NASCAR Sprint Cup: Kurt Busch to drive for Furniture Row in 2013

Kurt Busch will replace Regan Smith at Furniture Row Racing for the 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup season

NASCAR Sprint Cup: Kurt Busch to drive for Furniture Row in 2013

The 2004 champion has signed a one-year deal with the Denver-based squad, concluding a short spell with the underfunded Phoenix Racing outfit, which he joined after parting ways with Penske at the end of 2011.

Busch, who was suspended from the June race at Pocono this year after verbally abusing a journalist, said he expects to be more competitive as a result of his move.

"Furniture Row Racing has the commitment, talent and resources to compete at a high level in the Sprint Cup Series," he said.

"I have watched with admiration how this team has grown over the years and that is why I am excited about the opportunity as I eagerly look forward to a new chapter in my racing career."

Busch has won 24 times in the Sprint Cup and has qualified for the Chase on six occasions, but this year his success has been limited to the Nationwide Series. He claimed victory at Richmond for Kyle Busch Motorsports in May before winning for Phoenix Racing at Daytona two months later.

In the Sprint Cup meanwhile his best result so far is a third place at Sonoma, where he won with Penske last year. He currently lies 25th in the championship, two spots behind Furniture Row's departing Regan Smith.

Smith has been at the wheel of the team's #78 car since 2009, claiming its first victory last year at Darlington but finishing only 26th in the standings. This year he has scored two top-10 finishes.

Furniture Row's General Manager Joe Garone thanked Smith for his contribution to the team, but said he believes Busch's experience will help the squad reach a new level of performance.

"Though we have made strides as a resourceful single-car Sprint Cup team, we are not where we want to be, which led us to the difficult decision of making a driver change as we move forward," he explained.

"Kurt's exceptional driving talent has the capacity to take a team to another level. We look forward to having Kurt join our Denver-based organisation and feel his racing experience will play an important role as we plan ahead to 2013.

"As our team driver the past four years, Regan has represented Furniture Row Racing with both class and competitiveness. His win at Darlington in 2011 - the first for Furniture Row Racing - will be a memory forever etched in our organisation's history.

"He is a friend, and will always be a friend of Furniture Row Racing. We wish him all the best."

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Series NASCAR
Teams Furniture Row Racing
Author Diego Mejía
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