Reed Sorenson, whose NASCAR career has bounced between the Sprint Cup and Nationwide series, has been named to drive for Red Bull Racing’s Sprint Cup No. 83 team in the June 27 race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
The team announced Wednesday that Sorenson, 24, will fill in for No. 83 driver Brian Vickers, who is skipping the rest of the season while he recovers from blood clots, at New Hampshire.
In taking the substitute spot, Sorenson replaces Casey Mears, who has been driving the 83 since Vickers dropped off the tour. Mears apparently will not be returning to the car.
“Our unique situation has afforded us the opportunity to try some different things, and we’re continuing to do that with Reed,” said Jay Frye, the team’s general manager. “We appreciate Casey’s work and everything he’s done the past five weeks.”
Mears was involved in a controversial crash with teammate Scott Speed in Sunday’s race at Michigan International Speedway. They were racing side by side near the back of the field when Mears lost control and hit Speed.
Mears is scheduled to return to his former ride at Tommy Baldwin Racing beginning with the New Hampshire race.
Road course driver Mattias Ekstrom is scheduled to drive the 83 this week at Infineon Raceway in a one-off ride.
Red Bull officials did not indicate if Sorenson would continue in the 83 past the New Hampshire event.
Sorenson, 24, made his debut in the Sprint Cup series in 2005. He has run three Cup races this season and has made 10 Nationwide Series runs. He is 13th in Nationwide points.
Mike Hembree is NASCAR Editor for SPEEDtv.com and has been covering motorsports for 28 years. He has written several books on NASCAR, including "NASCAR: The Definitive History of America's Sport" and "Then Tony Said To Junior: The Best NASCAR Stories Ever Told". He is a six-time winner of the National Motorsports Press Association Writer of the Year Award.