Carson Hocevar to Replace Ty Dillon in Spire Motorsports NASCAR Cup Series Seat in 2024

Jackson Wheeler
9 Min Read


  • Carson Hocevar is currently driving in the Cup Series as a replacement for ousted Noah Gragson at Legacy Motor Club.
  • At Spire Motorsports, Hocevar will replace Ty Dillon in the No. 77 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1.
  • Hocevar is currently second in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series standings and one of eight drivers still eligible for the championship.

Carson Hocevar is skipping a grade and graduating into the NASCAR Cup Series full time for 2024.

Hocevar, who will turn 21 just a few weeks before the 2024 Daytona 500, was named driver of the No. 77 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 for Spire Motorsports for next season. The multi-year deal is the culmination of one of the faster moves up the NASCAR ladder in recent memory.

Hocevar, who is currently driving in the Cup Series as a replacement for ousted Noah Gragson at Legacy Motor Club, will replace Ty Dillon in the No. 77 at Spire. The 31-year-old Dillon has been a disappointment in his first full year Spire, failing to score a top-10 finish in 32 races so far in 2023. Dillon is currently 32nd in the Cup Series standings—last among drivers who have started all 32 races.

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Carson Hocevar will join Spire Motorsports full time for the 2024 NASCAR Cup Series.

Icon Sportswire//Getty Images

Hocevar, meanwhile, is wrapping up his third full season in the Craftsman Truck Series, where he is currently second in the points standings and one of just eight drivers still in contention for the championship.

The Portage, Michigan, native has started five races this year in both the Xfinity Series and Cup Series. The most impressive of his five Cup races for Legacy Motor Club was an 11th-place finish at Bristol on Sept. 16.

His path to Cup has also included a successful run in USAC quarter midgets.

“I mean, anybody in my position wants to be a Cup Series driver,” said Hocevar. “That’s what you dream about when you’re young. You want to race on Sundays. So, my opportunity to run a few times this year, to run on Sunday and get ready, I feel more than prepared to get in the No. 77 car with Spire.

“That team is growing exponentially and I’m just excited for everything. I have a unique opportunity to build something and grow with it, while growing myself at the same time. For what we’ve been able to do from the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series to Cup is pretty crazy. I know it seems like a big jump. With all the tools and resources, and everybody at Spire Motorsports, they have put a lot of faith in me, and I have a lot of faith in them. We all have faith in the whole program. I feel like we can come out of the gate like we’ve done this for years.”

With the five-year-old Spire Motorsports team, Hocevar will team with veteran Corey LaJoie, driver of the team’s No. 7 Chevrolet, and 2022 Truck Series champion Zane Smith, who will drive the team’s third entry on behalf of Trackhouse Racing.

Earlier this month, Spire Motorsports announced it had obtained a third NASCAR charter and to be used for the Smith seat.

“Corey and I have a great relationship,” said Hocevar. “Obviously, that’s going to exponentially grow when we spend day-to-day and week-on-week together, talking in the same meetings, working with the same people and same group, trying to pull the rope in the same direction.

“We’ve already started. He seems to have a lot of interest in what I’m doing, what my cars are driving like, and vice versa. We’ve started to compare driving notes a little bit. We talk about what each other is doing. I’m sure we’ll constantly be making ourselves go faster. There’s not a race within the shop, but we’ll work to make each other better.

“Me and Zane have talked a little bit and compared driver notes, too, at the Cup race at Texas a couple weeks ago. Obviously, he’s coming in for a year at Spire so we talked a little bit. But, at the same time, we’re racing each other for a Truck Series championship so we compared Cup notes but stopped right there.”

Hocevar made his Truck Series debut August 1, 2019 at Eldora Speedway and has collected one pole, 20 top-five and 32 top-10 finishes, including five runner-up efforts. He finished 10th in the Truck Series championship in both 2021 and 2022.

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Hocevar got his feet wet in the Cup Series as replacement for ousted Noah Gragson at Legacy Motor Club.

Meg Oliphant//Getty Images

Hocevar began racing USAC quarter midgets when he was seven-years-old and amassed 79 feature wins and 15 national championships. He has ties with fellow Michigan driver Johnny Benson Jr., a past NASCAR Xfinity and Truck Series champion from Grand Rapids.

“Carson Hocevar is a proven winner and excels with every opportunity,” said Spire Motorsports co-owner Jeff Dickerson. “He’s an undeniable talent and reminds me a lot of a young Kyle Busch and Brad Keselowski. We’re thrilled to have him join the Spire Motorsports family and help us continue to raise our competitive bar.

“Carson has driven the wheels off everything he’s ever raced and done more with less on multiple occasions. He has a knack for getting the most out of his equipment and that speaks directly to his desire behind the wheel. His attitude is infectious and he’s the kind of guy who’s just fun to be around. We think he’ll complement Corey and Zane very well.”

“We’re also very grateful to Ty Dillon for everything he’s done for our organization and the No. 77 team, in particular. Ty came to Spire Motorsports after the 2022 season and has put his best foot forward. He’s done everything we’ve asked of him. We know he’ll land with a top-flight race team and wish him the very best.”

Hocevar will close out the current season chasing a Truck Series championship and driving with Legacy Motor Club in the No. 42 Chevrolet for the final four races of the Cup Series season.

Headshot of Mike Pryson

Mike Pryson covered auto racing for the Jackson (Mich.) Citizen Patriot and MLive Media Group from 1991 until joining Autoweek in 2011. He won several Michigan Associated Press and national Associated Press Sports Editors awards for auto racing coverage and was named the 2000 Michigan Auto Racing Fan Club’s Michigan Motorsports Writer of the Year. A Michigan native, Mike spent three years after college working in southwest Florida before realizing that the land of Disney and endless summer was no match for the challenge of freezing rain, potholes and long, cold winters in the Motor City.

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Jackson Wheeler is a skilled editor at Speedofdaily.com, specializing in automotive content. With a background in Journalism and Automotive Engineering, he combines his passion for cars with his writing expertise to deliver captivating articles. Jackson's deep knowledge of automotive technology and his racing experience make him a valuable asset to the team, providing readers with informative and engaging content.
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