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Danica Patrick won’t remain with Stewart Haas Racing in 2018

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NASCAR

On Tuesday afternoon it was announced Danica Patrick will not continue to drive for Stewart Haas Racing in 2018.  The announcement came only hours after news broke of a new primary sponsor for the team in 2018.  Though Patrick won’t be in a SHR Ford next season, she is still optimistic about her future.

“It has been my honor to drive for Tony Stewart, Gene Haas and everyone at Stewart-Haas Racing for the past six seasons,” Patrick stated on Facebook Tuesday afternoon. ” Together we earned a Daytona 500 pole, seven top-10 finishes and we also had some exciting racing along the way. My time driving for them, however, has come to an end due to a new sponsorship arrangement in 2018. Sponsorship plays a vital role in our sport, and I have been very fortunate over the course of my career, but this year threw us for a curve. Our amazing partners, such as Aspen Dental and Code 3, stepped up in a big way on short notice this year and I am incredibly grateful.”

“I wish SHR the best of luck with their new sponsorship and driver. Thanks for the memories. Right now, my focus is on the remainder of the 2017 season and finishing the year strong. I have the utmost faith in myself and those around me, and feel confident about my future.”

With Danica Patrick out, who’s in?

With the departure of Danica Patrick a top tier car is opened.  Driver’s who are still searching for a 2018 ride include, Kasey Kahne, Matt Kenseth, Bubba Wallace, Jr. and now Aric Almirola.  With Smithfield Food’s moving to Stewart Haas Racing, Aric Almirola looks to be the best nominee.  After the announcement of Smithfield’s departure from Richard Petty Motorsports, multiple sources confirmed Aric Almirola will be leaving the team as well, meaning he could possibly be following his current sponsor to a new team.

We also can’t count out Matt Kenseth, and Bubba Wallace, Jr.  Both drivers have driven Ford’s in their careers, and both have proven they have talent.  In fact, Wallace most recently drove for Richard Petty Motorsports and sponsor Smithfield Foods when Almirola was out with a back injury.  Soon we should know who will claim the seat, and add to this years silly season.

Follow the writer: twitter.com/noahking45

 

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