NOTE: many of the links in the past news will be old and may not work
decided it was not worth the time to go thru each one on all the Team Past News pages
Furniture Row Racing Notes from the NASCAR Sprint Media Tour: #78-Furniture Row Racing opened Day 2 of the media tour, having Furniture Row recliners on stage for the team to sit in.
Driver of the #78 Furniture Row Chevy, Kurt Busch said "We want to be a western-based team that can compete w/ the big dogs."
Busch said. “It was great to have those six weeks to get team communication up and to feel comfortable.”
Busch open to idea of more NNS races with Phoenix Racing (3 scheduled). Not set to drive any for his brother but not closing door.
Busch said heading into 2012 was bizarre, this is the moat comfortable I've ever felt (going into a season) and that he travels at least twice a month to the shop in Colorado.
#78 crew chief, Todd Berrier, says Goodyear will open the season with conservative tires.
Berrier says relationship RCRracing gives team a base line, able to work & adapt from there.
Berrier says Busch truly cares about the people he works with and says a team will work very hard for that type of person.
Furniture Row's Director of Competition Mark McArdle says parts from third-party suppliers are tight for all teams. Deck lids among them. Also of note, McArdle is also the Director of Racing Operations at RCR.(from many Twitter reports/feeds)(1-22-2013)
Kurt Busch to run three NNS race for Finch: Kurt Busch and team owner James Finch are rejoining forces for the three Nationwide Series restrictor-plate races in 2013. Busch competed for Finch in 30 Sprint Cup races in 2012. Their first win together, however, came at the Daytona Nationwide Series race in July. "He did a really good job for us on the plate races, said team owner James Finch. "We have a shot at winning all three." The team announced on Tuesday that Guy Roofing will sponsor the first NNS race on Feb. 23 at Daytona. Finch is optimistic that the relationship could blossom with additional support. Busch currently competes full-time in the Sprint Cup Series for #78-Furniture Row Racing.(FoxSports)(1-11-2013)
Furniture Row Racing to extablish own pit crew: Furniture Row Racing has taken another major step in a continuing effort to strengthen its NASCAR Sprint Cup Series team. The Denver-based organization, which showcases the #78 Chevy driven by 24-time Cup winner Kurt Busch, announced that it will develop, train and oversee its own over-the-wall pit crew starting with the 2013 season. Furniture Row Racing has been utilizing over-the-wall crews employed and trained by other NASCAR teams, most recently with crewmen from Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR). Mike "Tiny" Houston, a veteran over-the-wall crewman, has been hired as the pit crew coach for Furniture Row Racing. He will oversee and direct the specialized pit crew of six members, who will train at the 32,000-square foot Performance Instruction & Training (PIT) facility in Mooresville, N.C. Houston joins Furniture Row Racing from Hendrick Motorsports where he performed the front-tire carrier duties on Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s race car. During his seven-year stint at Hendrick Motorsports, Houston also worked as a front-tire carrier on Jeff Gordon's and Jimmie Johnson's cars.(FRR)(12-5-2012)
Kurt Busch Ready for Furniture Row Racing Debut: Former NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Kurt Busch will make his Furniture Row Racing debut in Saturday night's Bank of America 500 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. The agreement with the Denver-based Furniture Row Racing calls for Busch to drive the team's #78 Chevy in the final six Sprint Cup races of 2012 and during the 2013 campaign. "This weekend begins a new chapter in my racing career and also a new chapter for Furniture Row Racing," said Busch, who captured the NASCAR title in 2004, the first year of the Chase. "The excitement level about driving the #78 Furniture Row/Farm American Chevrolet is at a high pitch and I can't wait to get started.ccThis is a team that is committed and it's also a team with plenty of potential. The guys are ready, I'm ready and we all look forward to having a positive debut. Our goal is not only to get ready for 2013, but also be competitive in the final six races. But first things first. We will need to work out the kinks as we attempt to get more speed out of the car. I look forward to working with crew chief Todd Berrier, he is a veteran in the Cup garage who has enjoyed success."(Furniture Row Racing PR)(10-11-2012)
Kurt Busch parked by NASCAR during race UPDATE2: While most of the race was monotonously boring, there were moments of emotion, yes. And Kurt Busch provided some of those. He was leading midway when he suddenly ran out of gas. And Busch wound up bouncing into the infield wall. During the yellow Busch got out to look at his car and decided it could be repaired. So he cranked it up and started to drive it back to the garage, though without his helmet. NASCAR ordered him to stop on the track, to stop scattering debris. But without his helmet Busch didn't get the radio message. So Busch roared off while the emergency crews were still at his car, one even with his arm inside, and other with an emergency medical kit on the roof, which fell off. NASCAR angrily order Busch's car parked for the rest of the race....which is his last with team owner James Finch. Busch said, "This is the way my life works. Today is a perfect example: I am leading, I wreck, I run out of gas. I tried to get back in the race, and now NASCAR is yelling at me because I don't have my helmet on, and I'm trying to get it to the garage so the guys can work on it. Now I'm in trouble, this little storm right here. This is my life. I'm not complaining; I put myself in a lot of these situations."(MikeMulhern.net)(10-8-2012)
UPDATE: NASCAR is reviewing whether Kurt Busch will face further penalty for ignoring official requests to stop his car after a lap 98 wreck on Sunday at Talladega Superspeedway. NASCAR parked Busch for the remainder of the Sprint Cup race because he drove away from the wreck with emergency workers still in the process of providing him and the #51 Phoenix Racing Chevy assistance, and because there was emergency medical equipment on the track. NASCAR officials told ESPN.com the incident is under review. Penalties typically are announced on Tuesday. Busch is on probation through the end of the year for verbally abusing a reporter in June. He also was suspended from the Sprint Cup race at Pocono.(ESPN)(10-8-2012)
UPDATE 2 - No Penalty: Kurt Busch won't face further penalties for ignoring official requests to stop his car after a Lap 98 wreck at Talladega Superspeedway, NASCAR officials said Tuesday. NASCAR parked Busch for the remainder of Sunday's Sprint Cup race because he drove away from the wreck with emergency workers still in the process of providing him and the #51 Phoenix Racing Chevy assistance, and because there was emergency medical equipment on the track. Busch said he never heard NASCAR's repeated requests to stop because he'd taken off his helmet that contains radio communication equipment. "I got out of the car and surveyed the damage, saw that it could still roll so I jumped back in," Busch told reporters at Talladega. "That is the competitor in me, which is the desire that I have and that is what gets misconstrued all the time." Busch was leading at the time of the wreck that was caused when his car ran out of gas. The 2004 Cup champion finished 39th in his final race for Phoenix Racing before moving over to the #78 at Furniture Row Racing to get a head start on the 2013 season. "This is the way my life works," Busch said. "I am leading, I wreck, I run out of gas. I'm still that competitive guy that tried to get back in the race and now NASCAR is yelling at me because I don't have my helmet on and I'm trying to get it to the garage so the guys can work on it. Now I'm in trouble, now I have this little storm right here. This is my life. I'm not complaining. I put myself in a lot of these situations, but it's on to good things now moving forward. I got all the bad luck out of the way. This year has been a great year to test me in every way." Busch is on probation through the end of the year for verbally abusing a reporter in June. He also was suspended from the Sprint Cup race at Pocono.(ESPN)(10-9-2012)
Regan Smtih to the #51 at Charlotte: Regan Smith and Kurt Busch are trading places - at least for now. Smith, 29, will drive the #51 Phoenix Racing Chevy at Charlotte Motor Speedway while Busch takes over the seat in the #78 Furniture Row Chevrolet for the remainder of the season and on to next year. "We're looking forward to having Regan in our car," Phoenix Racing general manager Steve Barkdoll said. "Regan performed the tire test at Kansas, and that should be helpful at intermediate tracks. We believe he can help get our program back on track and help attract sponsorship going forward." For Phoenix Racing, this is a tryout of sorts to see how Smith acclimates with the team. Team owner James Finch is not committing to one driver as the company continues its sponsor search. Barkdoll added that there has been recent interest from potential sponsors and hopes to find the right match between a benefactor and driver.(Fox Sports)(10-7-2012)
Smith out of the #78 after Talladega? UPDATES - Confirmed: SPEED's Race Hub reported Wednesday evening that Regan Smith's final race of the season in the Furniture Row Racing #78 would be at Talladega. Kurt Busch is expected to drive the car the remainder of the season.(9-26-2012)
UPDATE: Kurt Busch hopes to get a head start on the 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup season by jumping in the #78 Furniture Row Chevy early. The next chapter of the Busch saga could begin as early as in two weeks at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Aligning with the team before the end of the season would offer Busch an opportunity to acclimate to the group and its systems for the final six races of the season. "He's going to be out after Talladega," said Phoenix Racing team owner James Finch, for whom Busch currently drives. "We're going to go down there and try to win that race. We were up front for most of the spring race, and Brad (Keselowski) dumped us with three or four to go. We'll be fine at Talladega." So who would fill the Phoenix Racing seat currently occupied by Busch? Since Finch has operated for most of 2012 sans sponsorship, he's looking at candidates "who have the potential" to bring financial support to the team for the final six race and possibly next year. Finch has spoken to representation for AJ Allmendinger, who has been sidelined since July 7, when he was suspended for testing positive for amphetamine the week before at Kentucky Speedway. Regan Smith, who will be displaced in the #78 Chevy by Busch, could be part of an easy swap with the #51 Phoenix team. Finch isn't limited to considering Sprint Cup candidates. He also has been approached by the camps of Nationwide Series drivers James Buescher and Justin Allgaier.(Fox Sports)(9-27-2012)
UPDATE 2: Regan Smith was interviewed on SPEED's Race Hub Thursday night and said he knew about two weeks ago that he would be out of the #78 for 2013, although he did not know what the team's plans were. Since that time he has been talking to several owners, but is just starting to decide what to do next. He said his priority is to be in good equipment next year, either Sprint Cup or Nationwide, and that the Nationwide Series might be a good option for him at this point in his career. There was no discussion of him being out of the car before the end of the season.(9-28-2012)
UPDATE 2: In a move to accelerate Furniture Row Racing's preparations for the 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup season, Kurt Busch will take over the team's driving duties beginning with the Oct. 13th Bank of America 500 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Busch, who was announced earlier in the week as Furniture Row Racing's new driver for 2013, will replace Regan Smith in the #78 Chevy. Joe Garone, Furniture Row Racing's general manager, stated that Smith's Furniture Row Racing contract, which expires at the end of the season, will be fully honored.(Furniture Row Racing)(9-28-2012)
Kurt Busch to drive the #78 in 2013 UPDATE: Furniture Row Racing announced today that Kurt Busch has been hired to drive the team's #78 Chevy during the 2013 Sprint Cup season. Busch, a former NASCAR Cup champion, will replace Regan Smith, who joined Furniture Row Racing at the beginning of the 2009 season. "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," said Furniture Row Racing's general manager Joe Garone. "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 organization and feel his racing experience will play an important role as we plan ahead to 2013."
Garone added, "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 organization's history. He is a friend, and will always be a friend of Furniture Row Racing. We wish him all the best."
