“Not at All”- Team Penske Owner Reveals Why Ryan Blaney Did Not Move to the #2 Car

Published 07/16/2021, 7:32 AM EDT
DAYTONA BEACH, FL – FEBRUARY 17: Ryan Blaney, driver of the #12 Menards/Peak Ford, is introduced before the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series 61st Annual Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 17, 2019 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)


Earlier, news broke that Brad Keselowski was leaving the Team Penske organisation at the end of the season. Naturally, it left a void in the #2 car, which is the team’s marquee.

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In the end, Austin Cindric got the nod to take the vacant seat and make his debut. However, some wondered why the other Penske driver, Ryan Blaney was not considered.

So, team owner Roger Penske opened up on the matter. He said, “Not at all. When you look at it, the history that Blaney’s had in the #12 car.

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“He’s built a brand around the #12 and the sponsors around it. I think the move is the right move and there’s no Austin vs Blaney in the #2 car. I don’t think it was even a question mark for us.”

What does this mean for Ryan Blaney?

With Blaney not going anywhere, he will stick around in the #12 car for another year. Obviously, the driver will be disappointed to not get a berth in the marquee car.

However, he will be determined to see out the 2021 season and another year in the #12 car. Hopefully the 27-year-old finally gets his dues and puts some respect in the #12 car.

DAYTONA BEACH, FLORIDA – FEBRUARY 09: Ryan Blaney, driver of the #12 Menards/Peak Ford, stands on the grid during qualifying for the NASCAR Cup Series 62nd Annual Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 09, 2020 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

It is also worth mentioning that the #22 car also shares a similar status to the #12 car. For now, Ryan Blaney is training all his focus on the remainder of the 2021 season. In terms of the playoff battle, he is comfortably sitting in 8th place and should be able to qualify.

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However, with five races left in the regular season, anything can happen in those races. While it would be farfetched to suggest that he could be dumped out, it remains to be seen how well he will perform in these races.

Nevertheless, he and the rest of the Penske drivers will be highly motivated to take the fight to Joe Gibbs and Hendrick Motorsports.

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Dhruv George

11742 articles

Dhruv George is a senior Formula One and NASCAR analyst 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.

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