Now that the 2023 NASCAR season is over, it is time for my favorite part of the off-season: predicting the next season. This past season came with many unexpected events, such as Ricky Stenhouse winning the Daytona 500, Chris Beuscher having a breakout season, Chase Elliott winning nothing, and Ryan Blaney winning the championship. That is what makes NASCAR such a great sport. You never know what is going to happen.
My first prediction of the 2024 NASCAR season is that Ricky, Stenhouse, and the JTG Daugherty Racing team will take another step forward. This past season was the team's best finish since 2014 when A.J. Allmendinger finished 13th in the #47 car. After winning the Daytona 500 and finishing 16th this season, this team will have significantly more backing to elevate them to the next level. Getting past the round of 16 is an achievable goal for Stenhouse and the #47 team.
My second prediction for the 2024 season is Bubba Wallace will show the most improvement. Wallace showed glimpses of greatness this past season but struggled to close out races, which resulted in him ending the season with no wins. Despite his inability to close out a race with the win, he still managed to make the playoffs and get past the Round of 16 off of points alone. In two of the last three seasons, Wallace has won a race. In 2024, we will see Bubba Wallace win a race, if not more, and this upcoming season may be Wallace’s best.
My third prediction for this upcoming season is Carson Hocevar will become a household name. If you watch the Craftsman’s Turck Series, you already know who Carson Hocevar is. I expect him to make a lot of noise in the Cup Series, and I genuinely believe that he has the potential to be one of the greatest NASCAR drivers of our time.
Carson Hocevar leads me to my fourth prediction. Spire Motorsports will take the most significant leap forward as a team. Last season, they had two drivers finish 26th and 33rd. By keeping Corey LaJoie and signing Hocevar and Zane Smith, this will be a very exciting team to watch. My 4B prediction is that Hocevar or Smith will win the Rookie of the Year. Watch out for the #7, #71, and #77 cars.
I could go on all day about my predictions for the 2024 season, but this article would be so long that you would eventually stop reading it. My fifth and final prediction that I will give this week is unless Alex Bowman wins a race and makes it past the round of 16, Hendrick Motorsports will look elsewhere for a driver to put in the #48 car. It is not often that a Hendrick car does not win a race all season long. In the last two full seasons, he has only won one race, and he has missed several. There is a lot of talent in the field, and unless Bowman can turn things around, why would Hendrick not look elsewhere?
In the comments below, let me know what your predictions for next season are!