"Furniture Row Racing has the commitment, talent and resources to compete at a high level in the Sprint Cup Series," said Busch. "I have watched with admiration on 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." Since the beginning of the 2012 season, Busch has driven the #51 Chevy for Phoenix Racing. His previous two teams in the Sprint Cup Series were at Penske Racing [#2 & #22] and Roush Fenway Racing [#97].(Furniture Row Racing)(9-24-2012)
UPDATE: Busch announced today on SPEED's NASCAR Race Hub that he has taken over as driver of the #78 Furniture Row entry for the 2013 season, moving on from Phoenix Racing. SPEED NASCAR Race Hub host Steve Byrnes sat down with Busch in an exclusive interview about his new ride. Here is what he had to say about 2013 read the full interview at SPEED: Kurt Busch Speaks About His Move To Furniture Row Racing.(9-25-2012)
Smith expects to be out of the #78 UPDATE: . Regan Smith, who piloted Furniture Row Racing to its breakthrough first victory on the Sprint Cup tour last season, has been told he won't be back in the organization's #78 car next year. Smith confirmed the news to NASCAR.com after qualifying Friday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. "I've been told it appears I won't be back here next year," Smith said. Furniture Row's general manager, Joe Garone, could not immediately be located for comment. Smith didn't want to speculate on the reasons behind the impending change and he said he's unsure if he will finish the season in the #78 Chevy (NASCAR.com).
AND Regan Smith does not believe he will return to Furniture Row Racing in 2013, possibly opening the door for much-maligned driver Kurt Busch. Furniture Row general manager Joe Garone has expressed interest in hiring Busch since January and the team has been seeking sponsorship to field a second car for him. Busch confirmed Friday that he has talked with Garone as well as other teams. "They've shown good interest and so have others," Busch said. "There's a handful of contracts sitting on my desk and it's just a matter of going through some detail with each of the teams." Furniture Row general manager Joe Garone said in an email Friday that his team is interested in Busch but that Busch has talked with other teams as well. Richard Petty Motorsports is among the organizations that has not signed its drivers for next season and also could be a candidate for Busch. When asked Friday if he would be back with Furniture Row next season, Smith said, "I don't believe so."
"There's a lot to it, is the best way I can put it," said Smith, who moved to Denver last year to be closer to the Colorado-based team. "It's a place where I've been for a while. I'm happy here. I like it here. But sometimes change isn't bad, either." Smith said he has been talking to other teams about 2013.(Sporting News)(9-21-2012)
UPDATE: That someone could be Kurt Busch or Brian Vickers. Both drivers are on the short list for Furniture Row – which recently re-signed its technical alliance with Richard Childress Racing. Busch met with Furniture Row principals back in early July.(FoxSports)(9-22-2012)
Smith wants to return to Furniture Row: #78-Regan Smith would like to see his deal extended with Furniture Row. Having driven for the team part-time in 2009, Smith finished 28th in the standings in 2010 and 26th in 2011 with a win at Darlington. He is 23rd in the standings this year but since crew chief Todd Berrier joined the team in July, Smith has an average finish of 17th-seven spots better than his average finish for the first 19 races. "It's been going really good so far," Smith said. "Our performance has been greatly improved since he came on board. … We want to get to where we know we're capable of being, one step further up the grid. The case has been made. We'll see how things play out. My first option is to be here. This is the place where I want to be and as long as they want me here, then that's fine and it's a happy fit." With rumors swirling that [Furniture Row] might pursue [Kurt] Busch, Smith emphasized that he wants to stay with the team. "We've grown together," Smith said. "We've gone through a lot together. I want to make sure we go through the really, really peaks of the mountain together. We'll see how it plays out. You're always talking. There's a lot of stuff going on in the garage area right now. That's no different than this time of year in any year."(Sporting News)(9-13-2012)
Patrick says Smith apologized: #10-Danica Patrick says #78-Regan Smith called to apologize for their run-in last Saturday night at Bristol, and she described that move as 'upstanding,' though it's not clear if she's really buying the apology 100%. Any regrets about not throwing her helmet at the man who took her out of a top-20 finish? That's what teammate Tony Stewart did at his Bristol antagonist, Matt Kenseth, much to the delight of the crowd of some 153,000. "I'm just glad I didn't give him the finger, because I understand that is a penalty," Patrick said with an impish grin.(MikeMulhern.net)(9-1-2012)
Azar singing National Anthem at Michigan; guest of #78 team: Country music recording artist and songwriter Steve Azar will be a guest of the #78 Furniture Row Racing Sprint Cup team at this weekend's race at Michigan International Speedway. Azar, who has recorded a number of hits, including the "American Farmer" tribute, will sing the national anthem prior to Sunday's Pure Michigan 400. Azar is a supporter of Furniture Row Racing's Farm American program, an initiative to keep America's food supply produced in the United States.(Furniture Row Racing)(8-16-2012)
Furniture Row and RPM looking to firm up manufacturer deals: Sprint Cup teams flirting with a move to Dodge will try to land other manufacturer deals for next season now that Dodge has decided to leave the sport after this season. Richard Petty Motorsports, a Ford team, and Furniture Row Racing, a Chevrolet team, both had contemplated moves to Dodge before the announcement Tuesday that the manufacturer will not field a Sprint Cup car next year. RPM fields cars for Marcos Ambrose and Aric Almirola while Furniture Row fields a car for Regan Smith.
"RPM is still looking at all their options as far as manufacturers go," said Ambrose. "For the sport, Dodge pulling out was not a great thing. It's been really healthy to have four manufacturers in the sport. As a fan of NASCAR, I'm disappointed that Dodge has taken that choice. I understand it, though. For us, we're building to the future at RPM and I look forward to playing my part and helping them make good choices. It's exciting times for RPM."
It would appear that RPM's options are limited. Chevrolet (13 cars) and Toyota (seven) appear to be content with their number of teams. RPM likely will return to Ford, but it has added Penske Racing to its lineup for next season. Furniture Row has a technical alliance with Richard Childress Racing for cars and Earnhardt Childress Racing Engines. "What it does is it allowed us get focused on what we're doing now and what we're doing for next year," Furniture Row Racing general manager Joe Garone said. "All of our contracts were open after this year. We're starting to meet with (Childress) this weekend and start working on that." Now that it has a good idea of its manufacturer situation, Garone said the team can also focus on Smith, who's contract is up after this season. "Now that that is behind us, we'll go into that process of evaluating where we're at, looking at the whole thing and trying to get everything done," Garone said.(Sporting News)(8-11-2012)
Furniture Row to buy Penske engine program? Kurt Busch in second FRR car? UPDATE2 No Dodge: Nobody is talking on the record, still, but unofficial word from the NASCAR engine building world Sunday morning is that Barney Visser [#78 Furniture Row Racing], the Denver, Col., businessman is considering buying the Dodge engine department from Roger Penske. With Penske moving to Fords for 2013, and with Penske -- according to Jack Roush -- agreeing to run Roush-Yates Ford FR9s next season, the future of Penske's huge engine department has been the subject of much debate. Now word is that some of Penske's top engine men will be moving to the Roush-Yates engine department, and that Visser will be taking many of the rest, along with Penske's engine building equipment, and Visser will thus be switching from Chevy to Dodge. And -- though again no one is talking on the record -- it appears that Visser is very interested in hiring Kurt Busch to team with Smith next season.(MikeMulhern.net)(8-5-2012)
UPDATE: Furniture Row Racing is prepared to switch from Chevy to Dodge in 2013 if the manufacturer chooses to go in that direction. Furniture Row general manager Joe Garone said Sunday at Pocono Raceway that there have been initial talks with Dodge about making a switch and adding a second team, potentially with 2004 Sprint Cup champion Kurt Busch. "If Dodge comes to us and says here's the right deal, we would do it," Garone said. "They're trying to figure out who they're going to do it with and how they're going to do it." Furniture Row currently gets its chassis from Richard Childress Racing and engines from Earnhardt Childress Racing. Everything else is built in the organization's Denver shop. Garone said the organization intends to keep driver Regan Smith, who won at Darlington Raceway last year, beyond this season. He said there have been talks with Busch about expanding, but that would depend on finding a sponsor or a manufacturer willing to give financial help. Garone said he has not given Dodge a deadline for making a decision, but he'd like to know sooner than later. Garone said they are waiting on a decision from Dodge before completing a deal with Smith. "It's our intention to bring him back," Garone said. "With all this other stuff pending, you don't make a commitment and find there is another avenue we should have taken."(ESPN.com)(8-5-2012)
UPDATE2: Dodge put out feelers to potential new teams in February, and one of the teams negotiating with Dodge was Furniture Row Racing, the Colorado-based team that currently fields the #78 Chevy for driver Regan Smith. Furniture Row General Manager Joe Garone said as recently as Saturday at Pocono Raceway that his team was waiting to hear from Dodge on their plans for 2013. "We made a proposal to Dodge, telling them what we would need and what we had to offer," said Garone. "We expected that they would evaluate the proposals they received from various teams and get back to us, but it simply didn't happen. Weeks turned into months with no response, and eventually, it became the old joke about, `Free Beer Tomorrow' "Tomorrow never came." Garone said there were at least three teams interested in joining the Dodge camp next season. He declined to name them, but numerous reports had Richard Petty Motorsports and Phoenix Racing involved in talks with the automaker.(Godfather Motorsports)(8-7-2012)
Smith's #78 Chevy Pays Tribute to Victims of Aurora Tragedy: Regan Smith's #78 Furniture Row Chevy will pay tribute to the victims of the Aurora, Colo. tragedy during this weekend's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The movie theater where the shooting took place is approximately seven miles from the Furniture Row Racing shop in Denver. The paint scheme on Smith's car for Sunday's Brickyard 400 will include the following:
The hood of the car will showcase a ribbon, and inside the ribbon will be a memorial cross and the red and gold logo that appears on the Colorado state flag
The rear quarter panels will read Aurora, CO and the names of the 12 people who were killed in the tragedy
The rear bumper (TV panel) will include the following inscription:
Crew Chief Changes #78? UPDATE: Todd Berrier is listed as the crew chief for #78-Regan Smith, Berrier had been #47-Bobby Labonte's crew chief and GM for JTG Daugherty Racing.(7-23-2012)
UPDATE: Furniture Row Racing announced today that Todd Berrier has been named crew chief for the team's #78 Chevy driven by Regan Smith. Berrier, who replaces Pete Rondeau, will take over the crew chief duties immediately. His first race on the pit box will be Sunday's Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. In making the announcement team general manager Joe Garone said, "Todd will be a great fit with our operation. The skill sets he has acquired during a successful crew chief career will be valuable assets as we move forward with a high level of energy and anticipation."
"Furniture Row Racing has a reputation in the Sprint Cup garage for its commitment and potential," said the 42-year-old Berrier. "I welcome this opportunity and can't wait to begin my new position at Indianapolis this weekend."(Furniture Row Racing)(7-24-2012)
Crew Chief Changes #47? UPDATE and new general manager: David Hyder is listed on NASCAR's entry list as the crew chief for #47-Bobby Labonte while Todd Berrier, woh was the crew chief, is listed as the crew chief for #78-Regan Smith.(7-23-2012)
UPDATE: Approaching the Indianapolis Motor Speedway race weekend, JTG Daugherty Racing announced today significant changes that include a new general manager and crew chief change for the #47 single-car NASCAR Sprint Cup Series operation. Bobby Hutchens joins the racing organization as general manager. "Bobby Hutchens is someone I have admired for a long time and the individual I've turned to many times for direction over my 18 years as a car owner," said JTG Daugherty Racing co-owner Tad Geschickter. "In my opinion, he is the best in the business and we are fortunate to have someone of his caliber step in to help steer our team in the right direction during this important transition."
