Furniture Row Racing Aligns with Stewart-Haas Racing for Pit Crew
January 11, 2011
Regan Smith's No. 78 over-the-wall pit crew for Furniture Row Racing will be employed and trained by Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) during the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup season.
"We are excited to partner with SHR as it relates to the pit crew," said Joe Garone, Furniture Row Racing general manager. "After reviewing SHR's program, personnel and facility we are confident that SHR will deliver a crew that meets all of our objectives."
The No. 78 pit crew will be under the supervision of SHR pit crew coach Joe Piette, who also oversees the pit crews for Tony Stewart's No. 14 team and Ryan Newman's No. 39 team. The SHR team is based in Kannapolis, N.C.
“We are very excited about our new partnership with Furniture Row Racing and having the opportunity to help contribute to the growth of their program, while also giving our pit crew the chance to compete and improve on a weekly basis,” said Bobby Hutchens, director of competition, Stewart-Haas Racing.
The first race for the new Furniture Row Racing pit crew will be the invitational Budweiser Shootout, Feb. 12 at Daytona International Speedway. Smith qualified for the non-points race on the basis of being a former NASCAR Sprint Cup rookie of the year (2008). The first Sprint Cup points race is the Daytona 500 on Feb. 20.
The Denver-based, No. 78 Furniture Row Racing team is coming off its best season since the franchise entered the Sprint Cup competition in 2005. Last year, Smith qualified in all 36 races and came on strong during the second half of the season, scoring a number of top-20 finishes, including three top 13s in the final seven races. He also qualified in the top 10 in the last three Cup races of the 2010 campaign.