Natalie Decker is set to return to the Xfinity Series after an early-season appearance. The 23-year-old NASCAR driver has agreed to a deal with Our Motorsports that will put her back behind the wheel of the No. 23 Chevrolet Camaro for four more races. She will now head to Talladega Superspeedway for Saturday’s AG-Pro 300.
Decker originally made her Xfinity Series debut during the Daytona International Speedway Road Course race. She drove the No. 23 Chevrolet with Red Street Records as her sponsor, completing three of the 56 laps. However, her day came to an end after a crash. Now Decker will return to the No. 23 while taking part in her first Xfinity Series superspeedway race. She will also compete at Nashville Superspeedway in June, Road America in July, and Martinsville Speedway in October.
On Our Way To Dega Baby!!! pic.twitter.com/OE45QLz4Bk
— Natalie Decker (@NatalieRacing) April 22, 2021
Red Street Records, a Christian record label formed in 2018, will continue to sponsor Decker for the upcoming races. Artist Cade Thompson will take over the hood of her No. 23 Chevrolet for the Ag-Pro 300, which will air Saturday at 4 p.m. ET on Fox.
“I’m so ready to be back in the 23 car,” Decker said in a press release from Our Motorsports. “I love Talladega and I’m so happy it’s on my schedule this year. I will be with a new team, Our Motorsports, so there will be some challenges because this will be our first race together. I’m so thankful for Red Street Records – it’s been so much fun working with them this year and we’re all so excited to get to Talladega.”
Decker has several Camping World Truck Series starts in her career
While Decker has only one Xfinity Series race on her resume, she has made 32 starts in the Truck Series with multiple teams. She competed in 19 of the 32 races in 2019 while driving for David Gilliland Racing and partnering with sponsor N29 Technologies. She posted a season-best finish of 13th at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
Decker returned to the Truck Series in 2020 for 13 races, partnering with Niece Motorsports and driving the No. 44 Chevrolet Silverado. Decker finished fifth at Daytona International Speedway to start the season, becoming the highest-finishing female driver in the Truck Series.
However, she later missed races at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Pocono Raceway, and Talladega Superspeedway due to medical issues. Though NASCAR credited Decker with a last-place finish at Las Vegas given that she became unavailable after her truck reached the grid. She later received medical clearance and returned for races at Kentucky Speedway, Texas Motor Speedway, and Kansas Speedway among others.
Decker will have to make up ground early in the race
There will be no qualifying or practice sessions for the AG-Pro 300 due to COVID-19. Instead, NASCAR set the starting order using a formula that takes previous races into account, as well as the overall points standings. The fastest lap (15%), the driver’s finishing position (25%), the team owner’s finishing position (25%), and the team owner’s points ranking (35%) make up the defining factors.
Decker is one of seven drivers that did not take part in the previous Xfinity Series race, along with Ty Dillon, Jason White, and Joey Gase among others. Of these drivers that did race at Martinsville, only White will start behind Decker. She will head to the green flag in the 19th row, next to Colby Howard.
The AG-Pro 300 Xfinity Series race will take place Saturday afternoon at 4 p.m. ET. Fox will broadcast the action with Adam Alexander serving as the play-by-play man. Cup Series drivers Joey Logano and Tyler Reddick will join him in the booth to provide color commentary.
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