Kenseth leaving Gibbs at end of 2017 season

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Re: Kenseth leaving Gibbs at end of 2017 season

Postby buckyfastdraw » Wed Jul 12, 2017 8:08 pm

Matt, like most of the older drivers, thinks that the business side of racing should be handled by the businessmen and the racing side should be handled by the drivers and crew chiefs. This does not work in an environment where the TV money is king and getting the hood of your car on TV is much more important than being a great racer. There has never been any respect, shown by TV producers, for the skill, aptitude, and endurance of race car drivers. They only respect guys who can fill the short spaces of "air-time" between the beer and prescription drug commercials with a TV glib fest. Matt is old school and has no personality for a TV glib fest. This is happening to every TV dominated sport. Did anyone else puke when they saw Alex Rodriguez, in his Madison Avenue garb, going around interviewing the National League infielders on the field as they were warming up to play the second inning, or the interview with a miked up Bryce Harper as he was playing in right field in the middle of the All Star game? What a joke. While I am on this subject, what about current TV programming? Is there anything that any of the networks actually do to produce what passes for their programming? TV is like Bruce Willis in the "Sixth Sense", he is already dead but he just doesn't know it yet. NASCAR will die with TV if they don't get back to producing a day long spectacle for the real race fans to enjoy, in person and with their families. That includes 500 mile marathon races staged in every corner of the country and Matt Kenseth type drivers to do the racing. Oh say! Lets get the popcorn ready for the toy drone races on the tube tonight! Sheesh. I am going fishing now and I will see more entertainment from the world that God gave us to live in than I will on this Sunday's TV NASCAR spectacle. When Matt is done, I am done. :chat:
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Re: Kenseth leaving Gibbs at end of 2017 season

Postby valhalla » Wed Jul 12, 2017 9:04 pm

Thanks bucky
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Re: Kenseth leaving Gibbs at end of 2017 season

Postby Wendell » Sun Jul 16, 2017 4:16 pm

Interview with Gibbs this morning on how it played out on the NASCAR app.

I'm certainly not happy with this but it probably couldn't have played out much differently than it did.

Will just hope for a big finish and a good ride for next year.
New team, new year, new attitude. I feel a Championship coming on!!!
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Re: Kenseth leaving Gibbs at end of 2017 season

Postby Kenseth & Packers » Sun Jul 16, 2017 7:13 pm

Wendell wrote:Interview with Gibbs this morning on how it played out on the NASCAR app.

I'm certainly not happy with this but it probably couldn't have played out much differently than it did.

Will just hope for a big finish and a good ride for next year.
I don't either .. not sure what Carl Edwards retirement had to do with Matt's situation .. I don't think it did. If Edwards would have stayed on Matt still would have got bumped for Erik Jones. You never can believe what any of these guys say in interviews ... Joe Gibbs blew smoke up our butts the past year or so with his .. we love Matt schtick, but he knew all along Matt was a goner. Oh well .. it was a good 4.5 year run, and lets hope Matt can finish it off in grand style.
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Re: Kenseth leaving Gibbs at end of 2017 season

Postby steveegg » Mon Jul 17, 2017 1:33 pm

Worse, the 77 is looking less likely. The only thing Barney Visser is committing to is the 78 and Truex.

I can't blame him - for years, he ran the 78 out of his own pocket and only in the last couple did he get Bass Pro Shops on a partial-sponsorhip schedule. It sounds like 5-Hour Energy was one-and-done there all along.

I suppose the "good" news is, if one of us had $20 million floating around (more likely $40-$60 million because Matt has more than 1 year racing left in him), there's going to be an extra charter for sale because it appears there's going to be only 35 full-time Cup teams next year.
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Re: Kenseth leaving Gibbs at end of 2017 season

Postby mustanger » Mon Jul 17, 2017 4:29 pm

Jason Ratcliff also leaving as Crew Chief of the #20...

http://www.espn.com/jayski/cup/2017/sto ... -role-2018

Crew chief Jason Ratcliff will be following driver Matt Kenseth on the way out of the #20 Joe Gibbs Racing's Toyota in 2018.

Ratcliff confirmed to NBC Sports after Kenseth's fourth place finish Sunday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway that he won't be returning atop the pit box next season when Erik Jones replaces Kenseth.

Ratcliff said he isn't sure if he will stay at Joe Gibbs Racing ("We'll see," he said with a smile), but he expects all of the car's team members are secure at the organization.

