Regan Smith will not be returning to Furnitre Row Racing for the 2013 season according to the driver. The team, which had hoped to land assistance from Dodge for a two car team, is believed to be courting Kurt Busch for the seat of the No. 78 car. During his time with Furniture Row, Smith helped build up an organization which culminated with a win at Darlington last year.
Busch, the 2004 Sprint Cup Series champion, is currently driving for Phoenix Racing in the No. 1 car on a one year deal. Reports suggest that Phoenix Racing may close its doors after this season.
With 24 career wins, Busch is by far the most successful driver on the market.
It has been no secret that Furniture Row Racing has shown interest in Busch. General manager Joe Garone has said multiple times that the team was interested in the driver but also had mentioned their intent was to keep Smith as well.
Last season Richard Petty Motorsports was rumored to have made an effort to sign Busch. In addition to driving for Phoneix Racing, Busch has driven the No. 54 car in the Nationwide Series for his brothers team, Kyle Busch Motorsports. Saturday’s race at Kentucky Speedway is the last known date that he will drive the car.
Busch is currently 26th in the driver standings with a best finish of third at Sonoma.
Smith finished 28th in the standings in 2010 and 26th in 2011. He is currently 23rd this season.
Furniture Row, which has a technical alliance with Richard Childress Racing, replaced crew chief Pete Rondeau with Todd Berrier in late July.