Frustrated Richard Childress Doesn’t Attempt to Hide Disappointment Moments After Tyler Reddick Wins at Indianapolis and Pair Talked for First Time Since Departure Announcement
Richard Childress didn’t hide the frustration of his team earlier this month and hours after Tyler Reddick announced that he was joining 23XI Racing in 2024. Just this past week, the NASCAR Hall of Famer offered details of what happened with his young driver during the announcement and didn’t mince words that he was not happy with how it was all handled.
On Sunday, the 26-year-old driver capped off July with his second career Cup win in the month. After the race, the veteran owner celebrated with his team but again made a point and let it be known that he was still not pleased with his driver’s move several weeks earlier.
Last week Richard Childress called Tyler Reddick’s handling of announcement ‘very unprofessional’
Tyler Reddick’s announcement several weeks ago that he was departing Richard Childress Racing for 23XI Racing in 2024 shocked the NASCAR world. And it unsurprisingly angered the team owner, who signed the driver to an Xfinity Series ride in 2019 and promoted him to the Cup Series a year later. He wasn’t necessarily upset because Reddick was leaving, but how it all went down.
The 76-year-old admitted as much last week in an interview with Fox’s Bob Pockrass.
“The biggest surprise was when he came to us less than one hour before the announcement. I don’t think it showed any respect for his race team or everyone who got him where he is,” Childress said. “Less than one hour before the announcement? A lot of stuff swirls around an 18-month announcement.
“The biggest thing is you should come to me respectfully and say, ‘Hey, I’ve signed, I want to do something, how do you think we should make a joint announcement?’ None of that happened. I’m not upset he’s going wherever he’s going. But the way it was handled was very unprofessional.”
Childress calls out Reddick’s handling of announcement in postrace interview
On Sunday, Reddick was understandably jubilant after winning his second career Cup race in July. He hugged his pit crew and received congratulations from Childress in what was later reported as the first conversation between the pair since the departure announcement.
NBC’s Parker Kligerman interviewed Childress, talked about the win, and asked about his relationship with Reddick.
“I worked with Kevin Harvick through his whole deal, and we made a joint announcement,” Childress said. “He won four races that year and we almost won the championship. This one didn’t happen like that.”
“What will you say to him in Victory Lane?” Kligerman asked.
“I congratulated him out there,” he curtly replied. “I congratulated the whole team. The whole team did a great job.”
Will Reddick be back with RCR in 2023?
The Indy win was an icebreaker, opening a door and providing an opportunity for the pair to talk about something good. Despite that unifying moment, it’s evident Childress is still very much irritated.
The owner later confirmed in the press conference that Reddick will be back with the team in 2023. Whether or not that happens remains to be seen.
If it does somehow work out, it’s hard to imagine it being a smooth relationship when the pair hadn’t talked in weeks and the owner, just moments after his driver wins, doesn’t even attempt to hide his frustration and calls out his driver’s behavior on national television.
The Indy Road Course produced some hurt feelings and drama on Sunday. Who knew it was going to carry over into Victory Lane?