Ragan Stepping Back From Full-Time Competition

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Ragan Stepping Back
David Ragan will retire from full-time NASCAR competition at the end of the season. (HHP/Harold Hinson photo)

MOORESVILLE N.C. – David Ragan will step away from full-time NASCAR competition after the conclusion of the season, after 13 straight years at the sport’s highest level.

Ragan, 33, began competing in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series in 2007 with Roush Fenway Racing after finding success in the now NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series. He was also the NASCAR Xfinity Series Sunoco Rookie of the Year that season as well.

The Georgia driver has 457 career starts in the Cup Series heading into Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway, with two wins, 15 top-five and 40 top-10 finishes to his credit.

Ragan’s first top-level victory was with Roush Fenway at Daytona Int’l Speedway in July of 2011, while his most recent Cup win – which came at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway in 2013 – was the first victory for Front Row Motorsports as an organization.

He spent time as a substitute driver for the injured Kyle Busch at Joe Gibbs Racing in 2015, and also served stints at Michael Waltrip Racing and BK Racing as well before rejoining Front Row for the 2017 season. He previously drove for the team from 2012 through 2014.

“I’ve prayed and heavily considered this decision, but for myself and my family, I believe this is the right thing to do,” said Ragan. “I am a husband and a father to two young girls first, and I am a driver second. To compete in what I consider the greatest series in the world, you need full dedication of your time and focus. My children are growing up quickly, and I want to concentrate my time in being the best father and husband I can be.  I feel this is where God is leading my life, and therefore I’m making this decision.

“There aren’t enough words to thank everyone who has helped me in my career and to all the fans who have supported me in this journey,” he added. “It’s not over, but I’m ready to spend more time at home.”

In addition to his Cup Series statistics, Ragan also has two NASCAR Xfinity Series wins and one ARCA Menards Series victory on his resume. Both Xfinity Series triumphs came for Roush Fenway, while the ARCA win was while Ragan was driving for owner Wayne Day.

Front Row Motorsports has fielded three chartered cars this season in the Cup Series: the No. 38 for Ragan, the No. 36 for rookie Matt Tifft and the No. 34 for fellow veteran Michael McDowell.

The organization still plans to field the No. 38 entry next season and will announce plans for that car at a later date. Wednesday, team owner Bob Jenkins’ focus was on thanking Ragan for his contributions to the Front Row operation.

“We admire David for making what I’m sure was a very difficult decision,” said Jenkins. “We also commend him for his reasoning. David has always put family first, and as a father, I understand what it’s like to not be at that game or big event for your child. Throughout his time at Front Row Motorsports, David has always gone beyond what was asked of him – or even volunteering his own time to help grow our team. Now it’s time for him to give some of that back to his family and we totally support that.

“Our doors are always open for David and we’ll miss seeing him every week.”