Monday, November 16, 2009

NASCAR’s triple header in Homestead marks final race of 2009 and final race for many.

This coming weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway will mark the season finale for all three of NASCAR’s major series, the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, the Nationwide Series and the Sprint Cup Series, but it will also mark the final race for many in their current positions, the end of an era if you will.

1. Michael Waltrip – Homestead will mark Michael Waltrip’s last race as a full-time driver. Michael will continue to be a driver in the future, but only on a part-time basis like the Daytona 500 and few more races in 2010. I wish Michael Waltrip well in not only his last ride as a full-time driver, but in MWR.

2. Martin Truex Jr. – After several seasons at what was called DEI, that is now EGR, Truex will be leaving the #1 car and Bass Pro Shop to move to Michael Waltrip Racing to drive the #56 NAPA Toyota. This is a good move for Martin Truex Jr..

3. Pat Tryson – Homestead will mark the final time that Pat Tryson will crew chief for the #2 Kurt Busch at Penske Racing. He is moving to Michael Waltrip Racing to crew chief for Martin Truex Jr. I will be interested in see just what this paring will do in 2010.

4. Jamie McMurray – Ever since NASCAR dropped the hammer on their teams that limits each organization to four team/drivers, the speculation had been flying of just who the five car team of Roush-Fenway Racing would loss and now we know that it will be Jamie McMurray. So on Sunday, McMurray will be in his last race for RFR. No official plans have been announced yet, but he is thought to be moving to thee #1 EGR ride.

5. Richard Petty Motorsports and Yates Racing – Once again, another year, another merger. It wasn’t too long that we said good bye to Petty Enterprises when they merged or got bought out Evernham Racing, however now Richard Petty Motorsports and Yates Racing is merging into one company Richard Petty Motorsports and under the Ford banner. Yates will continue to build engines for RPM and I think for Roush Fenway Racing too.

6. Brad Keselowski – Saturday will mark Brad’s last race in the #88 JR Motorsports Chevrolet in the Nationwide Series, as he has already joined Penske Racing to drive the #12 Verizon Wireless/Penske Racing Dodge as well as a full-time ride in the Nationwide Series with teammate Justin Allgaier. Like I said:

“Personally the idea of Brad going to Penske Racing doesn’t sound too good to me, yes Penske is big, but that’s in IndyCars, not NASCAR. Brad needs a veteran driver to coach him a little bit like Mark Martin, Jeff Burton, Tony Stewart or Ryan Newman, but at Penske while they have the resources, they lack that “professor” driver. The only options I see is one, run part-time in Cup while running full-time in Nationwide, two, Stewart-Haas Racing, three, Harvick leaves RCR and Brad into the #29 Shell-Pennzoil Chevy.

In my eyes, the same that I said for Penske is the same for Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing (EGR), yes the #1 car is open, but no real help. I hope if Brad goes to Penske which is still unconfirmed, he gets the time he needs to succeed.” – Read article here.

Keep in mind that Penske Racing will be the sole three-car Dodge team as RPM is moving to Ford.

And there is move, however what about the stuff that hasn’t been confirmed yet, like will Danica Patrick be racing in NASCAR in 2010 and for who? Where will Jamie McMurray, David Stremme, Casey Mears (if no sponsorship for the #07 can be found), Reed Sorenson David Gilliland go in 2010? That is only the tip of the ice berg as there are a lot of unknowns and the off season between Homestead and February in Daytona should be interesting.