As Hailie Deegan took the reins of the No. 17 DGR-Crosley Ford for her NASCAR Truck debut at Kansas Speedway on Saturday, Ford Performance announced the driver will run for rookie honors in the series next season.
Deegan, 19, who jumped from Toyota to Ford’s driver development program for 2020, will pilot the No. 4 DGR-Crosley truck for team owner David Gilliland.
“I am excited for this next step in my career with Ford Performance,” said Deegan, who finished 16th on Saturday. “I have raced trucks in the off-road world but to now have the opportunity to race trucks next season in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series is a dream come true.
“I have some great partners already behind me for next season. We have a few primaries still available and I hope that we can fill these up in the coming weeks. I can’t wait for Daytona 2021 to get here.”
Deegan scored a career-high ARCA finish of second in the season-opener at Daytona and backed up that result with another second at Illinois State Fairgrounds in Springfield earlier this month. The 19-year-old from Temecula, Calif., secured the 2020 ARCA Menards Series Bounty Rookie-of-the-Year title following yesterday’s season finale.
“We are very happy with Hailie’s progress as demonstrated in her first year as a part of our Ford Performance driver development program” said Mark Rushbrook, global director, Ford Performance Motorsports.
“Continuing with the consistency from DGR-Crosley, Hailie is ready to make the step to the NASCAR Truck Series providing some intense competition and great racing.”
Deegan was the first female to win scored in the K&N Pro Series West tour. In 28 starts, she scored three victories, five poles, 13 top fives and 23 top 10s prior to graduating to ARCA. After moving to DGR-Crosley and running a full ARCA schedule, Deegan improved her average finish by 2.4 positions.
“I’ve enjoyed watching Hailie progress in the ARCA Menards Series this season and prepare for the next step in her racing career, moving up to the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series in 2021,” said David Gilliland, co-owner, DGR-Crosley. “I’m happy DGR-Crosley can be part of her learning process as she transitions to the next level of competition and we’re all excited to start prepping for next season with her.”