Friday, July 12, 2013

Ryan Newman will not return to Stewart-Haas Racing in 2014

   Although not a total surprise, Stewart-Haas Racing co-owner Tony Stewart confirmed on Friday that driver Ryan Newman will not return to the Sprint Cup Series organization in 2014.

   Newman had only signed a one-year deal that expires at the end of this season. After officially announcing Kevin Harvick's move to the organization next year, Stewart said SHR was not in position to run a fourth Cup team.

   "We're not ready to expand to a fourth team," said Stewart. "Unfortunately, this will be the last year we have Ryan."

   Danica Patrick also drives fulltime for SHR.

   "I believe in him 100 percent," Stewart said of Newman. "I truly wish we were able to facilitate four teams."

   Newman said he’s “had a good run” at SHR.

   “I look forward to the opportunity to make the Chase this season and win the championship. I do not know what my future holds,” Newman said.

   “There are organizations out there that are capable of winning races and championships and it is obvious there are seats that could potentially become available.”

Sponsor Budweiser to move with Kevin Harvick to SHR

   Press release from Budweiser:

King of Beers to be Primary Sponsor of No. 4 Chevrolet SS in 2014 

    ST. LOUIS (July 12, 2013) – For more than 30 years Budweiser has sponsored some of NASCAR’s top race car drivers. The King of Beers will continue its rich tradition in the sport by joining Kevin Harvick as he moves to Stewart-Haas Racing in 2014 to drive the No. 4 Chevrolet SS in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.

   “Over the last three years, Kevin has been an amazing ambassador for Budweiser, both on and off the track,” said Blaise D’Sylva, vice president of media, sports and entertainment marketing, Anheuser-Busch.  “We value that level of commitment, and we’re proud to join him at Stewart-Haas Racing next season.”

   Under the terms of the deal, Budweiser will serve as primary sponsor of the No. 4 Chevrolet for 20 races as well as the Budweiser Duel during Budweiser Speedweeks at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway. Budweiser will serve as a major associate sponsor for the remaining races on the Sprint Cup Series schedule.

   “I’ve developed a great relationship with so many people at Budweiser and am very happy it’s an association that will continue for many years to come,” said Harvick, who has represented Budweiser since 2011. “We’ve enjoyed a lot of success together and our expectations match right up with those of Stewart-Haas Racing.”

   With the move to Stewart-Haas Racing next year, Harvick will utilize the No. 4. The transition to the team comes as Harvick enters his 14th year in NASCAR’s top series. Thus far, he has earned 21 Sprint Cup Series wins, 96 top-five and 198 top-10 finishes.

   “We’re very proud to have such an iconic brand in Budweiser and an incredibly accomplished racer in Kevin Harvick join Stewart-Haas Racing,” said Tony Stewart, three-time Sprint Cup Series champion and co-owner of Stewart-Haas Racing with Haas Automation founder Gene Haas. “Budweiser is the leader in its industry and Kevin has proven himself year-after-year in our sport. It’s a partnership we welcome as it will make our entire organization stronger.”

   With eight races remaining before the start of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, Harvick is ranked fourth in the Sprint Cup Series standings with two wins, five top-five and 10 top-10 finishes.

   “Richard Childress has been a great partner to us and we value the efforts of everyone at Richard Childress Racing,” said D’Sylva. “As we enter the second half of the season, we’re focused on supporting the No. 29 Budweiser Racing team as they contend for the 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship.”

   “I can’t thank Richard Childress and everyone at RCR enough for everything they’ve done for my career,” Harvick added. “I was just trying to make a name for myself in the Truck Series and Richard believed in me enough to make me a part of his race team back in 1999. Without him, and without the hard work of so many people at RCR, I wouldn’t be where I am today.”

   While Budweiser adorned the hood of the No. 29 Chevrolet for the past three seasons, the iconic bowtie has been a staple in the Sprint Cup Series garage dating back to its sponsorship of Terry Labonte’s No. 44 Chevrolet at Stratograph Racing in 1983. In the years since, Budweiser has celebrated a championship and nearly 60 wins in NASCAR’s elite division with the likes of Darrell Waltrip, Geoff Bodine, Bill Elliott, Kenny Schrader, Ricky Craven, Wally Dallenbach, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Kasey Kahne and Harvick.