Drivers who could be out: No. 4 – Corey LaJoie
Spire Motorsports is by no means a dream landing spot for a NASCAR Cup Series driver, but you have to wonder just how much longer they want to wait before they replace Corey LaJoie behind the wheel of the #7 Chevrolet.
LaJoie, who has never spent more than two seasons with the same team, said before the 2021 season that he felt that he and the #7 team had a chance to get into the playoffs on points.
Yet he ended up a dozen and a half spots lower in the standings than the final driver who locked in on points, and the 2022 season has been even worse for him.
The only full-time driver he ranks ahead of in the point standings is Rick Ware Racing’s Cody Ware, and he has yet to finish higher than 15th place in a non-superspeedway race since joining the team last year.
He sits in 31st place in the point standings — even behind RFK Racing’s Brad Keselowski, who was issued a 100-point penalty earlier this year.
Without Keselowski’s penalty, LaJoie would be 59 points out of the top 30. Even if he pulls off an upset victory before the regular season ends, the fact that he isn’t in the top 30 would keep him out of the playoffs.
The 30-year-old Charlotte, North Carolina native is perhaps best known for his podcast Stacking Pennies. Unfortunately, he has been doing just that in 2022. In seven of his 18 starts so far this year, he has scored just one, two or three points, including four of his last five and five of his last seven.
He does have a career-high fifth place finish at Atlanta Motor Speedway to his name this year. But if not for that single result, he could find himself in a heated battle with the other Spire Motorsports entry and the two Rick Ware Racing entries to crucially keep the #7 team inside the top 33 in the owner standings.