Legacy Motor Club has announced another big change.
The race team, which is co-owned by NASCAR great Jimmie Johnson and has ties to the sport’s origins with Richard Petty as an ambassador, announced on Tuesday that it will partner with Toyota beginning with the 2024 NASCAR Cup Series season.
Legacy Motor Club will finish out the year aligned with Chevrolet.
“Maury Gallagher (other co-owner) and I are very excited about the partnership with Toyota and TRD beginning in 2024,” Johnson said in a statement. “We admire and respect the level at which Toyota conducts their business in this sport and look forward to forging a new legacy for the future.”
Johnson, a seven-time Cup Series champion, made a name for himself throughout his career in Chevrolet cars.
“I will always be appreciative to Chevrolet and everything we have accomplished together,” Johnson continued. “I’m so thankful they took a chance on a kid from California so long ago and proud that the history books will forever memorialize our record-breaking success we shared.”
Legacy Motor Club has two cars in the Cup Series. Noah Gragson runs in the 42 car, and Erik Jones (last year’s Southern 500 winner) runs in the 43 car.
Tuesday’s announcement marks the latest change in a whirlwind of changes for Legacy Motor Club. Johnson bought an ownership stake in the race team — then called Petty GMS — in 2022. The race team then changed its name to Legacy Motor Club, taking the “Petty” name out of NASCAR’s top series.
Richard Petty, formerly a co-owner for Petty GMS and the all-time Cup Series wins leader who no longer has ownership stake in the organization, explained ahead of the Daytona 500 that a lot of the change ushered in by Johnson’s arrival was “confusing.”
Petty, 85, also was asked if Johnson and his management team are in charge of all major decisions at the time — to which Petty replied with a chuckle, “Yes, it does.”
“Jimmie’s looking not necessarily at what’s going to happen this year,” Petty said in February, “but he’s trying to lay a foundation for four or five years where he’s still young enough that he’s going to be around for a long, long time.”
For Toyota, this move adds depth the OEM has been seeking, said president of Toyota Racing Development David Wilson.
The eight full-time Toyota Camry TRD entries are the most Toyota supported entries to compete in the NASCAR Cup Series since 2011, per a release.
“Jimmie Johnson and Maury Gallagher have impressed us with their long-term vision and commitment to building a championship caliber organization,” Wilson said in a statement. “More importantly, their character and values are aligned with ours and our current Cup Series partners, Joe Gibbs Racing and 23XI Racing. Of course, we also look forward to being reunited with our old friends, Erik Jones and Noah Gragson.”