There has been some speculation in the news world that Carl Edwards, driver of the No.99 Fastenal Ford Fusion for Roush Fenway Racing could possibly be driving for Shell/Pennzoil in 2013.
Sam Hornish Jr., currently is running the No.22 Penske Dodge with sponsorship from Shell/Pennzoil. Penske will be switching to Ford for the 2013 season. They will be using Roush Yates Engines… Hornish has averaged a 14.8 average finish, vying for the full time cup ride next season.
Mike Mulhern said its worth watching how it plays out over the next few weeks. He said there is one unconfirmed report that Ford executives may want to put him in the car. If you remember, these were the same people that kept Edward’s from jumping ship last season before he resigned with RFR.
No one really knows how that could/would play out since Shell/Pennzoil is a Roger Penske sponsor and not a Jack Roush sponsor.
You must remember though that Edward’s is in a 3 year contract with RFR. The only way we could see this happening is if Shell/Pennzoil moves to the No.99 at RFR as part of a ‘merger’ between Penske and RFR. This would create a four car team from two teams that operated five full time cars in 2012.
Another issue is Brad Keselowski and Edwards have had a record of on track incidents with each other.
Penske has been dragging his feet, saying he would like to announce who will be in the car by Chicagoland but has made no decisions yet. Chicagoland is the first race starting the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Chase.
Penske has also said that the ultimate call of who will be driving the car will fall on Shell/Pennzoil officials.
There is no doubt that currently, Hornish Jr. deserves to be in a full time ride at Penske Racing. He was appointed to drive the car after A.J Allmendinger violated NASCAR’s substance abuse policy in July. Penske has said if he can get the Shell/Pennzoil situation resolved he would have no issue bringing him back in some sort of three car operation. You can read our opinion based post on why we think Sam Hornish Jr. deserves a ride.
Joey Logano has also been reported as being interested in the Penske Ride. Joe Gibbs Racing is rumored to be making an announcement at Atlanta Motor Speedway next weekend; which happens to be Home Depots headquarters.