David Hyder will assume the role as interim crew chief for this weekend's race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. "We have our eye on the crew chief that we want for the long term, but couldn't get it all done in time for the next few races," Geschickter said. "We would rather make the right decision for the long term. We are fortunate to have David Hyder working at JTG Daugherty Racing every day as crew chief for the K&N Pro Series East team that we have been preparing each week for Cale Conley. He has a wealth of Sprint Cup experience and we know he will do a great job until we make our decision." Todd Berrier, who joined JTG Daugherty Racing at the end of the 2011 season as crew chief and general manager, recently accepted a position with another team that was announced today. Labonte's team is prepared for the Brickyard this weekend as they display SCOTT Products on the hood of the #47 Toyota.(JTG Daugherty Racing)(7-24-2012)
Crew Chief Changes? #78 & #47?: David Hyder is listed on NASCAR's entry list as the crew chief for #47-Bobby Labonte while Todd Berrier is listed as the crew chief for #78-Regan Smith. It had been rumored that Crew chief Pete Rondeau was out as Smith's crew chief and remain with Furniture Row Racing in another capacity.(7-23-2012)
Changes coming at Furniture Row Racing? UPDATE: Denver, CO-based Furniture Row Racing, disappointed in driver #78-Regan Smith's 26th-place standing in the NASCAR Sprint Cup series, could potentially make significant personnel changes before or during this weekend's race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
Team spokesman Dave Ferroni acknowledged the possible changes but declined to specify where they will take place. However, Ferroni said Smith — who is in the final year of his contract — will continue to drive the #78 Chevy. The team is managed by Denver native Joe Garone, who oversees crew chief Pete Rondeau and director of competition Mark McArdle.(Denver Post)(7-12-2012)
UPDATE: Crew chief Pete Rondeau will spend his final day as crew chief of Regan Smith's #78 Furniture Row Racing Chevy Sunday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Rumors of a shakeup at the Colorado-based team have circulated widely in recent days, and sources now confirm that Rondeau will step down as crew chief following Sunday's race. He will remain with Furniture Row Racing, assuming a position with the team's Research and Development wing. There is no word on who will replace him.(Godfather Motorsports)(7-13-2012)
Colorado fires on Smith's mind: To see improving performances spoiled by an overload of bad luck has been discouraging for Regan Smith in recent Sprint Cup races. But at the same time the Furniture Row Racing driver just needs to look outside of his mountain home near Denver to get a crueler perspective of tough luck. Before leaving for Kentucky last week, Smith said he could see and smell the smoke from the raging fires that have engulfed Colorado, where more than 300 homes have gone up in flames and more than 100,000 acres torched. "I love this area and it tears your insides apart seeing the destruction that has taken place," said Smith, who moved to Colorado last year to be near the team's Denver race shop. "Our recent issues are minimal compared to the fire-stricken families. I want Colorado residents to know that our thoughts and prayers are with those who have been affected and that Furniture Row Racing is very proud to represent the great state of Colorado on the NASCAR Sprint Cup circuit. I also want to give a team shout out to the brave firefighters and safety personnel who risk their lives daily in their continuing efforts to control and extinguish the fires." Though Smith's home has not been affected, the devastation of the Colorado fires will no doubt be on his mind in Saturday night's Coke Zero 400 Sprint Cup race at Daytona International Speedway.(Furniture Row Racing)(7-3-2012)
High Plains Drifter Mentors Smith for Sonoma Road Race: How did Furniture Row Racing driver Regan Smith prepare for the first Sprint Cup road-race of the season? He went to High Plains Raceway with the High Plains Drifter. Translation: High Plains Raceway is a road course east of the team's Denver shop, and the High Plains Drifter is Smith's driving coach Rick Carelli, an Arvada, Colo. native, who acquired the moniker during his successful career as a late-model, modified, stock car and truck series racer. "They even have a corner named after Rick at High Plains Raceway," said Smith, driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Farm American Chevy. "It's pretty neat that we have a road-course facility fairly close to our Denver (Colo.) shop, and to have Rick offering his expertise is a bonus." Smith and the Furniture Row Racing team were at High Plains Raceway in Deer Trail, Colo. Tuesday testing for Sunday's Toyota/Save Mart 350 road race in Sonoma, Calif. Carelli, an inductee into the West Coast Stock Car Hall of Fame, feels both Smith and the team are well prepared for the Sonoma event. "If you don't like road racing chances are you're not going to do well at it," stated Carelli, an original NASCAR Truck Series driver in 1995. "But that's not the case with Regan. He is a good student and welcomes the challenge to improve his road-racing skills. I am looking for a solid weekend out of this Furniture Row Racing team." Of his six road course starts, Smith's best finish was 16th last year at the demanding 10-turn, 1.99-mile Sonoma circuit.(Furniture Row Racing PR)(6-21-2012)
Furniture Row has talked to Kurt Busch about second team: UPDATE: #78-Furniture Row Racing general manager Joe Garone confirmed today that talks have taken place between the team and driver Kurt Busch, but said those conversations are not a result of dissatisfaction with the team's current driver, Regan Smith. "I have talked to Kurt Busch," said Garone, "but it was about a team we don't even have yet. We are working diligently on getting a second (Sprint Cup) car for next year, and I'm trying to get my hands around some of the guys that will be available going onto 2013. I wanted to make an introduction to Kurt, and just let him know what our plans are for the future." Garone said he believes Smith and Busch would make good teammates, saying, "Kurt and Regan have worked well together on the superspeedways in the past. They have drafted well together and talked well back and forth. Adding a second team would be a major boost for Furniture Row Racing, and we're all working hard to try and make that happen."(Godfather Motorsports)(5-3-2012)
UPDATE: Furniture Row Racing has met with Kurt Busch, but not in an effort to replace driver Regan Smith. "I met with Kurt about starting a second team for next year," said Joe Garone, FRR's general manager. Since FRR made its debut in 2005, it became clear to team owner Barney Visser that the Denver-based organization would eventually have to expand to two teams to compete with the NASCAR powerhouses. "It's nice that people want to talk and that they're showing interest in me driving for them. And there have been other teams interested. It's very early. (Phoenix Racing team owner James) Finch knows and the rest of the team knows that I'm a free agent. But I'm committed to racing the entire year here at Phoenix Racing and (will) talk with whoever wants to talk about racing in the future." said Busch. Although an investor expressed interest in partnering with FRR, that deal fell through. However, Furniture Row has been mentioned as one of the top candidates for the Dodge Motorsports program. The sticking point in finalizing the deal appears to be which company will build the Dodge engines. Roger Penske currently builds Dodge engines for his teams. However, with Penske Racing moving to Fords for 2013, it's unclear what the future of Dodge's engine program will be. What is missing from the Dodge equation, however, is a marquee driver. Certainly, Busch would fill that void.(Fox Sports)(5-5-2012)
Smith, Menard escape injuries in Colorado road accident: UPDATE: NASCAR drivers #78-Regan Smith and #27-Paul Menard, along with Smith's wife Megan and a friend of the Smiths, escaped injuries in a Colorado road accident today (Wednesday, approximately 8:45 a.m. MT). The foursome was on the way to a nearby ski slope. Smith lost control of his Silverado truck after hitting a patch of ice near his mountain home in Evergreen, outside of Denver. The truck slid off the road and crashed into a collection of trees. Smith and Menard will compete in Sunday's Kobalt Tools 400 Sprint Cup Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
(Funiture Row Racing/RCR)(3-7-2012)
UPDATE: Reagan Smith tweeted Wednesday evening, "Thank you to everybody for the well wishes, everybody is doing fine, shaken up but healthy. Had somebody looking out for us this morning".(3-8-2012)
Smith tours locomotive as part of unique CSX Transportation sponsorship: It wasn't the "little engine that could" that NASCAR driver Regan Smith toured. Instead, it was a big, powerful machine with a weight of approximately 125 times more than his 3,400-pound #78 Chevy stock car. Smith, who is currently residing at Daytona International Speedway in preparation for Sunday's Daytona 500 Sprint Cup season opener, took a side trip last week (Friday) to Jacksonville, Fla. to pay a visit to the CSX Transportation headquarters. The visit also included a trip to a railroad yard where Smith got up-close-and-personal to a 434,000-pound CSX locomotive. CSX Transportation, which is the largest railroad in the East with more than 21,000-mile freight network serving 23 states and portions of Canada, joined Smith's Furniture Row Racing team as an associate sponsor for the 2012 season. CSX is building upon several years of its innovative safety communications campaign and will utilize the Furniture Row Racing sponsorship as part of the "Play it Safe" campaign to urge pedestrians and motorists to exercise caution around railroad tracks. "It was both a thrill and an incredible learning experience to tour a CSX locomotive," stated Smith. "We're honored to get the opportunity to spread such an important message. "Unlike our Furniture Row/CSX Play it Safe Chevrolet, trains can't stop on a dime. In fact, they can take up to a mile to stop. So, even if they see you on the tracks, it's usually impossible for them to avoid you." Smith's Daytona 500 car will carry a bumper sticker reading, "I brake for trains."
