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Kurt Busch confirms move to Stewart-Haas (UPDATED)

Aug 26, 2013, 2:04 PM EDT

Kurt Busch AP

Furniture Row Racing driver Kurt Busch has confirmed that he will move to Stewart-Haas Racing next year – which will create a four-car operation that features himself, team co-owner Tony Stewart, fellow newcomer Kevin Harvick, and Danica Patrick.

Jim Utter of The Charlotte Observer reports that an official announcement from SHR will be made tomorrow afternoon, and that sources say the team is seeking to claim the No. 00 for Busch.

“This is the kind of situation every driver wants to be in and I’m grateful to [SHR co-owner] Gene Haas and Haas Automation for providing me this opportunity,” Busch told Jenna Fryer of the Associated Press.

“Gene wants to win, and wants me to go out there and perform to the best of my abilities.”

Talk of Busch making a possible jump to Stewart-Haas had been almost constant since word broke out after the recent race at Michigan that the team had offered him a contract.

Now, after two years of competing with smaller operations on the Sprint Cup circuit following his release from Penske Racing at the end of 2011, it appears that Busch has earned another opportunity to race as part of a bigger squad with more resources.

He has been in the thick of the Chase battle this season with the single-car FRR team, and currently sits 12th in the championship, six points out of the Top-10 cutoff point with two “regular season” races remaining.

Last Friday at Bristol Motor Speedway, Busch indicated that while he was blocking outside distractions in order to focus on getting himself and FRR into the Chase, he was also pleased with having as much interest from other teams as he’s gotten this Silly Season.

“…To have the outside guys knocking on the door going, ‘Hey we want you to drive,’ – it’s a good confidence booster, to say the least,” said Busch, who finished 31st in Saturday’s Cup race following wheel hub issues.

FRR general manager Joe Garone said in a statement that the team made Busch an offer last week to stay with them “in 2014 and beyond,” but that they respected his ultimate decision.

“His driving skill and being a dedicated team player will always be appreciated at Furniture Row Racing,” Garone continued. “But for right now, the main focus for Kurt and the team is to qualify for the Chase and contend for the 2013 Sprint Cup Series championship.”

Busch’s move to SHR comes just days after Michael Waltrip Racing crew chief Rodney Childers announced that he too would join the team as Harvick’s next crew chief. On that note, USA Today’s Jeff Gluck is now reporting that Childers has been given an early release from MWR.

  1. mnwildfan15 - Aug 26, 2013 at 12:39 PM

    Newman is pissed now, but that’s one hell of a race team, minus DP.

  2. bmcgrath2 - Aug 26, 2013 at 2:41 PM

    “sources say the team is seeking to claim the No. 00 for Busch.”

    Wtf, Double Zero?

    Who does he think he is, Buckshot Jones?

  3. dirtydrew - Aug 26, 2013 at 3:47 PM

    Good for him. He has been kinda lost in the woods for a while. Never understood that. Quality driver.

  4. TheWizard - Aug 26, 2013 at 8:05 PM

    That’s great, but can they equal what that 78 car has done this year? They’ve been in the thick of it most weeks. If Kurt had not made a couple of stupid moves on the track earlier this year he’d be inside the top 10 still.

  5. nflfan1985 - Aug 26, 2013 at 8:09 PM

    Kurt Busch and Kevin Harvick on the same team? Interesting.

  6. noring4youstill - Aug 26, 2013 at 8:47 PM

    Fistfights all around next year! Can’t wait

  7. bmcgrath2 - Aug 26, 2013 at 8:54 PM

    This is just getting ridiculous as another great driver is hopping into top-flight Hendrick equipment.

    So it looks like Chevrolet should be pretty well set next year. Stewart-Haas (Harvick, Stewart, Kurt Busch, Go Daddy Sponsored Driver), Hendrick (Dale Jr., Johnson, Gordon, Kahne) Ganassi (Kyle Larson, McMurray), RCR (Dillon, Menard, Burton, Newman?), FRR, and whoever Turner Scott hires on.

    Hate Ford or not, but its really sad what’s happened to their Cup program. They have to do something to bolster their garage this offseason, or for 2015. I realize Front Row and Petty are getting better, but they really only have 4 cars in the 2, 16, 22, 99 that have the speed to contend for a win each week (non-restrictor plate). Only 3 wins so far this year? Never would’ve thought it would have been that low, especially after Penske moved over from Dodge.

  8. Matthew - Aug 26, 2013 at 11:54 PM

    Reblogged this on Carolina Mountain Blue and commented:
    This should be interesting…interesting indeed.

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