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Chase Elliott to drive Gordon's No. 24

(AP Photo/J Pat Carter, File)

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) Chase Elliott will replace Jeff Gordon in the No. 24 Chevrolet when the four-time NASCAR champion gives up his seat at the end of this season.

The announcement Thursday was expected because Elliott is the reigning Xfinity Series champion and one of NASCAR's most promising young talents. Hendrick Motorsports had to find a seat for him at NASCAR's top level or risk losing the 19-year-old to another organization in 2016.

Gordon, who announced his plan last week to retire from full-time driving, told The Associated Press he believes Elliott is the perfect choice to replace him.

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