"One incident is too many," said Cliff Stayton, Director-Community Affairs and Safety for CSX Transportation. "We hope that by getting our message out in one of the greatest sporting events in the world with a great driver, we can prevent a tragedy. We're thrilled to be working with Regan and the #78 Furniture Row Racing team."(Furniture Row Racing)(2-21-2012)
Company signs on to support Furniture Row Racing's Farm American Program: #78-Furniture Row Racing announced that Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica, Inc. has signed a letter of intent to develop a business plan of becoming a partner with the NASCAR team's Farm American program for the 2013 season. Furniture Row Racing created the Farm American program in 2010, an initiative to bring awareness to the importance of keeping America's food supply produced in the United States. Over the past 25 years, Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica, Inc., an animal health company with U.S. headquarters in St. Joseph, Mo., has supported its growth through research and development of innovative products for the livestock, equine and companion animal markets. Innovation and research are the keys to BIVI success. "There has never been a better time to show support for American Agriculture. It is a strong, vibrant business that consumers need to know more about – that's why we're so honored to work with Furniture Row Racing to develop a plan on becoming a Farm American partner in 2013," said Colin Meyers, Executive Director, U.S. Cattle Business at Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica, Inc. BIVI's cattle division introduced a new way of thinking this year, Prevention Works. A partnership with Farm American enhances this industry commitment. "The unique opportunity offered with Farm American will allow us to support consumer agriculture education that is so vital today," added Meyers. "Our Prevention Works focus is an animal health philosophy that is better for the animal, better for the producer, and better for the consumer." Joe Garone, general manager of the Denver-based Furniture Row Racing, is equally excited about establishing a partnership with BIVI. "We are thrilled that a world-class company like Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica, Inc. has shown an interest in becoming a 2013 partner with our Farm American program, which continues to attract attention in the agriculture community," said Garone "The staffs from both Furniture Row Racing and Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica are excited about working together to develop a strategic plan to further the important work of Farm American."(Furniture Row Racing)(2-10-2012)
Furniture Row Racing Announces Assoc Sponsorships: Coming off its most competitive season in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, #78 Furniture Row Racing is enjoying similar success on the sponsorship side with the addition of CSX Transportation and its railroad crossing and pedestrian safety campaign for the 2012 season. CSX Transportation, the largest railroad in the East and third largest in the United States, joins Chevrolet and Agro-Culture Liquid Fertilizers in the associate sponsorship role with all three companies complementing the team's primary sponsors – Furniture Row and Denver Mattress. Headquartered in Jacksonville, Fla., CSX Transportation maintains a more than 21,000-mile freight rail network serving 23 states and portions of Canada. Building upon several years of its innovative safety communications campaign, CSX will utilize the Furniture Row Racing sponsorship as part of the "Play it Safe" campaign to urge pedestrians and motorists to exercise caution around railroad tracks.(Furniture Row Racing)(1-25-2012)
Congrats: Regan Smith, driver of the #78 Furniture Row Racing Chevy, and Megan Mayhew were married Saturday evening, November 26 in Florida.(11-27-2011)
Furniture Row Racing Announces Assoc Sponsorships: Coming off its most competitive season in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, #78 Furniture Row Racing is enjoying similar success on the sponsorship side with the addition of CSX Transportation and its railroad crossing and pedestrian safety campaign for the 2012 season. CSX Transportation, the largest railroad in the East and third largest in the United States, joins Chevrolet and Agro-Culture Liquid Fertilizers in the associate sponsorship role with all three companies complementing the team's primary sponsors – Furniture Row and Denver Mattress. Headquartered in Jacksonville, Fla., CSX Transportation maintains a more than 21,000-mile freight rail network serving 23 states and portions of Canada. Building upon several years of its innovative safety communications campaign, CSX will utilize the Furniture Row Racing sponsorship as part of the "Play it Safe" campaign to urge pedestrians and motorists to exercise caution around railroad tracks.(Furniture Row Racing)(1-25-2012)
Military Service Shaped Life, Career of #78's Krauch: Charlie Krauch's focus will be on his garage duties with Furniture Row Racing and the No. 78 Chevrolet driven by Regan Smith this Friday at Phoenix International Raceway. But Veteran's Day, comrades past and – especially – those currently in service to the nation won't be far from the mind of the U.S. Army Vietnam War soldier. Krauch, the Denver-based team's director of transportation, served as a Specialist Fourth Class with the U.S. Army from 1971-73 maintaining heavy equipment at bases near Hue and later at Da Nang. His unit was the last to leave his first base as the American presence wore down. Krauch then was a passenger on the final Freedom Flight out of Da Nang. "My thoughts are with the soldiers in there now," said Krauch, who is proud of how America is thanking its post-9/11 service members. "But all (who have served) should be acknowledged for what they've done. We know what the active ones are going through. We need to take care of all these people (but) the guys in the past need to be recognized as well." Krauch, 59, a native of Hamburg, Pa. now living in Greeley, Colo., is grateful for the positive experiences his military service provided. "It was a job that few people wanted to do but we did it," he said of serving in Vietnam. "Learning a sense of authority was a real eye-opener, how to take (and execute) orders at a young age. "The whole experience taught me how good we have it here and how to take care of yourself and other people." On race weekends, Krauch wears a number of hats, typical of a one-car team whose members are expected to perform multiple duties. He and his truck drivers are responsible for setting up equipment and observation decks. During the race itself Krauch will haul gas cans back and forth to the Sunoco fuel station as well as handling the transport of tires to and from the Goodyear Tire Station inside the garage. He also conducts pit tours for Furniture Row guests and prospective sponsors. "I try to explain everything in layman's terms and try not to get too technical," he said. "There's a lot of information to absorb and most of the people on the tours have no clue as to what happens" behind the scenes.(Furniture Row Racing/NASCAR)(11-11-2011)
Fuel fire causes damage to #78 hauler: A fuel fire next to #78-Regan Smith's hauler created chaos -- and a huge billowing cloud of black smoke -- in the garage area following Sunday's Good Sam Club 500 at Talladega Superspeedway. Thankfully, no one was injured and the blaze was extinguished without extensive damage. Crewmen were busy disconnecting the fuel probes from gas cans and dumping excess fuel into a storage can near the front of the #78 hauler after the race, when a spark apparently ignited fuel inside one of the cans. "They had the gas can on the ground there between the tractor and the hauler," Furniture Row Racing spokesman Dave Ferroni said. "They took off the fuel probe, something sparked it and it ignited. That's all we know at this time." Everyone involved was able to scramble to safety, and several alert crewmen grabbed fire extinguishers and beat down the flames before the fire truck could get through the hundreds of crews, media and onlookers that are usually scurrying around in the garage once a race ends. Ferroni said several crew members' personal bags were damaged or destroyed by the fire, but most of the major damage was contained to the hauler itself. "There's a lot of damage to the back of the tractor, a lot of melted hoses," Ferroni said. "Somebody from Penske came over and they're going to offer us an extra tractor to take back to Denver, and hopefully we can get this one repaired."(NASCAR.com)(10-24-2011)
Smith's Talladega Helmet to Support Children: #78-Regan Smith's helmet for this weekend's NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Talladega Superspeedway will have a special paint scheme, supporting the Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation whose mission is to provide college scholarships and educational counseling to military children who have lost a parent in combat or accidents. The red, white and blue helmet for the Furniture Row Racing driver will carry the www.fallenpatriots.org web site address and logo. The helmet will be auctioned off at the Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation gala, Saturday, Nov. 12 in Riverside, Conn.(Furniture Row Motorsports)(10-21-2011)
Chevy Teams Add Pink Numbers and Bowties for Dover Race: Several Chevy teams will showcase pink numbers and Chevy Bowties in their paint schemes during this weekend's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Dover International Speedway in support of Chevrolet's ongoing efforts to help the American Cancer Society in raising awareness during National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The participating teams will have pink car numbers on the roof and doors, pink Chevrolet Bowtie on the hood and rear bumper, and pink Impala nameplate on the front bumper.
"October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and Chevrolet is extremely proud to help support the American Cancer Society's efforts to save lives and create a world with less cancer and more birthdays," said Jeff Chew, Chevy Racing Marketing Manager. "Several Team Chevy Impalas are carrying the pink awareness message, which will be seen by countless race fans, and hopefully will help to serve as a reminder that we can all do our part in helping in the fight against cancer." Chevrolet dealers across the country will be working in their communities to support the fight against breast cancer through the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer program.
In September, Chevrolet donated $29,800 to the American Cancer Society as a result of a combined 149 caution laps during the NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Atlanta Motor Speedway and Richmond International Raceway. Chevrolet had pledged to donate $200 for each caution lap that a specially-themed "Making Strides Against Breast Cancer" pink 2011 Camaro SS pace car led the field during those two races.(Team Chevy), see some of the cars are posted: #14, #27, #29, #31, #42 & #78.(9-30-2011)
Support From Farmers and Ranchers, Smith Ready for Michigan Race: When it comes to promoting a sponsor or a cause, NASCAR Sprint Cup winner Regan Smith has the special knack to articulate a message without sounding scripted. The 27-year-old Smith will be wearing two hats this weekend at Michigan International Speedway (MIS), promoting the Furniture Row Racing team as well as the Farm American program, which will be showcased on his #78 Chevy. The Farm American initiative that Smith and the Furniture Row Companies have been backing for more than a year has attained plenty of interest in the agriculture community, including a financial partner in Agro-Culture Liquid Fertilizers based in St. Johns, Mich. Furniture Row and Agro-Culture Liquid Fertilizers are teaming to promote the importance of having a stable and robust agriculture industry along with bridging the awareness gap between urban and rural America. Smith's car will also carry the Farm American paint scheme at Atlanta Motor Speedway (Sept. 4) and Kansas Speedway (Oct. 9).(Furniture Row Racing), see image of scheme on the #78 Team Schemes page.(8-18-2011)
#78 to Showcase Farm American in three races: In a continuing effort to support the American family farmer and rancher, Furniture Row Racing announced that its #78 Sprint Cup Chevy, driven by Regan Smith, will display the Farm American initiative as a major associate sponsor at three upcoming NASCAR Sprint Cup races -- Michigan (Aug. 21), Atlanta (Sept. 4) and Kansas (Oct. 9). Furniture Row Companies and its Farm American financial partner - Agro-Culture Liquid Fertilizers - are teaming to promote the importance of having a stable and robust agriculture industry along with bridging the awareness gap between urban and rural America. Based in St. Johns, Mich., Agro-Culture Liquid Fertilizers is a manufacturer and marketer of premium crop nutrition. An industry leader since 1983, Agro-Culture Liquid Fertilizers joined Furniture Row Racing's Farm American program earlier in the year as a financial and communications partner. Members of the Furniture Row Racing team will take part in Agro-Culture Liquid Fertilizers public open house -- Wednesday, Aug. 24 in Ashley, Mich. -- to celebrate the company's new manufacturing facility. The #78 Farm American Chevrolet will also appear at the event.(Furniture Row Racing), see an image of the scheme on the #78 Team Schemes page.(8-5-2011)
Smith to throw the first pitch on Wednesday: #78-Regan Smith, driver for the Denver-based Furniture Row Racing team on the NASCAR Sprint Cup circuit, will throw out the ceremonial first pitch prior to Wednesday afternoon's (Aug. 3) Major League Baseball game between the Colorado Rockies and Philadelphia Phillies [Jayski fave team] at Coors Field. Smith, who is coming off an impressive third-place finish in Sunday's Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, is looking forward to the 60-feet, 6-inch throw. "I've been fortunate to participate in many neat things throughout my career and throwing out the first pitch at a Rockies game is going to rank right up there," said Smith. "I am really excited about this opportunity and hope I can throw a strike."(Furniture Row Racing)(8-2-2011)
#78 Team Qualifies for Sprint Pit Crew Challenge: By virtue of the #78 Furniture Row Racing Chevy's NASCAR Sprint Cup SeriesTM win Saturday, May 7 at Darlington Raceway, the pit crew is now qualified for the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Pit Crew Challenge presented by Craftsman. The competition is the only indoor event sanctioned by NASCAR featuring head-to-head competition between the top-24 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series pit crews. The finishing order of the NASCAR Sprint Pit Crew Challenge presented by Craftsman will determine the order of pit selection for The Sprint Showdown or NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race.
The following teams are currently eligible: #00 Aaron's Dream Machine Toyota, #1 Bass Pro Shops Chevy, #4 Red Bull Racing Toyota, #5 GoDaddy.com Chevy, #11 FedEx Toyota, #14 Office Depot Chevy, #16 3M Ford, #17 Crown Royal Ford, #18 M&M's Toyota, #21 Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford, #22 Shell-Pennzoil Dodge, #24 Drive to End Hunger Chevy, #29 Budweiser Chevy, #33 Cheerios/Hamburger Helper Chevy, #39 US Army Chevy, #42 Target Chevy, #48 Lowe's Chevy, #78 Furniture Row Racing Chevy, and #99 Aflac Ford. Tickets are available for purchase online at www.pitcrewchallenge.com or by calling 800-745-3000.(Sprint)(5-10-2011)
Regan Smith wins at Darlington: #78-Regan Smith won the Showtime Southern 500 Sprint Cup Series race at Darlington Raceway for the first win of his career. He stayed on track during the last caution and held off #99-Edwards on a green-white-checker finish.
