Austin Hill‘s NASCAR Xfinity Series rookie season has been blazing through with two wins and a sixth-place points position after twenty races. To reward him for his successes, Richard Childress Racing has given him a chance at a Cup Series start for the first time as he enters Sunday’s race at Michigan International Speedway in a newly opened #33 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1.
“As a kid growing up in this sport, getting the chance to run a NASCAR Cup Series car is the ultimate dream, especially with a team like Richard Childress Racing that has so much history and success,” Hill stated. “I’m so thankful that Richard Childress and everyone at RCR have so much faith in me. It will be a learning weekend for sure, but I’ve had success at Michigan International Speedway in the past and can’t wait to take on the track’s wide, sweeping corners in a NASCAR Cup Series Chevrolet.”
Hill joined RCR for the 2022 season after an eight-win career in the Camping World Truck Series, and immediately made an impact by winning the season opener at Daytona. Another victory came in June at his home track of Atlanta. He has netted thirteen top tens in total and is the only rookie locked into the playoffs, which would guarantee him Rookie of the Year honours (which is set based on final points standing) if it remains that way.
The #33 was last used by Austin Cindric for his part-time Cup campaign with Team Penske in 2021. RCR fielded the number part-time from 2003 to 2008 before Clint Bowyer became its full-timer in 2009. In three seasons driving RCR’s #33, he scored three wins and a best points finish of tenth in Year #2. After Bowyer left for Michael Waltrip Racing in 2012, the #33 retracted to a limited slate for multiple drivers including current RCR Cup driver Austin Dillon.
“Austin Hill has shown talent in every series he’s raced in during his career, so I couldn’t be more excited to have him behind the wheel of a Cup Series car,” commented Childress. “He’s having a strong season in the Xfinity Series, and I know he will be just as competitive and eager to learn behind the wheel of a Cup Series car.”
Hill has three career starts at Michigan, all in the Truck Series from 2018 to 2020. He won the 2019 race.