List of the Week: 5 Predictions for NASCAR’s Silly Season
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With all of the shakeup that’s taken place here within the last few weeks - between Hendrick Motorsports announcing the release of Casey Mears and the addition of Mark Martin to their stable next season, and then Tony Stewart leaving Joe Gibbs Racing to venture into the car ownership business - I believe that enough “dominoes” have fallen now for everything else to start to follow suit. And, with that, I offer you my top-five predictions for how the rest of this will all sort itself out leading into the 2009 NASCAR Sprint Cup season.
5. If they are unable to lock on long-term sponsorship, Chip Ganassi will replace Reed Sorenson with Dario Franchitti inside the no. 40 car. Sorenson will then be relegated to a lower-tier team, or possibly find himself out of a Cup ride altogether next season.
4. Penske Racing will promote their current test driver, David Stremme, back up to the Cup Series to drive the no. 12 car once Ryan Newman announces his departure from the team.
3. Casey Mears will sign with Richard Childress Racing to drive for the newly formed #33 team in 2009.
2. Joe Gibbs Racing will scrap their plans to field a fourth Cup car in 2009 and promote the young Joey Logano up to the Cup Series to fill the void left in the #20 team.
1. Ryan Newman will leave Penske Racing and sign with Stewart Haas Racing in 2009 to drive the car opposite of Tony Stewart.