Stewart-Haas Racing to close NASCAR operations end season

Stewart-Haas Racing to close NASCAR operations end season

Tony Stewart and Gene Haas have confirmed that Stewart-Haas Racing will close its NASCAR operations at the end of the season.

Stewart-Haas Racing announced that it will shut down following the 2024 NASCAR season in a joint statement from co-owners Tony Stewart and Gene Haas on Tuesday, May 28.

As a result, starting with the upcoming season, none of the four chartered Cup Series race teams, two Xfinity Series cars, or the Kannapolis North Carolina race shop will be operating under the SHR banner.

The organization runs four entries in the NASCAR Cup Series with four charters for Josh Berry (No. 4), Noah Gragson (No. 10), Chase Briscoe (No. 41) , and Ryan Preece (No. 14) while Riley Herbst and Cole Custer are the other two full-time racers in the Xfinity Series.

The team statement read: “We have made the difficult decision to close Stewart-Haas Racing at the conclusion of the 2024 season. It is a decision that did not come easily, nor was it made quickly.

“Racing is a labor-intensive, humbling sport. It requires unwavering commitment and vast resources, with a 365-day mindset to be better than everyone else. It’s part of what makes success so rewarding.

“But the commitment needed to extract maximum performance while providing sustainability is incredibly demanding, and we’ve reached a point in our respective personal and business lives where it’s time to pass the torch.

“We’re proud of all the wins and championships we’ve earned since joining together in 2009, but even more special is the culture we built and the friendships we forged as we committed to a common cause — winning races and collecting trophies.

“That is the same commitment we made to our personnel, our partners and our fans coming into this year, and that commitment will remain through the season finale at Phoenix.

“We have tremendous respect and appreciation for all of our employees, and we will work diligently to assist them during this transition to find new opportunities beyond the 2024 race season.”

The organization was launched as Haas CNC Racing and had its racing debut in 2002 as NASCAR Hall of Famer Tony Stewart later teamed up with Gene Haas in 2008 to establish Stewart-Haas Racing.

SHR made their season debut in 2009 fielding two drivers: Stewart and Ryan Newman as Hendrick Motorsports supplied technical support. Stewart claimed four race victories that season marking a great start.

Stewart won the first NASCAR Cup Series championship for Stewart-Haas Racing in 2011 after a title shootout against Carl Edwards of Roush Fenway Racing. In 2013, the team added a third entry to its lineup with Danica Patrick, and in 2014, they expanded to a fourth car as the same season saw the team win its second championship, this time with driver Kevin Harvick.

In 2017 Stewart-Haas Racing entered the Xfinity Series, which includes 22 wins, 104 top fives, and 181 top 10s, alongside an Xfinity Series championship title from 2023, won by Custer.

Stewart-Haas Racing leaves behind a strong legacy of 69 victories, which ranks 10th all-time in NASCAR, eight different driver winners, an Xfinity Series championship, and two NASCAR Cup championships.

The team has also won two Southern 500s at Darlington in 2014 and 2020, three Brickyard 400s in 2013, 2019, and 2020, and the Daytona 500, in 2017.

As for the current drivers for Stewart-Haas Racing, an uncertain future could be ahead. Briscoe currently sits at 16th in the Cup standings, but revealed in a video on X, previously known as Twitter, that he didn’t see the move coming.

“Crazy time…I never thought this day would come. … I just hope all of the guys and gals at this place finds a great opportunity because each and every single person here deserves it,” he said.

Meanwhile, Berry is running 19th in the standings in what is becoming a very impressive rookie season for him. He was under a contract with Stewart-Haas Racing for next season, a season that now, SHR will not be running.

Gragson is in his first season at SHR, and is 21st in the standings, while Preece, whose contract with SHR would have been expiring at the end of the year regardless, is in 28th.

When it comes to the Xfinity Series, Stewart-Haas Racing not only runs two drivers but also provides cars for other Ford teams.

Custer, the defending Xfinity Series champion and 3rd in the standings, has long had close ties to Gene Haas. Custer was previously sponsored by Haas Automation, and his father is an executive within Stewart-Haas Racing. Meanwhile, Herbst is seventh in the standings.

Stewart-Haas Racing lost two major sponsors in Anheuser-Busch and Smithfield and had yet to find another manufacturer for the 2025 season when their contract with Ford was set to retire at the end of this year.

SHR still has four charters that are for sale, but acquisitions have yet to be finalized.

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