CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Chase Elliott is changing numbers next season.
Hendrick Motorsports announced today that the number 9 will move to Hendrick Motorsports next Season with Chase Elliott at the wheel.
“I wasn’t sure I’d ever drive the 9 again,” Elliott said in a news release from Hendrick. “It’s a huge deal to my family and everyone back home, and I hope all of our fans will be pumped to see it back on the racetrack. There’s a legacy attached to that number, and I want to carry it on. I think it’s awesome that Hendrick Motorsports and NAPA wanted to do this. It’s impossible not to be excited.”
The no. 5 will no longer be on a car at Hendrick next season, as the 9 will replace it. William Byron, who joins Hendrick Motorsports next season in place of Kasey Kahne, will drive the 24, formerly driven by Jeff Gordon.
“Jeff and Jimmie (Johnson) are the drivers I’ve always watched most closely and tried to learn from,” Byron said. “I didn’t think I could be more motivated, but when Mr. Hendrick called to tell me, it took things to another level. I have so much respect for all the people who have contributed to the success of the 24. I know it’s rare to have the chance to be part of something like this. I’m going to make the most of it.”
Jimmie Johnson will continue to drive the 48 car, and Alex Bowman will take over the 88 currently driven by Dale Earnhardt Jr., who will retire at the end of the season.
The 9 was most recently piloted by Marcos Ambrose for Richard Petty Motorsports.
Elliott took to Twitter Tuesday to say how excited he was about the number change next year.
— Chase Elliott (@chaseelliott) August 29, 2017