Everybody’s Talking (But The Parties Involved). If you believe the heavily-stoked rumor mill, Kevin Harvick is leaving Richard Childress Racing at the end of 2013 to race for his buddy Tony Stewart. Thing is, the parties involved are playing it close to the vest, though Happy has said he is preparing for departure. It could get real interesting if 2013 starts poorly- it’s a long run for a lame duck.
Kenseth Departs Roush For Gibbs. The number 20 Home Depot ride will have a new occupant, Matt Kenseth. After 13 full seasons racing for Jack Roush, Kenseth now joins forces with Kyle Busch and Denny Hamlin. While Kenseth gets ribbed for being robotic, Joe Gibbs will welcome him as a refreshing, calming presence.
Allmendinger Suspended. The move of Kenseth to JGR meant the departure of Joey Logano, who lands in the 22 at Penske Racing, a ride that opened up after the suspension of A.J. Allmendinger after testing positive for a banned substance. Allmendinger quickly submitted with the “Road To Recovery” program and was back in car in short order. The bad news is the affair will likely dash any hopes he has for a top ride.
Penske Racing‘s switch from Dodge to Ford in the offseason has been well-documented and should provide championship driver Brad Keselowski with an entirely new set of tools for 2013.
But there’s another change which Keselowski said might have an even bigger impact on Penske next season: The addition of driver Joey Logano as Keselowski’s teammate.
“I think that Joey is an elite talent in this sport and if we can work together, we will both be better,” Keselowski said during a two-day test this week at Charlotte Motor Speedway. “I would rather finish second to him next year in every race and even the championship than to rest on my laurels, not get any better (while) the whole field does and run fifth, 10th, 15th, 17th – whatever it might be – and beat him.