Germain Racing drops Casey Mears, signs Ty Dillon for 2017 season
The 24-year-old Dillon will drive the No. 13 Germain car fulltime next season.
Casey Mears is out as driver of Germain Racing’s No. 13 car next season and Ty Dillon is in, the single-car NASCAR Cup Series team announced Monday.
Dillon has raced fulltime in the Xfinity Series since 2014 for a team owned by his grandfather, Richard Childress, whose Cup team supplies Germain with engines and technical data. The 24-year-old Dillon has one victory in 111 Xfinity starts and never finished worse than fifth in the yearend point standings.
That Dillon is joining an RCR affiliate is not a surprise. With Dillon ready for a promotion and RCR, which fields cars for Austin Dillon (Ty’s older brother), Paul Menard and Ryan Newman, unable to expand, it made sense for Childress to farm Ty Dillon out to partner organization. As part of the agreement, Germain and RCR will be closer aligned with Germain acting as a de facto fourth RCR team.
Geico will continue to sponsor the No. 13 car, as it has since 2010.
“Bringing Ty onboard is an exciting opportunity for us and we are committed to giving him all the resources he needs to reach his full potential,” team owner Bob Germain said in a statement. “He’s a very talented driver and first class young man. I’m looking forward to working with him, as well as expanding our relationship with RCR.”
Mears joined Germain in the middle portion of the 2010 season and gradually helped the mid-size team improve its results. In successive years from 2011-2015 he ranked 31st, 29th, 24th, 26th and 23rd in points, and recorded five of Germain’s six top-10 finishes. But Mears regressed this season, falling to 28th in points with a best finish of 12th (twice).
What the journeymen Mears, 38, does next is unclear. Unless he’s able to acquire and bring sponsorship with him, landing another fulltime Cup Series opportunity is unlikely.
“I want to thank Casey Mears for everything he’s done for our race team over the past six years,” Germain said. “He’s been an integral part of our growth and a great representative for Geico and our many partners.”