Parker Kligerman not returning to Gaunt Brothers Racing

by Justin Nguyen

Even if he wasn’t a full-time driver, Parker Kligerman‘s time with Gaunt Brothers Racing has come to an end. On Friday, amid reports of the team going to a full 2020 NASCAR Cup Series schedule with Daniel Suárez, Kligerman stated he will not return to the team.

Suárez, who lost his ride with Stewart-Haas Racing after the 2019 season, has long been rumoured to be in talks with GBR. Although he has not confirmed his 2020 plans, reported an announcement could take place on Monday. When the article was posted on Reddit, Kligerman confirmed the news in the comments section.

“Such is racing,” he wrote. “GBR and Toyota were incredibly gracious and kind to give me a second chance at the top. I wishing them the best of luck, great chance for them to go full-time for the first time.”

Since 2018, Kligerman had raced on a limited basis in the Cup Series with GBR after débuting at the Coca-Cola 600. In eighteen total starts in the team’s #96 Toyota Camry, including fourteen in 2019, he recorded a best run of fifteenth at the 2019 Daytona 500 and fall Talladega Superspeedway races. Both finishes are also the best in his Cup career.

GBR began competing in the Cup Series at the 2017 Daytona 500 with D.J. Kennington. Other drivers who have run the #96 include Jeffrey Earnhardt and Jesse Little in 2018, and Drew Herring at the 2019 season finale. Herring, a Toyota Racing Development test driver, was making his maiden Cup start. In thirty-eight total races, Kennington holds the team’s best finish of thirteenth at the 2018 summer Daytona event.

Kligerman, who currently works as a motorsport analyst for NBC and was recently covering the Dakar Rally, has enjoyed success in NASCAR’s feeder series. He has two wins in the Gander Trucks (both at Talladega), while his lone full season in the now-Xfinity Series ended with a ninth-place points finish.

When asked by another Reddit user about potentially racing on the road courses in the Xfinity Series, he responded, “We will see, as driver who has no personal funding. I’ve been on borrowed time for years, haha.

“In the mean time I still have a jam-packed schedule between broadcasting, TV show, Youtube show, businesses and eSport team. I liked the GBR deal because it was building something, I liked my truck team because we showed up to win. But to race for the sake of racing, I am not interested.”

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