Edwards held on to finish second followed by #2-Keselowski, #4-Kahne (the pole sitter), #39-Newman, #11-Hamlin, #14-Stewart, #16-Biffle, #1-McMurray, and #56-Truex, Jr.
#29-Harvick and #18-Busch were called to the NASCAR hauler after the race. They were involved in the accident that brought out the final caution of the night. Then as cars were headed to pit road after the checkered flag, they parked next to one another on pit road and Harvick got out of his car to confront Busch, when Busch took off and pushed Harvick's car out of the way and into the pitwall.
The win was the 5th ever for a car #78 and the first since Jim Paschal won at Columbia, SC running the #78 on July 9, 1955 [see wins by car number page].
There were 21 lead changes among 12 drivers; 11 cautions for 46 yellow flag laps. The attendance is listed as 61,000, down from 67,000 last year.
Scheduled Race Re-Air: Wednesday, May 11 at 12:00pm/et on SPEED
For points standings, see the Drivers Points Standings page and the Owners Points Standings page. (3-7-2011)
Pole is Ragan's first in 153 starts: 102 is the number of starts #78-Regan Smith will have in the Cup series when he takes the green flag on Saturday at Texas Motor Speedway, making him the full-time active Cup driver with the most starts without a pole in the Sprint Cup Series. #6-David Ragan had the most starts among active Cup regulars without a pole until he grabbed the poled Friday for Saturday's Samsung Mobile 500, which will be his 153rd Cup start.(Sporting News)(4-9-2011)
Farm America makes 2011 debut on #78: Furniture Row Racing, which is spearheading the Farm American program, announced that the team's #78 Chevy will showcase the Farm American colors for the first time this season at this weekend's Samsung Mobile 500 Sprint Cup race at Texas Motor Speedway. Regan Smith's car at the 1.5-mile Texas oval will be known as the #78 Farm American Chevy, presented by Furniture Row Companies and Agro-Culture Liquid Fertilizers.(Furniture Row Racing) see an image of the car on the #78 Team Schemes page.(4-6-2011)
#78 Crew Chief fined over infraction: Peter Rondeau, crew chief for the #78 team in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, has been penalized for a rule violation committed last week at Auto Club Speedway. Rondeau has been fined $25,000 for violating sections 12-1 (actions detrimental to stock car racing) and 20-2.3A (improperly attached weight) of the 2011 NASCAR rule book. The violation occurred during practice on March 25.(NASCAR)(3-30-2011)
Special sponsor for the #78 at Texas: Furniture Row Racing, which competes on the NASCAR Sprint Cup circuit, announced that Agro-Culture Liquid Fertilizers has joined the team as a financial partner for its Farm American program. The announcement was made during the Commodity Classic trade show at the Tampa Convention Center. Agro-Culture Liquid Fertilizers manufactures and markets in-house formulated and branded liquid fertilizer products. Incorporated in 1983, the well-known St. Johns, Mich.-based agricultural company has worked years ahead of the industry response to the demand for environmentally friendly products. The company owns the largest fertilizer research farm in the United States dedicated to plant nutrition. The Denver, Colo.-based Furniture Row Racing team spearheaded the Farm American program in 2010 with a special paint scheme at selected races on its #78 Chevrolet, driven by Regan Smith. The Farm American program promotes the importance of U.S. agriculture, which employs directly and indirectly more than 22 million people in the American workforce. The details and schedule of the 2011 Farm-American program are still being worked out and will be announced at a later date but the first race will be at Texas Motor Speedway in April.(Farm America). To see an image of the scheme, see the #78 Team Schemes page(3-21-2011)
Another career mark for Smith: For the second time this season #78-Regan Smith set a career Sprint Cup mark. The latest was an all-time best qualifying performance of third, which he achieved Friday at Bristol Motor Speedway during time trials for Sunday's Jeff Byrd 500. His other career performance came last month in the Daytona 500 when he posted an all-time best finish of seventh. And for the second time in the first four races of 2011, Smith recorded the fastest qualified speed for a Chevrolet driver. Smith's #78 Furniture Row Chevy covered Bristol's .533-mile oval in 15.040 seconds at 127.580 miles per hour. He was a few ticks shy of #99-Carl Edwards' pole-winning numbers of 14.989 at 128.014.(Furniture Row Racing)(3-19-2011)
Agro-Culture Liquid Fertilizers joins Furniture Row Racing's Farm American Program: Furniture Row Racing announced that Agro-Culture Liquid Fertilizers has joined the team as a financial partner for its Farm American program. Agro-Culture Liquid Fertilizers manufactures and markets in-house formulated and branded liquid fertilizer products. Incorporated in 1983, the well-known St. Johns, Mich.-based agricultural company has worked years ahead of the industry response to the demand for environmentally friendly products. The company owns the largest fertilizer research farm in the United States dedicated to plant nutrition. The Denver, Colo.-based Furniture Row Racing team spearheaded the Farm American program in 2010 with a special paint scheme at selected races on its #78 Chevy, driven by Regan Smith.(FRR)(3-4-2011)
Furniture Row Racing Details Season Plans: The third day of the annual NASCAR Sprint Cup Media Tour hosted by Charlotte Motor Speedway began with a breakfast visit to the Charlotte, N.C., area's new Furniture Row retail store and its NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race team. This marked the first time in the 29-year history of the tour that participants visited a retail store for a presentation. Regan Smith, 2008 Sprint Cup rookie of the year, will drive Furniture Row Racing's (FRR) #78 Chevy. Smith was the first rookie in Cup history to finish every race he started. FRR is based in Denver, Colo., far removed from most of the other NASCAR Sprint Cup teams. Mark McArdle is FRR's managing director of competition and Pete Rondeau will resume his role as crew chief for 2011. General Manager Joe Garone spoke of the team's 2011 season plans. "We wanted to get one team working very well. We feel that with the addition of the guys we have, we are getting there. And, we would really like to get a second team going. One of the biggest advantages for us is that we are a fully funded race team, but we are actively seeking sponsorship to get a second team going."(CMS Media Tour Notes)(1-31-2011)
Furniture Row aligns w/Stewart-Haas Racing for pit crew: Regan Smith's #78 over-the-wall pit crew for Furniture Row Racing will be employed and trained by Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) during the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup season. "We are excited to partner with SHR as it relates to the pit crew," said Joe Garone, Furniture Row Racing general manager. "After reviewing SHR's program, personnel and facility we are confident that SHR will deliver a crew that meets all of our objectives." The #78 pit crew will be under the supervision of SHR pit crew coach Joe Piette, who also oversees the pit crews for Tony Stewart's #14 team and Ryan Newman's #39 team. The SHR team is based in Kannapolis, N.C. "We are very excited about our new partnership with Furniture Row Racing and having the opportunity to help contribute to the growth of their program, while also giving our pit crew the chance to compete and improve on a weekly basis," said Bobby Hutchens, director of competition, Stewart-Haas Racing. The first race for the new Furniture Row Racing pit crew will be the invitational Budweiser Shootout, Feb. 12 at Daytona International Speedway. Smith qualified for the non-points race on the basis of being a former NASCAR Sprint Cup rookie of the year (2008). The first Sprint Cup points race is the Daytona 500 on Feb. 20.(Furniture Row Racing)(1-11-2011)
Furniture Row Racing Forms Marketing Dept: Furniture Row Racing announced that it has formed a marketing division and has named Kevin Jerome to direct the team's new multi-staff entity. "The new marketing arm is dedicated and specific to Furniture Row Racing," explained team general manager Joe Garone. "This is an effort to expand our program as we seek to meet our goals of bringing a business partner on board for our #78 team and a new primary sponsor to form a multicar operation. We are excited about Kevin joining our team and leading an aggressive marketing department. He brings a wealth of sales and marketing experience that will help grow the business side of Furniture Row Racing." As marketing director for Furniture Row Racing, Jerome will oversee the team's sales, sponsorship relations, sponsorship procurement and licensing operations. Jerome joins Furniture Row Racing from Alcatel-Lucent, a global 100 telecommunications equipment manufacturer. He had been affiliated with Alcatel-Lucent for the past six years and was most recently sales director for the company's internet protocol (IP) products. "Our objective is to expand the visibility of Furniture Row Racing through the business community with potential and existing partners," said Jerome, who earned a master's degree in business from the University of Colorado. "I am leaving the premier telecommunications company to join Furniture Row Racing because I realize the potential of the motorsports company. I will take what my background has to offer and work diligently to use those skills with the goal of taking Furniture Row Racing to the next level from a marketing perspective." Jerome will lead a marketing team which includes Pat Driscoll, corporate relations, business development and new hire Skip Fox, senior account manager, licensing. Driscoll has been involved with Furniture Row Racing the past two years, leading the Farm American program. Fox is joining the race team from Richard Petty Motorsports. A native of Golden, Colo., Jerome and his wife, Debra, reside in Highlands Ranch, Colo.(Furniture Row Racing)(11-30-2010)
#78 team hauler damaged in accident near Denver UPDATE: Sirius NASCAR Radio's Sirius Speedway with Dave Moody has learned that a racecar transporter and motor home belonging to the #78 Furniture Row Racing NASCAR Sprint Cup team were demolished this morning in a massive pileup on Interstate 25 near Larkspur, Col.; about 40 miles south of Denver.
Authorities say the crash happened on northbound Interstate 25 at approximately 8:45 am local time. A spokesperson for the Colorado State Patrol said 34 vehicles, including four tractor-trailers, were involved in three separate crashes on northbound Interstate 25. Two victims required extrication from their vehicles, and approximately 20 people were transported to hospitals with non life-threatening injuries. One of the semi-trucks spilled diesel fuel onto the highway, requiring a HazMat crew to respond to the scene.
Furniture Row Racing General Manager Joe Garone told Sirius NASCAR Radio's Sirius Speedway with Dave Moody that details on what caused the crash are still sketchy. "From what I understand, our transporters came over the top of hill and saw cars all over the highway." Garone said the tractor was "for sure totalled" and the trailer seriously damaged, to the point of being unusable. "We cant get the back door of the transporter open," he said. "We'll have to cut it open." The motorcoach, a pickup truck in tow behind the coach and a golf cart in the bed of the pickup were also destroyed in the crash. The motorhome was used to house team personnel at the speedway. Driver Regan Smith's personal coach was not involved.
