Big Blow for Dale Earnhardt Jr as JR Motorsports Central Cog Joins Rival Team

Published 11/12/2021, 1:09 AM EST
FORT WORTH, TX – NOVEMBER 03: Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Nationwide/Justice League Chevrolet, stands in the garage area during practice for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series AAA Texas 500 at Texas Motor Speedway on November 3, 2017 in Fort Worth, Texas. (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images for Texas Motor Speedway)

Earlier, the JR Motorsports team suffered a big blow to their championship hopes in 2022. This is because veteran engineer Allen Hart has joined a rival team. Owing to his experience, Hart has used his engineering experience in NASCAR to guide the Dale Earnhardt Jr-owned outfit to success. Now, Hart will join Sam Hunt Racing as a crew chief and technical director.


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“I’m so proud to add Allen to our young, blossoming organization,” Hunt said. “Allen is an experienced, race-winning engineer and leader at the Xfinity level, and he will be a huge asset to our organization for years to come. We are ready to provide him with this opportunity to continue building our program, as well as our working relationship with TRD and the current staff we have. Andrew [Abbott] has done a great job for our program this year, and he is still a large asset to our team.”

Who is JR Motorsports engineer Allen Hart?


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Aside from his JR Motorsports stint, Hart has worked with multiple teams over the course of his career. Among them are Turner Motorsports, Team Penske and JR Motorsports itself, working with Justin Allgaier. Since then, he and Allgaier have been in contention for wins every year.

Feb 27, 2021; Miami, FL, USA; NASCAR Xfinity Series driver Justin Allgaier (7) races ahead of Tyler Reddick (23) during the Contender Boats 250 at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Hart confessed that he is eager to start working with the Sam Hunt Racing team. This is largely because he and the team owner are familiar with each other and he has followed the outfit’s progress. Hart acknowledged that he always wanted to become a crew chief, so it is a dream come true. The engineer insisted that he is truly grateful for JR Motorsports’ faith in him over the last eight seasons.

Of course, the likes of Dale Earnhardt will have been bitterly disappointed to lose a person of Hart’s calibre. Now, all that JR Motorsports can do is move on and adapt without him.


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Dhruv George

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Dhruv George is a senior Motorsports author for EssentiallySports, having authored nearly 12000 articles spanning different sports like F1, NASCAR, Tennis, NFL, and eSports. He graduated with a PG Diploma in Journalism from the Xavier Institute of Communications. Dhruv has also conducted interviews with F1 driver Pierre Gasly and Moto2 rider Tony Arbolino.