When Matt Kenseth chose to join Joe Gibbs Racing last year there were bound to be a few changes. One of the most important changes for Kenseth was getting a new crew chief in Jason Ratcliff, another was finding a replacement for longtime spotter Mike Calinoff.
Calinoff stayed at Roush-Fenway Racing causing Kenseth to seek out a new spotter for the 2013 season.
Finding a replacement for Calinoff was no small task. Kenseth and Ratcliff listened to hours of tape before finding the right guy to serve as the eyes above the track.
They found Chris Osborne.
Osborne previously served as the spotter of the No. 22 car at Penske Racing.
“There’s a lot of things I look for,” Kenseth told the NASCAR Wire Service. “One thing is the way they talk, how clear they sound, their accent — all that stuff, so it’s something you can understand — somebody that doesn’t get excited, somebody that’s calm, and gives you all the information.
“I was excited with what I heard (with Osborne), and that being said, when you do that research, you don’t want to find somebody where you need to change 10 things. I liked the information that he was giving the other guys, and I was like, ‘Man, just go do your deal; if we have to make any adjustment, we’ll make ’em.’ And we really haven’t had to make any adjustments. I haven’t really told him to do anything different.”
Kenseth’s first official race with Osborne as his spotter will be the 55th running of the Daytona 500. Last year Kenseth won the Daytona 500, his second win in the event.