Race cars for this weekend's event at Homestead-Miami Speedway were not in the transporter at the time of the crash, and Garone said Richard Childress Racing has offered a transporter loaded with equipment to help FRR make it to Homesetad on time. "Mike Dillon jumped immediately on board to help," he said. "They're putting the final touches on a transporter full of equipment for us." Garone assessed the damages at more than $500,000, and said the total could climb higher once a more accurate assessment can be made. "It's a big mess," he said. "We're just grateful that nobody got seriously hurt."(Sirius Speedway)
AND A massive pile up involving 34 vehicles including 4 semis injured 18 people and closed all northbound lanes of Interstate 25 near the Greenland exit earlier today, according to officials. By 1:15 pm, all northbound and southbound lanes had been re-opened, according to Colorado State Trooper Nate Reid . Reid said the accident about 8:40 am was the result of weather conditions.(Denver Post)(11-15-2010)
UPDATE: One day after the transporter and motor coach for Furniture Row Racing were heavily damaged in a major accident on northbound Interstate 25 in Colorado, team general manager Joe Garone said that all systems are in place for this weekend's Sprint Cup season finale in Homestead, FL. The accident, which involved 34 vehicles on the icy highway, occurred Monday at approximately 8:40 a.m. near Larkspur, Colo., 40 miles south of the team's race shop in Denver. The Furniture Row vehicles were returning from Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup race in Phoenix. The two Furniture Row race cars for this weekend's Cup event will be transported from the race shop to south Florida in the team's test transporter. Once the test transporter arrives at Homestead-Miami Speedway, Richard Childress Racing will provide the #78 Furniture Row team with a fully-loaded racing transporter. "Words cannot describe how grateful we are to Richard Childress Racing for immediately stepping up and offering its support," said Garone. "Furniture Row Racing also wants to extend a sincere thank you to the NASCAR community for the outpouring of support we have received since the accident. It has been overwhelming and truly shows the spirit of brotherhood that embodies our sport."
The team's transportation drivers -- John Slingerland, Dennis LaCroix and Gary Miller -- escaped serious injuries and all have returned to the Denver area. The damaged motor coach and transporter, which housed the two Phoenix race cars and racing equipment, have been towed to an impound lot. Garone added that he was extremely proud of the team's transportation drivers for how they navigated their vehicles to avoid serious incidents under adverse weather and road conditions.
"Our tractor/trailer averted head-on collisions and our motor coach driver -- Gary Miller -- put his life on the line when he made a split-second decision to ram into the back end of the team's trailer instead of running over cars," explained Garone. "It was a brave move that most likely avoided serious injuries to others. If you saw the aftermath of the motor coach, you would know what I mean."(FRR)(11-17-2010)
Farm American scheme back on the #78: For the third time this season Regan Smith's #78 Furniture Row Racing Chevy will carry the Farm American paint scheme, which will pay tribute to the American farmer and rancher at this weekend's Pepsi Max 400 Sprint Cup race in Fontana, Calif. "There's been plenty of excitement with our Farm American car and I look forward to driving it in Southern California, which is known for its dairy and cattle farming" said Smith. "Protecting the American farmer and rancher and our nation's food supply is a cause we at Furniture Row Racing strongly believe in and having both my mother and father grow up on a farm makes it even more special for me."(Furniture Row Racing)(10-7-2010)
Smith Looking to Capitalize on Milwaukee Test: In preparation for Saturday night's short track race at Richmond International Raceway, Regan Smith and the #78 Furniture Row Racing team spent part of last week testing at the Milwaukee Mile in West Allis, Wis. "We've been showing improvement in many areas this season," said Smith, driver of the #78 Furniture Row Chevy. "But if there's one area that we feel needs extra attention it is our short track performances. As a driver I am happy that we had the opportunity to test at the Milwaukee Mile and it's one more indication of the commitment to the future that our Furniture Row Racing team is making." Smith added, "We came away from the Milwaukee test feeling that what we learned will have a positive impact, especially at the next two races in Richmond and New Hampshire."(FRR)(9-9-2010)
Furniture Row Racing re-signs Regan Smith: Furniture Row Racing announced that Regan Smith has signed a contract extension through the 2012 season to drive the team's #78 Chevy in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. Smith, the 2008 Sprint Cup Rookie of the Year, is currently in his second season driving for the Colorado-based Furniture Row Racing team. Last year he competed on a part-time basis, entering 20 races. The 26-year-old native of central New York is running a full schedule this season and will do the same in 2011 and 2012. "Regan is a young, talented driver with an outstanding future," said Joe Garone, Furniture Row Racing general manager. "He has done a great job as our athlete and also as a spokesperson for our organization. The contract extension does indeed express a serious commitment by both the race team and driver." Garone added, "We have a team of proven employees, state-of-the-art equipment and dedicated partners. We are producing increasingly positive performances and strongly feel that we're on the right path to become a contending team."
"I am both happy and humbled about the contract extension," said Smith. "Furniture Row Racing is a team on the move. I feel we've made some big gains this season and we are all encouraged about the future. I really admire the behind-the-scenes work ethic and commitment of each and every member of this team. They want to win as bad as I do and I am proud to be their driver."(Furniture Row Racing)(8-26-2010)
Farm American returns to the #78 at Bristol: The paint scheme on Regan Smith's #78 Furniture Row Racing Chevy at this weekend's Sprint Cup race in Bristol will once again pay tribute to the American farmer and rancher. The car is designed to promote the importance of U.S. agriculture, which is responsible for employing more than 22 million people in the American workforce.(Furniture Row Racing), see an image of the car on my #78 team paint schemes page.(8-17-2010)
Regan Smith offered contract extension: #78-Regan Smith has been offered a contract extension with Furniture Row Racing. Although the contract has not been signed yet, Smith says, "I'm very comfortable here and want to keep working on moving forward. I feel very good about Furniture Row. We've made a lot of progress over the last (year) and they're at the point where things are really starting to take off. Smith, 26, has forged a patient path with Sprint Cup team owner Barney Visser and Furniture Row. After being named rookie of the year in 2008 and nearly winning the fall Talladega event the same season for Dale Earnhardt Inc., Smith moved to FRM. Smith made 18 starts his first season in the #78 Chevy. This year, the organization returned to full-time competition. The team's engineering department developed a program to polish up Smith's driving skills. The organization has benefited from a technical alliance with Richard Childress Racing this season and will run Earnhardt Childress Racing engines in 2011.(Fox Sports)(8-14-2010)
Regan Smith to promote cause of protecting U.S. Food Supply: Regan Smith's Furniture Row Racing Chevy will pay tribute to the American farmer and rancher in Sunday's Brickyard 400 Sprint Cup race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The paint scheme and program will promote the importance of U.S. agriculture, which employs directly and indirectly more than 22 million people in the American workforce. Known as the #78 Farm American Chevy, the multicolored car of green, yellow, blue and white will depict farm life on the hood along with the program theme on the rear quarter panel of 'Cultivating the Future'. The United Soybean Board (USB) is the only other sponsor to jump into a partnership with the Farm American car at this time. Furniture Row Racing is hoping other suppliers and industry organizations will help share in the support for this team. Until then, Furniture Row Companies will be underwriting a majority of the Farm American sponsorship at Indianapolis and also at two additional Sprint Cup races - Aug. 21 at Bristol Motor Speedway and Oct. 10 at Auto Club Speedway.(Furniture Row Racing), see an image of the car on my #78 team paint scheme page.(7-20-2010)
Smith Breaks Wrist; Fitted with Custom-Molded Splint:Due to suffering a fractured left wrist in Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup race in Sonoma, Calif., Regan Smith has been fitted with a custom-molded splint for this weekend's LENOX Industrial Tools 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Smith, driver of the #78 Furniture Row Chevy, fractured his scaphoid bone (located at base of thumb) when he was involved in a multicar accident at Infineon Raceway on Lap 67 of 110. The 26-year-old Smith is being treated for the injury at OrthoCarolina in Charlotte.(FRR)(6-25-2010)
Rondeau Named Crew Chief for Furniture Row Racing : Furniture Row Racing announced that Pete Rondeau has been named crew chief for the #78 Chevy, driven by Regan Smith in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. Rondeau's new role will commence at this weekend's Coca-Cola 600. A 44 year-old native of Saco, Maine, Rondeau joined Furniture Row Racing following the 2009 season. His former position was director of research and development at Richard Petty Motorsports from July 2005 through the 2009 season. Prior to his employment at Richard Petty Motorsports, which was formerly known as Gillett Evernham Motorsports, Rondeau worked at Dale Earnhardt Inc. (2001 to May 2005) and Jasper Motorsports (1998-2001). During his three-plus years at DEI, Rondeau's positions included the crew chief role for both Michael Waltrip and Dale Earnhardt Jr. "Pete has brought experience and stature to our team and we feel it was in our best interests to utilize his strengths in the crew chief role," said Joe Garone, general manager of Furniture Row Racing. Regarding his new position, Rondeau said, "I have great anticipation in my role as crew chief due mainly to the commitment of Furniture Row Racing and the strong driving talent of Regan Smith."(Furniture Row Racing), no word on plans for former crew chief Ryan Coniam.(5-26-2010)
Same RCR Car Lifts Smith's Outlook for Texas: The #78 Furniture Row Chevy that Regan Smith will drive in Texas this weekend will be the same Richard Childress Racing-built car that he drove last week in Phoenix. The Phoenix race was the first time that Furniture Row Racing entered a RCR-built car since the two companies formed a technical and engineering alliance at the beginning of the season. "Texas will be our second straight race with a RCR car," said Smith. "On paper the Phoenix finish (26th) wasn't that good, but we sure made some gains after slipping with poor performances in Bristol (36th) and Martinsville (32nd). Having the same RCR car in Texas as we had in Phoenix gives us a good feeling about this weekend. We know Texas is a fast track and we're fine with that." Smith, his crew chief, Ryan Coniam, and other members of the Denver, Colo-based team got together for a post-Phoenix debriefing and a pre-Texas game plan. "It was a great meeting as we addressed many issues," noted Smith. "We felt that we were heading in the right direction, but have plenty of work ahead of us, especially with our qualifying performances. We haven't been qualifying that well and need to bump up that effort. Where you start has a lot to do on how the race plays out." After seven races, Smith is 32nd in Sprint Cup driver points.(FRR)(4-16-2010)
Smith Completes Test Session at Infineon: #78-Regan Smith completed a one-day test session on Wednesday at Infineon Raceway in preparation for the Toyota/Save Mart 350, June 18-20. Smith completed about 60 laps around the 10-turn, 1.99-mile road course in a late-model stock car provided by Chris Cook Performance. Smith placed 30th in his only NASCAR Sprint Cup Series visit to Infineon Raceway in 2007. "I'm just trying to refresh my memory of this track after not being here for a few years because there are so many nuances to the different corners," said Smith. "I grew up karting, so I love road-course racing, and I'm really looking forward to coming back in June." Smith was coached by road-course veteran Chris Cook, who has also worked with NASCAR drivers Joey Logano and Los Gatos' AJ Allmendinger, among others. "Regan did fantastic today. He's just a great athlete with great focus," said Cook. "He has a great ability to apply what he's learning, and he actually has plenty of road-course experience. We're just fine tuning things for race weekend." For special ticket packages to the Toyota/Save Mart 350, including Kasey's Korner, the 24 Special and the Jimmie Johnson® 4-Pack, call 800-870-RACE or visit infineonraceway.com.(Infineon Raceway)(4-14-2010)
Keselowski, Smith to test at Infineon:NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers Brad Keselowski and Regan Smith will take part in test sessions next week at Infineon Raceway in preparation for the Toyota/Save Mart 350, June 18-20. Keselowski (#12 Penske Dodge) will test the 10-turn, 1.99-mile road course on Tuesday, April 13, while Smith (#78 Furniture Row Chevy) will visit the circuit on Wednesday, April 14. Both will test in late-model stock cars provided by a Northern California-based race team.(Infineon PR)(4-10-2010)
Smith tests at Pikes Peak: Regan Smith's confidence meter took a jump following a successful test session Tuesday at the one-mile Pikes Peak International Raceway in Fountain, Colo. Smith and the Furniture Row Racing team will attempt to transfer the data learned at the Pikes Peak facility to its #78 Chevy for Saturday evening's Subway Fresh Fit 600k at Phoenix. Like Pikes Peak, the Phoenix oval is also one-mile in distance.(Furniture Row PR)(4-8-2010)
There's no such thing as a "home game" for Furniture Row Racing: While almost every team in the NASCAR Sprint Cup game is located within an hour of Charlotte, Furniture Row Racing is based 1,600 miles west in Denver, Colo. The closest thing it has to a backyard race is a 1,200-mile round trip to Kansas City. Kan. The Mile-High City, you see, is Barney Visser's hometown. Denver is the headquarters for his five furniture-related businesses - 330 stores in 31 states. But having Denver as a home base means his race team's three truck drivers will collectively trek nearly 100,000 miles this year for 38 events. It's the equivalent of four trips around the globe, and 40,000 miles more than Charlotte-area teams must cover. "NASCAR racing is a strong marketing tool," said team manager Joe Garone, a former Cup crew chief and ex-director of NASCAR's Research & Development Center. "For Barney, it made sense to get involved. When you're a national company and you need a national advertising campaign, it doesn't get any better than this." Calling Denver home offers a unique challenge, but nothing insurmountable.