Ratcliff has been paired with Kenseth since he joined Joe Gibbs Racing in 2013, scoring 13 victories together. He also won with Joey Logano in 2012.
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Re: Kenseth leaving Gibbs at end of 2017 season

Postby mustanger » Mon Jul 17, 2017 4:42 pm

Kenseth & Packers wrote:
Wendell wrote:Interview with Gibbs this morning on how it played out on the NASCAR app.

I'm certainly not happy with this but it probably couldn't have played out much differently than it did.

Will just hope for a big finish and a good ride for next year.
I don't either .. not sure what Carl Edwards retirement had to do with Matt's situation .. I don't think it did. If Edwards would have stayed on Matt still would have got bumped for Erik Jones. You never can believe what any of these guys say in interviews ... Joe Gibbs blew smoke up our butts the past year or so with his .. we love Matt schtick, but he knew all along Matt was a goner. Oh well .. it was a good 4.5 year run, and lets hope Matt can finish it off in grand style.


Yeah, I think it is pretty clear that everyone knew once Jones got signed to a ONE YEAR DEAL at FRR, that it was just filler until the 20 opened up. Especially once Hamlin signed a new contract, that was pretty much it. Even if Edwards had hung around, Matt (based on his age) had the shortest shelf life of the remaining drivers, so...

I still believe the number one thing that will hurt his chances to get another ride is sponsorship. Let's face it, NASCAR is struggling right now, and it is on a lot of different fronts. Declining attendance, ratings that continue to decline month after month and year after year, and the always looming TV contracts that may be far less lucrative (and by extension less visible to an already dwindling audience) make paying out big sponsorship dollars out of whack with return on investment. Add in an older driver who isn't a goofball (AKA: Sponsor's Dream, ala Michael Waltrip) and has had sponsorship struggles in the past, it will be a tough road ahead. Anymore, it seems like the vast majority of the drivers come up with a big money backing their entry into the series, and as soon as it goes away, they disappear with it.

At the end of the day, this is not really a Matt problem, it is a NASCAR problem, and they only have themselves to blame with bad decisions and mismanagement of their product. Matt may just be another victim of their folly.
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Re: Kenseth leaving Gibbs at end of 2017 season

Postby Idaho Fan » Tue Jul 18, 2017 10:03 am

http://nascar.nbcsports.com/2017/07/18/matt-kenseth-on-driving-no-88-car-i-dont-feel-like-thats-going-to-be-an-opportunity/

The article (and presumably the interview) didn't address anything about the #5 though.
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Re: Kenseth leaving Gibbs at end of 2017 season

Postby Kenseth & Packers » Tue Jul 18, 2017 11:42 am

Idaho Fan wrote:http://nascar.nbcsports.com/2017/07/18/matt-kenseth-on-driving-no-88-car-i-dont-feel-like-thats-going-to-be-an-opportunity/

The article (and presumably the interview) didn't address anything about the #5 though.


Yep, saw that this morning.

This article link below seems to think that Matt has something in the works with Hendrick, but that the #88 may not be in play. They mention the #5 and #25 as possibilities. The #88 could be retired for a year or two until one of the young drivers is deemed ready to take it over. There is another link inside the article below from Dave Moody .. he mentions that both Dale Jr. and Jimmie Johnson are lobbying hard for Kenseth to join Hendrick. Jimmie was hyping up Bowman for the #88 the other day, so perhaps the #5 is the target for Matt. Also .. Junior Motorspots could decide to run Cup car next and Matt could be the perfect driver for it. Hopefully something good works out for Matt.

http://nesn.com/2017/07/nascar-rumors-m ... xt-season/
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Re: Kenseth leaving Gibbs at end of 2017 season

Postby mustanger » Tue Jul 18, 2017 4:31 pm

JR Motorsports is not a possibility, as Hendrick has part ownership and would have to relinquish that in order for them to move to Cup under the current rules.

The cars that would be in play IMO...

1 - Mcmurray is in a contract year, and Ganassi is running well enough right now for Matt to consider it.

2 - ONLY if Keselowski were to leave, but I both highly doubt that would happen, and Penske might make a move to put Blaney in the 2 and can the idea of a 3rd team. Also factors of Kenseth's history with the current crop of Penske drivers. This is the longest of long shots IMO.

5 - This is a viable possibility, but probably hinges more on sponsorship and other factors. On top of that, this has not been a team that is performing well, and you have to think that Matt would be considering that in what is probably his final contract that he will sign.

