NASCAR: Crazy stat sums up Tyler Reddick’s rough start

Tyler Reddick, 23XI Racing, NASCAR (Photo by Meg Oliphant/Getty Images)
Tyler Reddick, 23XI Racing, NASCAR (Photo by Meg Oliphant/Getty Images) /

Tyler Reddick has had an absolutely disastrous start to his first NASCAR Cup Series season with 23XI Racing since replacing Kurt Busch.

Tyler Reddick’s switch from Richard Childress Racing and Chevrolet to 23XI Racing and Toyota wasn’t initially supposed to happen until the 2024 NASCAR Cup Series season.

But a combination of post-announcement friction at his former team and Kurt Busch’s (full-time) career-ending head injury led to Reddick making the move a year early.

Suffice it to say that so far, the move has left a lot to be desired, and given the immediate success of his Richard Childress Racing replacement, former Joe Gibbs Racing and Toyota driver Kyle Busch, many have started to wonder if it was really the right move.

No stat does a better job of summing up the struggles Reddick has endured than the fact that right now, he is the third 23XI Racing driver in the standings.

For reference, 23XI Racing run two full-time cars in the NASCAR Cup Series, one for Tyler Reddick and one for Bubba Wallace.

Reddick is currently tied in points with Travis Pastrana, who made his Cup Series debut with the team in the season-opening Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway. Pastrana wasn’t guaranteed a spot in the field since his entry was a non-chartered entry, but he locked in on speed and started last.

It’s not like Pastrana racked up a ton of points either. He didn’t score any points in his Bluegreen Vacations Duel race and didn’t score any stage points. He did place a solid 11th in his Cup Series debut, netting him 26 points.

Reddick has scored 26 points through three races, and the tiebreaker goes to Pastrana due to having the better top finish of the two.

Reddick crashed out of the Daytona 500 and was taken out at Auto Club Speedway in the bizarre multi-car wreck on the restart. He had an eventful race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, which saw him in the wall more than once, and finished in a season-best 15th place.

All of his points have come from his lackluster race results. He has yet to score points in any stages.

Assuming he starts this coming Sunday’s race at Phoenix Raceway, he will be guaranteed to score at least one point and will therefore finally pass Pastrana in the standings — three weeks after Pastrana’s one and only Cup Series start.

The only other full-time driver still behind Pastrana in the standings is Spire Motorsports’ Ty Dillon. Aside from Reddick and Dillon, the only driver behind Pastrana who has competed in all three races to start the year is Live Fast Motorsports’ B.J. McLeod.

Much of his struggles, specifically the wreck at Auto Club Speedway, have been out of Reddick’s control. To make matters worse, qualifying was canceled for the race at Auto Club Speedway, and a mechanical issue at Las Vegas Motor Speedway prevented him from qualifying.

But “control” isn’t factored into the standings or the playoff picture. Points are points, and if points aren’t scored, points aren’t scored. Right now, Reddick ranks 34th in the series.

One thing to make note of is the fact that it is still early, far too early to write Reddick off. Three races into the season means there are 23 to go before the playoffs, and two of the tracks remaining on the regular season schedule are tracks where Reddick earned his first victories a year ago.

23XI Racing have also established themselves as a team capable of earning solid results, as Wallace did on Sunday at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, finishing in fourth place as the highest non-Hendrick Motorsports driver.

Next. All-time NASCAR Cup Series wins list. dark

Eventually, you have to think that the three-time race winner from a year ago is going to figure it out. But when?