harvick’s team for the past 10 years, and earlier this month, was expected to finalize a contract with Harvick’s management team.
“I’ve learned a lot about myself in the last five weeks,” Berry said during the weekend of Elliott’s return. “It’s definitely different than Xfinity racing, but I feel like I was thrown into a pretty difficult situation, and I think we left all very positive about the experience. I think it just did a lot for my confidence. I’m really grateful for that experience and what it did for me.
“We’ll see what the future holds. I’d love to be racing a Cup car, but right now I’m just trying to stay focused on this (JRM) team. We keep working hard building fast race cars, we’ll win races and I’ll probably be in the Cup Series.”
With Bowman making his return back to the No. 48 car, Berry will continue his full-time role with the JR Motorsports Xfinity Series team where he drives the No. 8 car. He is currently in fourth place in the point standings through 11 races.