10 - All the rumors point to Danica exiting the sport, and Haas has said that it is actually cheaper for him to run 4 cars with one unsponsored than 3 with sponsors. Matt has a good relationship with Stewart (generally), Kurt Busch, Clint Bowyer, and even with Harvick these days. SHR cars have shown speed, and he would be warming the seat for Cole Custer when he eventually moves up. The main issue with SHR is sponsorship across the board, with only Harvick being consistently covered. I'd have to wonder if adding Kenseth to that mix would work on on that front.

21 - Wood Brothers - Sort of a long shot, and it has been more lately a spot for younger drivers (Bayne, Blaney) to move up. Also would likely be very dependent on whether or not Penske would keep their partnership with WBR once Blaney moves out, or if they would be back to a single car operation that likely would struggle in comparison to the current Penske supported operation that they currently have.

41 - Some minor rumors about Kurt Busch retiring, and the fact that there have been no announcements about extension or sponsorship. I put this pretty low on the scale because KB will likely re-up, but it's out there for now...

43 - I imagine that if Matt came calling, then Petty would be thrilled to have him, but I also doubt Matt would really want to drive what has been a backmarker car for the most part.

77 - Furniture Row racing. Based on the way things have gone with Gibbs... I just don't see this happening. It's too close to home, and in a way I think that Matt wouldn't really be salty about this kind of move - where as from what he has said, it sounds like he isn't really happy with the way he is being forced out at Gibbs.

88 - Pretty highly unlikely based on recent comments, although I still think the door was left cracked enough that there was a sliver of light in it. Low on the likely scale, though.


I do find it a little strange that Matt keeps saying "it's only July" when everything I have heard in the past is that sponsorships and things need to be in place by the prior summer in general to be secure for the following year. I'm not so confident that it isn't time to get the ball rolling sooner rather than later. Then again, he may already know exactly what he is doing and he is just holding his cards close to his chest.
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Re: Kenseth leaving Gibbs at end of 2017 season

Postby Kenseth & Packers » Tue Jul 18, 2017 7:56 pm

Good writeup ... hopefully he can land in a good spot. He's still got some races to run and hopefully it will be with a quality organization that give him a chance to win races. I'm hoping it all happens soon, but as of right now there is only one confirmed job opening .. the #88.
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Re: Kenseth leaving Gibbs at end of 2017 season

Postby steveegg » Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:43 pm

Given this story, about the only way Matt could be at Richard Petty Motorsports is if they go back to 2 teams and don't re-sign Aric Almirola. Richard Petty wants Darrell Wallace Jr. full-time next year if he has room, and Smithfield hasn't re-upped their sponsorship of the 43 yet.

There's also an interesting tidbit about multiple charters held by a team. RPM could lease out the #43 charter and move the #44 charter (leased out to the #32) over to the 43. That would put off the decision of being a 1-car or 2-car team for 1 more year.
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Re: Kenseth leaving Gibbs at end of 2017 season

Postby Kenseth & Packers » Thu Jul 20, 2017 12:14 pm

Matt won't be in the #88 .. that gig has officially gone to Alex Bowman as of this morning. I still think Matt could wind up in the #5, but it's a better bet that William Byron gets that ride if it opens up. So, what's left? Matt to the #10 could be a possibility. Matt to the #77 could still be a possibility. Who knows? Hoping for the best, but expecting the worst.
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Re: Kenseth leaving Gibbs at end of 2017 season

Postby Kenseth & Packers » Thu Jul 20, 2017 12:16 pm

steveegg wrote:Given this story, about the only way Matt could be at Richard Petty Motorsports is if they go back to 2 teams and don't re-sign Aric Almirola. Richard Petty wants Darrell Wallace Jr. full-time next year if he has room, and Smithfield hasn't re-upped their sponsorship of the 43 yet.

There's also an interesting tidbit about multiple charters held by a team. RPM could lease out the #43 charter and move the #44 charter (leased out to the #32) over to the 43. That would put off the decision of being a 1-car or 2-car team for 1 more year.


I would hope Matt could do better than RPM .. seems like a middle tier team at best. I bet Matt could put one of their cars in victory lane, but we'd probably have to suffer thru a lot of very mediocre performances.
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Re: Kenseth leaving Gibbs at end of 2017 season

Postby steveegg » Thu Jul 20, 2017 3:34 pm

I'm expecting Homestead to be Matt's last race at this point. Everything is closing up. I just don't see the sponsorship out there to make a driver change at the 10/41, keep the 77 open, or reopen the 44.

Even if William Byron isn't deemed ready for Cup, there's 3 Cup veterans under the Hendrick/JR Motorsports banner ready to be a cheaper seat-warmer at the 5, a situation that wasn't there the last time Hendrick tossed a driver out of the 5 a year early (Casey Mears out in favor of Mark Martin going into 2009).
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Re: Kenseth leaving Gibbs at end of 2017 season

Postby Kenseth & Packers » Thu Jul 20, 2017 11:38 pm

***I stumbled across some news from last month apparently Chip Ganassi said there will be no changes to their lineup for 2018 ... disregard what I said below.


