Stewart-Haas Racing competition director Greg Zipadelli didn’t bite on any inquiries regarding the team’s 2014 plans, and whether it could expand to a fourth car for NASCAR Sprint Cup. But, he said in a teleconference Monday, there are “options.”
“I mean, right now we’re really focusing on Mark (Martin),” Zipadelli said. “Obviously there’s options out there. We’re looking at everything that’s there. There is nothing done. Right now like I said we’re focused on the 39 (Ryan Newman), trying to win another race to make it into the Chase and getting Mark fitted up in this car and heading to Bristol to do the best job we can.”
SHR has already expanded from two cars, for eponymous team owner and currently sidelined driver Tony Stewart and Newman, to a third full-time entry for Danica Patrick for the 2013 sason. Patrick, interestingly, was not mentioned once by name over the course of Monday’s teleconference.
Zipadelli said there were some growing pains that came with the expansion, but would take what they learned from adding Patrick’s team to the fold if they would add a fourth besides Stewart, Patrick and 2014 new recruit Kevin Harvick.
“Well, there’s lessons to be learned, but we’re not to that point yet,” Zipadelli said. “Right now we are a three-car. We have made lots of gains throughout the year, but I still think we have room to improve. We’re still working on that.
“Obviously if something were to come, we would look at where we feel like we fell short and try to do a better job at it.”
SHR is reported to have made a formal offer to Kurt Busch for a potential fourth car, a story revealed after the weekend at Michigan International Speedway.