For instance, Furniture Row Racing leases engines from Hendrick Motorsports. That may not sound like a towering hurdle, but because engines have to be installed before racecars leave the shop, the Denver team must pick up its powerplants five to seven days ahead of the competition in North Carolina. "We've got a good system that makes it go easy," said Regan Smith, the driver of the #78 Chevrolets and the 20th starter in today's Food City 500 at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway. "Barney's got over-the-road trucks that are constantly on the road to his stores. They schedule them so that they're in Charlotte to pick up the engines at Hendrick, then they're trucked to a central location, where another truck picks up that crate on its way back to Denver. That's the toughest part of being out here - and we've got that covered."
Mark McArdle, hired in January as the team's managing director of competition, added, "When you race as often as we do, it inevitably comes down to planning. We just have to do a little bit better job of it than everybody else." When Visser decided to venture into big-time NASCAR racing in 2005 for a couple of events, it made sense to do so out of Denver, where he could keep an eye on his investment. "We had absolutely nothing but an empty building," said Garone, a native of Colorado. "We had to start from dead scratch with cars and people." The team was launched with a few locals turning the wrenches, but Garone knew he would also have to eventually import personnel from Charlotte to be more competitive. Of late, that hasn't been as daunting a task. The nation's economic downturn caught many teams in a financial chokehold. Many of them survived by sacking employees, but others simply shut down.
McArdle was among the legions affected when Richard Petty Motorsports merged with another team. Ryan Coniam, an engineer and former sprint car driver, was ready for a change of scenery, and veteran car chief Pete Rondeau was ripe for a move. Garone hired all three, and Coniam was promoted to crew chief almost overnight when his predecessor chose to return to the Charlotte area. "I love it in Denver," Coniam said. "I live right downtown and can walk from my house to the (Colorado Avalanche hockey) games. I'm originally from Toronto, and the culture of the city seems more like a Canadian city to me, more like home. Avs games, Broncos games, and in 45 minutes I can be in the mountains." The toughest part of convincing people to move two time zones away, Garone said, is first convincing them to give Denver a look. After that, he said, it's a relatively easy sell. "They see that we have a full-blown Cup team with all the same stuff they have in Charlotte," Garone said. "Then they see Colorado and the things that are different, and the quality of life that's available if you're into hunting or fishing or skiing. It kind of hooks them. It makes sense to them: 'I get to be in another state and still do my craft.' It's unique."
And unlike the Charlotte area, Furniture Row is the only game in town. "We don't have a revolving door of people walking in here looking for jobs," Coniam said. "The guys in the shop are focused on their job, not worrying about guys who'll come in and take their job for $100 less a week. Our guys can stay on the same page, and that's an intangible benefit. You can't even put a value on that." By 2008, with 40 races over three part-time seasons under its belt, the team had enough of a foundation to tackle the full slate with driver Joe Nemechek. But when the American economy went off the cliff, Visser had to cut back across the board, race team included, to survive the fall. Nemechek opted out of a contract that guaranteed a full season behind the wheel, and Smith, the 2008 rookie of the year, was hired. There was a plus to pulling back, Garone said, in that more time could be spent fine-tuning the cars for competition. By midseason, the downside had gotten an upper hand.
"Not being in NASCAR full-time was hurting us from a marketing perspective, and definitely in performance," Garone said. "Even the simplest things - the road crew, the relationships within the team - it was like starting all over at every race. If you're not out there every week, you get rusty and everybody's not on the same page, even down to communication between the driver and crew chief. You're better prepared, but you're not in tune." Even so, later in the year, a financial rebound convinced Visser, who avoids interviews, to make the commitment to gear up for the full schedule in 2010. Garone has negotiated a technical alliance with Richard Childress Racing that will include cars and engineering expertise, and he added that FRR's game plan includes expansion to a two-car operation. "Initially, as we were building the program, there were a lot of things to overcome, but we've worked most of that," Garone said. "There's no question in my mind that we can achieve our goals being right where we are."(Fayetteville Observer)(3-22-2010)
#78 team getting RCR cars: #78-Furniture Row Racing's technical relationship with Richard Childress Racing is more than just having use of the #07 owner points for the first five races of the 2010 season. Furniture Row now is getting cars built by RCR and also has access to RCR data. The technical alliance is similar to the Stewart-Haas relationship with Hendrick Motorsports, but Furniture Row still has a contract through the end of this year to lease engines from Hendrick. "A lot of the initial part of working together is literally learning how to work together and how we're going to do that," Furniture Row general manager Joe Garone said. "That's what we're going through right now." In the past, Furniture Row has gotten chassis from Laughlin Racing Products/Ortec Racing and still has a contract with the company for a few more cars. Garone said that the move to RCR will allow Furniture Row to have a little more control over the chassis as well as the access to RCR's information. "For us, as a single-car team, some of the tools that it takes with simulation programs and chassis measurement and having control of your tolerances for your modeling simulation is very difficult when you're not building your own chassis," Garone said. "Being on their chassis gets us on the same page, and it also gives them another person that's on their chassis that is sharing information back to them through all the different facets of testing and simulation." The team will continue to use its own pit crew. The Furniture Row pit crew is the same pit crew that does Kevin Harvick Inc.'s Nationwide Series car.(SceneDaily)(3-4-2010)
Furinture Row, RCR expected to finalize alliance: UPDATE 2: #78-Furniture Row Racing will put the finishing touches on its technical alliance with Richard Childress Racing this week. A meeting is scheduled on Friday between principles of the two companies in hopes to strengthened the single car operation at FRR and in essence create a satellite fourth car for RCR. "While the team may look the same on the outside, eternally we're much stronger," said Joe Garone, general manager of Furniture Row Racing. "One of the assets with the alliance with Richard Childress is our ability to be secure in the top 35. "During the last quarter, we decided we needed to run the full season. Around May or June, we realized how much it hurt us not to run the full season. We can race on the Furniture Row sponsorship, but it wouldn't allow us to expand to a second car. Our primary goal is to have the #78 team run at 100 percent efficiency." FRR will continue its partnership with Kevin Harvick Inc., with the pit crew. FRR contracts the over-the-wall crew who work at KHI full-time and pit Harvick's Nationwide Series cars.(Fox Sports)(1-29-2010)
UPDATE: On the surface it looks basically the same. But behind the scenes it's a whole new look for the Furniture Row Racing team, which made significant personnel moves during the offseason as it readies to return to a full 36-race NASCAR Sprint Cup schedule in 2010. The team's driver (Regan Smith), car number (78) and car manufacturer (Chevy) remain the same for the new campaign, which kicks off Sunday Feb. 14 with NASCAR's traditional season opener -- the Daytona 500. But when you get beyond the driver, car make and car number, the Denver-based Furniture Row team is quite different than it has been in recent years. For starters, more than 20 new employees were hired during the offseason, increasing the team's growing staff to more than 60. Along with the new hires, Furniture Row Racing went even a step further to enhance its program by forming a technical and engineering alliance with Richard Childress Racing. "Being a single-car team against the mega, multicar teams has put us at a huge disadvantage over the years," said Garone. "Now that we have formed an alliance with RCR, we will have the ability to be secured in the top 35 and keep a better pace with the other multicar teams. RCR has always been a leader and a winner, and we are proud to be affiliated with Richard Childress and his outstanding organization."(Furniture Row Racing PR)(1-29-2010)
UPDATE 2: Furniture Row General Manager Joe Garone told Sirius NASCAR Radio's Sirius Speedway with Dave Moody that as part of the team's new technical alliance with Richard Childress Racing, Childress is now an owner of FRR. Garone said the details of the technical alliance are not fully ironed out, but will give the team a major boost in engineering. He confirmed that the team will not utilize Earnhardt-Childress Racing Engines, choosing instead to continue their relationship with Hendrick Engines.(1-29-2009), See the 2010 Owners Points Standings page [totally unofficial] for how the owners points are stacking up for the first five races.(1-29-2010)
Furniture Row Racing hires McArdle & Crew Chief UPDATE: Sirius Speedway has learned that former Richard Petty Motorsports Director of Competition Mark McArdle will resurface as Director of Competition at #78 Furniture Row Racing next season. McArdle was suspended and subsequently released by RPM after a confrontation with team owner George Gillett at Richmond International Raceway in mid-September, and said he is looking forward to his new position. "It's good to be working for someone I can really get behind," said McArdle. "Once Ray Evernham left RPM, things became more and more difficult. But (Furniture Row owner) Barney Visser is in it for all the right reasons, and he's putting the right people in place to be extremely competitive in 2010. We're just trying to wrap things up right now, and I expect an official announcement in the next day or two." Ryan Coniam will serve as crewchief on Smith;s #78 Chevy, after working with rookie Max Papis at Germain Motorsports a year ago. Pete Rondeau, who served as Dale Earnhardt, Jr.'s crewchief in 2005, has signed on as carchief.(Sirius Speedway)(12-31-2009)
UPDATE - Furniture Row Racing Fills Three Key Positions: Furniture Row Racing announced today that it has filled three key positions as the Colorado-based NASCAR team prepares to run a full Sprint Cup schedule in 2010 with driver Regan Smith. Ryan Coniam has been promoted to crew chief while Mark McArdle joins the team as managing director of competition and Pete Rondeau, also new to the team, will serve as car chief for Smith's #78 Chevy.
"What's exciting about Ryan, Mark and Pete spearheading three essential areas is that it brings a special synergy to Furniture Row Racing," said team general manager Joe Garone. "I worked with Mark back when we helped start PPI Motorsports in the Cup series. Ryan and Regan worked together at Ginn Racing and Mark and Pete were teammates at Richard Petty Motorsports. We have good chemistry which most likely will shorten the all-important learning curve. The addition of these three individuals has generated a new wave of optimism to our team."
