Every driver in the NASCAR garage knows that there are some big seats open for 2013, and every man with a a helmet and firesuit has seemingly been mentioned in conjunction for open rides with Penske Racing, Joe Gibbs Racing and Stewart-Haas Racing.
Most prognosticators expect former Roush Fenway series champ Matt Kenseth to end up at JGR, while Joey Logano tries the famed Penske loyalty in his bid to unseat incumbent Sam Hornish Jr. in the #22. But the third piece of the puzzle today said that the only person that Stewart-Haas Racing is looking to put in their #39 car is the guy that is already there.
Despite the loss of the $8 million sponsorship from the U.S. Army for next year, the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup champions are expected to have little trouble maintaining its sister program to Tony Stewart’s #14 Chevrolet – and expect to do it with current pilot Ryan Newman.
"Stewart-Haas Racing continues to negotiate with one driver and one driver only for the #39 car,” reported a team spokesman to the Sporting News. “And that driver is Ryan Newman.”
The 12-year veteran currently has a tenuous grip on a spot in the Chase for the Championship, holding one of the Wild Car spots by virtue of his win at Martinsville early in the season. Newman, who started his career in sprint cars and open-wheel racing, is looking for his third Chase berth in his four years with SHR.