Ryan Preece will serve as the reserve driver for Stewart-Haas Racing, the team announced Thursday morning.
The 31-year-old Preece will run a mix of races across Cup, Xfinity and Camping World Trucks and also perform simulator work. He will be the default driver if any of SHR’s drivers are unable to compete due to COVID-19 or any other reason.
Preece is scheduled to run 12 races this season – two in Cup, three in Xfinity and seven in Trucks. His Cup and Xfinity races will be in coordination with SHR and its technical alliance partners. His truck starts will be with David Gilliland Racing.
Rick Ware Racing announced Jan. 13 that Preece would drive the team’s No. 15 car at the Feb. 6 Busch Light Clash at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Rick Ware Racing is a technical partner with Stewart-Haas Racing.
Preece has competed full-time in Cup the past three seasons with JTG Daugherty Racing.
“This is a unique setup, but I feel like it provides me with the best opportunity to win races and contribute to a championship-caliber team while expanding my racing experience,” Preece said in a statement from the team. “I’m a racer, and Stewart-Haas Racing is a team built by racers. They measure success by wins. Whether I’m in the simulator, in one of their cars, or in a Ford Mustang or Ford F-150 for another team, I’m here to help SHR and Ford win.”
Preece’s two Cup points races will be:
May 1 at Dover Motor Speedway
May 29 Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
Preece’s three Xfinity races will be:
April 2 at Richmond Raceway
May 28 at Charlotte Motor Speedway
June 25 at Nashville Superspeedway
Preece’s seven Truck races will be:
March 4 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway
March 19 at Atlanta Motor Speedway
May 6 at Darlington Raceway
May 20 at Texas Motor Speedway
June 24 at Nashville Superspeedway (where he is the defending race winner)
July 23 at Pocono Raceway
Sept. 9 at Kansas Raceway
“Ryan is a versatile wheelman with a racer’s mentality who fits extremely well within our culture at Stewart-Haas Racing,” said Greg Zipadelli, SHR vice president of competition, in a statement from the team. “Between the amount of testing and development work we’re doing with the Next Gen car this year, his added insights and time in the simulator will make us better by allowing us to learn faster.
“Plus, we’re still dealing with COVID. As much as we all want it to be over, it’s not. We needed a more robust plan in the event COVID sidelines one of our drivers. We have that now with Ryan.”