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NASCAR Cup: Matt DiBenedetto gets one more year in #21 before Cindric takes over in 2022

BRISTOL, TENNESSEE – JULY 15: Matt DiBenedetto, driver of the #21 Menards/FVP Ford, waits on the grid prior to the NASCAR Cup Series All-Star Open at Bristol Motor Speedway on July 15, 2020 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

Matt DiBenedetto’s status as driver of the No. 21 Wood Brothers Racing Ford has been extended a year, as the race team announced Thursday that DiBenedetto will continue to drive the No. 21 next year. But a report from NBC Sports, it will be DiBenedetto’s last in the No. 21, as he’ll be replaced by NASCAR Xfinity Series championship contender Austin Cindric in 2022.

“It’s such an honor to be able to continue to drive for Wood Brothers Racing and have another year to grow with this organization,” DiBenedetto said. “I am excited to learn from our 2020 notebook, and I’m confident that with a full season under our belt and working together as a team, we will produce even better results. I also want to thank Ford Performance and Team Penske for their efforts in making this happen. These types of decisions take a lot of time, as we all know there are a lot of factors in play. All three groups want to make the best decisions for everyone involved and I’m appreciative to have the opportunity to continue to compete for such a legendary race team.”

DiBenedetto made the 2020 NASCAR Cup Series playoffs, the first playoff appearance for both himself and Wood Brothers Racing, but was eliminated in the opening round. He has three top-five finishes, including two second-place showings, through the first 31 of 36 points-paying races this year, his first in the No. 21.

“Matt has been able to find success this year under very difficult circumstances,” Wood Brothers Racing co-owner and President Eddie Wood said. “Since he joined our team, he only had limited time working with our group due to the pandemic. While it’s been an entirely new organization, he found a way to consistently run up front and make the playoffs. We have learned a lot together this year, and we look forward to continuing to build with Matt in 2021.”

DiBenedetto has been in the Cup Series since 2015, also driving for teams including BK Racing, Go FAS Racing and Leavine Family Racing. In all, he has 207-career Cup Series starts, resulting in six top-fives and 19 top-10 finishes.

Cindric is in his third season of full-time Xfinity Series races. He has five wins this year, second only to Chase Briscoe, as driver of the No. 22 Team Penske Ford. He has made 95-career starts in the Xfinity Series, resulting in seven wins, 38 top-fives and 59 top-10 finishes.

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Posted by on October 9, 2020. Filed under Breaking News,Cup Series,Featured,NASCAR. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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