Legacy Motor Club to switch manufacturers, field Toyotas in 2024
Legacy Motor Club announced Tuesday that the organization will switch its manufacturer alignment from Chevrolet to Toyota for the 2024 NASCAR Cup Series season, marking the latest significant shift for the two-car operation.
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The move promises to provide Toyota a boost in numbers in Cup Series competition. The Japanese automaker stands to grow from six chartered cars on the grid to eight next year with the addition of Legacy M.C., which would join Joe Gibbs Racing (four cars) and 23XI Racing (two cars) on the Toyota roster.
Legacy Motor Club has evolved rapidly in recent years, through mergers, shifts in ownership and growth. That began with the launch of Petty GMS Motorsports in December 2021, a two-car outfit formed when GMS Racing team owner Maury Gallagher purchased a majority stake in Richard Petty’s Cup Series operation. The organization took on Jimmie Johnson — like Petty, a seven-time Cup champion — as a part-owner last November, and that group rebranded as Legacy M.C. in January.
Legacy Motor Club currently fields two full-time cars in the Cup Series — the No. 43 Chevrolet driven by Erik Jones, and the No. 42 Chevrolet for rookie Noah Gragson. Johnson has driven the team’s No. 84 entry in a partial schedule this year, returning to NASCAR after retiring from full-time Cup competition after the 2020 campaign.
Jones and Gragson both entered NASCAR’s national ranks as prospects in the Toyota pipeline before landing with Chevrolet teams. Both drivers won races for Kyle Busch Motorsports — then a top developmental affiliate for Toyota in the Craftsman Truck Series — and Jones marched to the truck tour’s championship for KBM in 2015 before moving up the stock-car racing ladder.
David Wilson, president of Toyota Racing Development, has said in recent years that the manufacturer had chosen to be strategic about bolstering its numbers, opting for “quality over quantity” for its Cup Series entries. The carmaker grew from five full-time cars to six when 23XI Racing expanded ahead of the 2022 season. Joe Gibbs Racing, Toyota’s flagship team, shares a technical alliance with 23XI, and its pit crews train under the same organizational banner.
Chevrolet leads the manufacturer standings with a series-best seven wins. Toyota has three victories — including the most recent, with Martin Truex Jr. at Dover — and Ford has one.
Legacy Motor Club‘s Jones is 24th in points and Gragson 32nd. Johnson’s pair of Cup starts this year — in the Daytona 500 and at Circuit of The Americas — were both shortened by crashes.