As mentioned above the #1 would be an interesting option. Matt is a big upgrade over Jamie Mac, and age isn't really a concern there. I also think the sponsorship for that car might be in fairly good shape. Nobody is mentioning the #1 being a potential landing spot, but given the way that team is running this last year and half it really could be a good gig.
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Re: Kenseth leaving Gibbs at end of 2017 season

Postby steveegg » Sun Jul 23, 2017 1:20 pm

Another strike against Matt going to RPM - according to "Let's Talk NASCAR" (a Wisconsin-based show), Smithfield is more tied to Almirola than to RPM. Rumors had Smithfield/Almirola going to the 10, but those have quieted down, with Smithfield/Almirola more likely to stay at the 43 now.
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Re: Kenseth leaving Gibbs at end of 2017 season

Postby steveegg » Sun Jul 23, 2017 2:11 pm

Sounds like the 5 may still be a possibility. From this morning's presser with, among others, Rick Hendrick (via Jayski):
Q: RICK, WHEN ALEX SIGNED THIS CONTRACT LAST OCTOBER, WAS THE DECISION EFFECTIVELY MADE THEN, THAT IF DALE DIDN’T DRIVE IN 2018, HE WAS GOING TO BE THE DRIVER? THERE’S SOME OTHER OPTIONS THAT HAVE COME UP RECENTLY, SUCH AS MATT KENSETH, OR OTHER VETERANS THAT MIGHT BE OUT THERE. WERE YOU COMMITTED TO ALEX FROM THAT POINT, AND DIDN’T CONSIDER A PERSON LIKE KENSETH WHO MIGHT BE ON THE MARKET.

RICK HENDRICK: We didn’t know what was going to happen. We were very, very careful not to guarantee anything other than if opportunities arose, then he would have a shot. I can’t make all the decisions. The sponsors have to be involved. In my mind, Alex was going to get the next up.

Q: DID YOU LOOK AT MATT AT ALL?

RICK HENDRICK: I love Matt Kenseth. I love him. He’s a tremendous talent. In the past, he and I have talked about how sometimes things just don’t line up at the right time....

Q: WHAT’S THE PLAN FOR WILLIAM BYRON? IS THERE A SCENARIO WHERE HE COULD BE IN ONE OF YOUR CARS FULL-TIME NEXT SEASON?

RICK HENDRICK: He’s definitely going to be in the XFINITY car. We’re not ready to cross that bridge yet.
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Re: Kenseth leaving Gibbs at end of 2017 season

Postby steveegg » Mon Jul 24, 2017 8:43 am

Scratch the 5 as a possibility. Kahne's win makes it highly unlikely he'll be booted early.

However, if we're willing to accept a field-filler ride like the Labontes did, Front Row Motorsports was, at least at the start of the season, planning on going back to 3 teams in 2018. They bought a charter from the 83 team and leased it to the 72. Of course, given FRM has an alliance with Roush Fenway and Roush is staying at 2 teams, there's a strong possibility that Chris Buescher ends up in the 3rd FRM car, especially if JTG Daughtery keeps running Chevys.
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Re: Kenseth leaving Gibbs at end of 2017 season

Postby Kenseth & Packers » Mon Jul 24, 2017 1:50 pm

steveegg wrote:Scratch the 5 as a possibility. Kahne's win makes it highly unlikely he'll be booted early.

However, if we're willing to accept a field-filler ride like the Labontes did, Front Row Motorsports was, at least at the start of the season, planning on going back to 3 teams in 2018. They bought a charter from the 83 team and leased it to the 72. Of course, given FRM has an alliance with Roush Fenway and Roush is staying at 2 teams, there's a strong possibility that Chris Buescher ends up in the 3rd FRM car, especially if JTG Daughtery keeps running Chevys.


I think Matt might be finished ... he doesn't want to drive for a run of the mill outfit. I still think the the 77 could be a possibility, but I doubt they want to pay Matt what he's worth. The 10 and 41 still could be options as well, but I haven't heard anything about either of late. I think with the economics of NASCAR changing quickly we probably are about to witness the finality of Matt's career. That's a sad deal, but he really has nothing to prove to anyone. He's a hall of a famer .. great career. Hopefully one of the top teams realizes they need a guy like Kenseth, but I'm not holding my breath.
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