Tony Stewart has promoted Chase Briscoe to the Cup Series for 2021, as it was announced on Tuesday that the 25-year-old is set to replace Clint Bowyer in the No. 14 at Stewart-Haas Racing. Briscoe currently drives the No. 98 for Stewart in the Xfinity Series. where he's amassed nine wins and is currently competing for a championship.
The position became available once Bowyer announced that he'd be retiring at the end of the season to pursue a career in TV broadcasting. Briscoe said that Stewart called him months prior to Bowyer's retirement to let him know that eventually the No. 14 would be his.
"I knew that Clint was obviously in a contract year and it was going to be his decision whether to come back or not," Briscoe said after signing the deal. "I was confident but I didn't think it was going to happen this coming year."
Bowyer's transition to the booth was rumored, but not made official until early October. Less than two weeks after Bowyer's retirement announcement, the pen was to the paper. Back in August, Stewart told CBS Sports that it was only a matter of time before Briscoe was in a Cup car.
"When he makes a mistake he will spend more time reflecting on that mistake unfortunately than he does the rest of the good things he does all day but that's kind of the way I was in my career too," Stewart said on Tuesday. "I felt like minimizing mistakes were the key to winning races and championships. That's also the same mindset that Chase has as well."
Off the track, Briscoe has had to overcome a lot this season as well. Back in May it was revealed that Briscoe's wife suffered a miscarriage of their first child. Briscoe found out about the miscarriage at the track on a FaceTime call with his wife at her 12-week exam.
"It was unlike anything I had heard or felt before as I watched my wife's face turn from joy to instant depression," Briscoe said in an Instagram post shortly after hearing the news. "I'll never understand why it happen (sic) but I know that God has a plan and even though we don't understand it He has a reason."
That same week, Briscoe got in the racecar and went on to win the Xfinity Series race at Darlington. After the win, he dedicated it to his wife and said that he was crying in the racecar.
"I couldn't imagine not going to the race track and getting in the car just because it allowed me to kind of get away from everything," said Briscoe Tuesday, reflecting on that race. "You just want to get in the car and just do your thing. You want to forget about all that's going on in the world because you're almost in your own bubble when you're in the racecar. You're not focused on the outside world, whatever you're dealing with at home or whatever so I think that's been huge and obviously the success has been great this year. Just being able to have that getaway has been great."
Briscoe will make his debut in the No. 14 at the 2021 Daytona 500 in February.