A.J. Allmendinger is returning to the NASCAR Sprint Cup series full time next season as a driver for JTG Daughterty Racing, The Sporting News reported Thursday.
Allmendinger will take the seat in the No. 47 car being driven this season by Bobby Labonte. Allmendinger has run three Sprint Cup races in the car this year and will be behind the wheel again this weekend at Atlanta.
An official announcement from the team will come Saturday, according to TSN.
The 31-year-old Allmendinger was suspended by NASCAR in July 2012 for violating its substance abuse policy. He said he unknowingly took Adderall, thinking it was an energy pill. The Penske team subsequently dropped him.
But this year Penske rehired Allmendinger and he has run IndyCar and Nationwide races for the team, finishing seventh in the Indianapolis 500 and winning Nationwide events at Road America and Mid-Ohio. He also has started nine races in 2013 for Phoenix Racing.
"I like that (JTG) team," Allmendinger said after winning at Mid-Ohio. "That whole group is a fun group to be around.
JTG Daugherty Racing is in its fifth year of full-time racing on the Sprint Cup circuit and is 30th this season in the owner standings. Former NBA player Brad Daugherty, a NASCAR analyst for ESPN, is part owner of the team.
Allmendinger has started 185 Cup races in his career and has 30 top-10 finishes.
Labonte, 49, will miss the Atlanta race after breaking ribs in a bicycle accident on Wednesday