After spending the last three years competing in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, Josh Berry will be promoted to the pinnacle of NASCAR, the Cup Series, starting in 2024, where he'll pilot the No. 4 for Stewart-Haas Racing.
“I can’t imagine a better opportunity for me – to get in a car that’s been as successful and iconic as the No. 4,” Berry said. “Kevin is a future NASCAR Hall of Famer, and it’s going to be a challenge trying to come after someone so successful. But I know I’m going to have an amazing group of people around me, led by Rodney Childers, to where we can hit the ground running.”
Berry, 32, will serve as the successor to Kevin Harvick, who announced in January that he would be retiring from the sport at the conclusion of the 2023 season. The 60-time NASCAR Cup Series winner has driven for Stewart-Haas Racing since 2014.
“We’re incredibly proud to have Josh Berry begin the next chapter of his racing career in our No. 4 Ford Mustang,” said Tony Stewart, co-owner of SHR with Haas Automation founder Gene Haas. “Kevin Harvick has obviously set a very high bar, but Josh brings maturity, experience and, above all, a winning record to Stewart-Haas Racing. He is the right driver, at the right time, for the No. 4 team and our organization.”
Rodney Childers, who has spent the last decade as crew chief of the No. 4 team at Stewart-Haas Racing, will retain that same position despite the driver change, beginning a new chapter with a new driver.
A native of Hendersonville, Tennessee, Berry spent several years cutting his teeth on short tracks across the United States, in which time he's not only gained a stellar reputation, but several awards and accolades to confirm it.
Currently in the middle of his second full season with JR Motorsports in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, Berry has secured five wins in the last three seasons, a path which began with securing a 12-race deal with the organization in 2021.
“I’m really proud of how I’ve gotten to this point and earned this opportunity,” Berry said. “I don’t like to use the word luck. It’s also been about preparation meeting opportunity. The Xfinity Series win at Martinsville changed my career and allowed us to point toward a full-time season for 2022 where we competed for the championship."
“It’s also been very meaningful to get some opportunities in the Cup Series this year," continued Berry. "I’m proud of how they went, but I cannot wait to drive a Cup car that’s got my name on it.”
This year, those stellar results have resulted in two separate opportunities to compete for Hendrick Motorsports in the NASCAR Cup Series. First subbing for Chase Elliott, who fractured his tibia in March, then for Alex Bowman, who fractured a vertebra in April.
Competing in eight NASCAR Cup Series events - five in the No. 9, three in the No. 48 - Berry was able to impress many with a second-place finish at Richmond, while also picking up top-10 results at Phoenix and Dover.
“Josh Berry has proven himself in the Xfinity Series and this year showed how quickly he can adapt to the cars and the level of competition in the NASCAR Cup Series,” said Greg Zipadelli, chief competition officer, SHR. “He’ll be a rookie in our racecar next year, but he drives like a veteran. He puts in the work to ensure that he’s always ready for the opportunities that come his way, and we’re very happy that his next opportunity is with Stewart-Haas Racing.”
Image Courtesy of Craig White, Racing America