Coniam, 30, a native of Burlington, Ontario (a Toronto suburb) joined Furniture Row Racing in early November following two years as a race engineer at Michael Waltrip Racing (MWR). During his stint at MWR he was the race engineer for Michael McDowell's entry in 2008, and the past year he was liaison between MWR and Germain Racing while overseeing the race engineering duties for driver Max Papis. Coniam began his engineering Cup career in August 2005 with MB2 Motorsports and worked the following two seasons with the race team, which eventually merged with Dale Earnhardt Inc. A 2000 mechanical engineering graduate from Georgian College in Barrie, Ontario, Coniam is a former sprint car racer in the World of Outlaws and All Star Circuit of Champions series. "I am both excited and humbled to have been offered a position that I have dreamed about," said Coniam, son of Canadian Motorsports Hall of Fame inductee Warren Coniam. "With the driving talent of Regan plus the resources at Furniture Row Racing, I am full of confidence that we can achieve success in 2010." McArdle, a successful veteran of Indy Car and Stock Car racing, previously worked at Richard Petty Motorsports where he served as vice president and managing director of competition. The 52-year-old La Crosse, Wis. native was a renowned engine builder and technical specialist in Indy Car Racing, dating back to 1986. He was the engine builder for two of Penske Racing's Indianapolis 500 victories -- Rick Mears in 1991 and Emerson Fittipaldi in 1993. McArdle later joined Ilmor Engineering and served as the engine builder for the Mercedes Benz pushrod engine project that powered Al Unser Jr. to the Indy 500 win in 1994. McArdle moved to stock car racing in the fall of 1999 as technical director with PPI Motorsports. After two years at PPI, he became general manager of Yates Racing Engines from the fall of 2001 to the spring of 2003. He joined Evernham Motorsports (now Richard Petty Motorsports) in May 2003 where he directed the team's engine program for more than six years, and at the end of the 2007 season was named managing director of competition. "I am full of enthusiasm and eagerly look forward to this new endeavor," said McArdle, who has been involved in 18 career Cup wins in various capacities. "What is appealing is the team's unyielding commitment to build on its already solid foundation."
Rondeau, 44, joins Furniture Row Racing from Richard Petty Motorsports where he served as the team's director of research and development since July 2005. Prior to his employment at Richard Petty Motorsports, which was formerly known as Gillett Evernham Motorsports, Rondeau worked at Dale Earnhardt Inc. (2001 to May 2005) and Jasper Motorsports (1998-2001). During his three-plus years at DEI, Rondeau's positions included the crew chief role for both Michael Waltrip and Dale Earnhardt Jr. "It's an exciting time at Furniture Row Racing and I am happy to be joining the organization," said Rondeau, a native of Saco, Maine. "This is a great opportunity and can't wait to kick off the 2010 season at Daytona."(Furniture Row Racing)(1-4-2010)
Revised Scheduled [18 races] 2009 Sprint Cup Races for the #78 team:
Feb. 15, Daytona 500 (finished 21st)
March 1, Las Vegas (20th)
April 5, Texas [added](31st)
April 18, Phoenix (28th)
April 26, Talladega (15th)
May 9, Darlington (21st)
May 31, Dover [added](22nd)
June 7, Pocono (33rd)
June 28, New Hampshire (27th)
July 4, Daytona (12th)
July 26, Indianapolis (39th)
Aug. 22, Bristol [added] (27th)
Sept. 6, Atlanta [added] (DNQ)
Sept. 12, Richmond (40th)
Sept. 27, Dover
Oct. 11, California [added]
Nov. 1, Talladega
Nov. 15, Phoenix
Nov 22, Homestead [added]
Furniture Row Racing hires McArdle & Crew Chief: Sirius Speedway has learned that former Richard Petty Motorsports Director of Competition Mark McArdle will resurface as Director of Competition at #78 Furniture Row Racing next season. McArdle was suspended and subsequently released by RPM after a confrontation with team owner George Gillett at Richmond International Raceway in mid-September, and said he is looking forward to his new position. “It’s good to be working for someone I can really get behind,” said McArdle. “Once Ray Evernham left RPM, things became more and more difficult. But (Furniture Row owner) Barney Visser is in it for all the right reasons, and he’s putting the right people in place to be extremely competitive in 2010. We’re just trying to wrap things up right now, and I expect an official announcement in the next day or two.” Ryan Coniam will serve as crewchief on Smith;s #78 Chevy, after working with rookie Max Papis at Germain Motorsports a year ago. Pete Rondeau, who served as Dale Earnhardt, Jr.'s crewchief in 2005, has signed on as carchief.(Sirius Speedway)(12-31-2009)
Jay Guy, Furniture Row Racing Mutually Part Ways: Furniture Row Racing and crew chief Jay Guy have mutually agreed to part ways as was announced today by the team's general manager Joe Garone. "We wish Jay all the best -- he is a good friend who worked hard to help bring us to where we are at," said Garone. "Jay was a true asset to our organization the past three years and we support him with his new opportunity." Garone went on to say that the atmosphere at the Denver-based shop is upbeat as the team prepares to compete in all of the 36 NASCAR Sprint Cup races in 2010. "The future is exciting at Furniture Row Racing," added Garone. "We are continuing to expand our resources to run a full schedule next year and are on the right track towards giving our driver Regan Smith the best tools possible to race competitively on a weekly basis."(Furniture Row Racing), no word on the new crew chief for Regan Snith will be.(11-30-2009)
New crew chief for Keselowski: Jay Guy will be crew chief for Brad Keselowski and the #12 Penske Racing Dodge in 2010. Guy heads to Penske Racing following a three-year stint at Denver-based Furniture Row Racing. The 36-year-old Lancaster, Penn., native says he's looking forward to building a program around a driver with Keselowski's potential. "(Keselowski) has definitely won a lot of races in the Nationwide Series," Guy said. "There's a great upside to him. This is what I've worked for the last 20 years, to have an opportunity such as this with a company like Penske Racing."(FoxSports), no word on what plans are for former #12 crew chief Roy McCauley.(11-30-2009)
#78 team tests at Pikes Peak: To prepare for another strong Phoenix performance in Sunday's Checker O'Reilly Auto Parts 500 at Phoenix International Raceway, the Denver, Colo-based Furniture Row #78 Chevy team of Regan Smith conducted a test session earlier in the week at the one-mile Pikes Peak International Raceway in Fountain, Colo. "We had another good test session at Pikes Peak," added Smith. "The last time we raced in Phoenix we also tested at Pikes Peak and it was a huge benefit. We're looking for similar results this weekend. We really want to close out the season on a positive note with solid results in Phoenix and at the season finale in Homestead (Nov. 22)." Running a part-time 20-race Sprint Cup schedule in 2009, the Furniture Row team is gearing up to run a full 36-race slate in 2010. "There's a lot of buzz at our Denver race shop right now," offered Smith. "Both the team roster and the shop size are expanding. We all have an upbeat feeling heading into next season. Running all 36 races is going to make us a better team. It's been fun and we're even going to have more fun."(FRR)(11-12-2009)
Congrats to Jay Guy: It's a Baby Girl for Carrie and Jay Guy. Carrie Guy, wife of #78-Furniture Row Racing crew chief Jay Guy, gave birth to the couple's first child – Ansley Sophia – Wednesday, October 21, 2009 at Sky Ridge Medical Center in Lone Tree, Colo., a suburb of Denver. Ansley weighed in at 8 pounds, 1 ounce and was 21 inches long. Word from the maternity ward is that mother and the little Guy are doing fine.(10-22-2009)
Furniture Row headed to California with eye on 2010: The preparation to be one of the top 35 teams in points following the fifth race in 2010 continues for driver #78-Regan Smith and Furniture Row Racing this weekend in Fontana, Calif., site of the Pepsi 500 Sprint Cup event at Auto Club Speedway. Furniture Row Racing announced in August that it will run a full Sprint Cup schedule in 2010, compared to a part-time slate of 20 races this season. Teams, which are secured in the top 35 in points following the fifth race (Bristol) next year, will have the luxury of gaining an automatic qualifying berth, something the young Furniture Row organization has never experienced. "With California being the second race in 2010, we added it to our schedule recently so we can acquire data for our important return trip in February," said team general manager Joe Garone. "We wanted to make sure that we'll have a good data book for each of the first five races next year. Our goal is to be in the top 35 and not have to worry about qualifying for the main event." Furniture Row's original 2009 schedule included two of the first five races of the season -- Daytona and Las Vegas. The organization added the other three sites -- Atlanta, Bristol and Fontana -- once the decision was made to run the 36-race Cup schedule next season.(Furniture Row Racing PR)(10-8-2009)
Smith's #78 Chevy to Showcase World Vision at RIR: The Furniture Row Racing Chevrolet driven by Regan Smith will carry a special paint scheme for the Sept. 12th Saturday night NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Richmond International Raceway. Smith's car will be fully-adorned in the colors of World Vision, a Christian humanitarian organization based in Federal Way, Washington. The entire space on the car is being donated to World Vision by the team's sponsor -- the Denver-based Furniture Row Companies, one of the largest family-owned specialty home furnishings and bedding retailers with more than 330 stores in 31 states. The idea to donate the space came from Furniture Row owners Barney and Carolyn Visser, long-time World Vision supporters. World Vision is dedicated to working with children, families and their communities worldwide to reach their full potential by tackling the causes of poverty and injustice. More than 40,000 aid workers and volunteers comprise the international relief and development organization. "This innovative partnership with Furniture Row, one of World Vision's most faithful donors, will help bring the needs of the world's most vulnerable children to followers of NASCAR," says Richard Stearns, president of the international Christian organization. Joe Garone, president and general manager of Furniture Row Racing, said, "The global care-giving services that World Vision provides to children and families are truly inspiring and we are proud to offer our assistance in bringing this incredible humanitarian story to the NASCAR community." (Furniture Row Racing). See images of the scheme on my #78 Team Schemes page.(9-1-2009)
Furniture Row adds two more races: Furniture Row Racing driver #78-Regan Smith knows what he’s doing next season, and, in a way, that will dictate a little bit of what he’ll do the rest of the 2009 season. With the Furniture Row Racing team returning to a full-time schedule in 2010 after scaling back to a part-time schedule in 2009, the team has added next week’s race at Atlanta and Auto Club Speedway in California in October to help Smith prepare for next year. The team was at the track in Rockingham, N.C., earlier this week testing and also does some testing at Pikes Peak in Colorado, which is near its Denver base. The team will also need to build road-course cars for next year.(SceneDaily)(8-27-2009)
Smith may have full-time ride in 2010; with a sponsor? UPDATE: Regan Smith, the 2008 Sprint Cup rookie of the year, has agreed in principal to drive the #78 car for Furniture Row Racing in 2010, sources close to the situation said on Saturday. Smith is driving a part-time schedule for the Colorado-based team this season, but tentative plans are to run a full schedule next year. Smith was left without a fulltime ride after his Dale Earnhardt Inc. team was shut down due to lack of sponsorship following 2008. He has competed in 11 races this season for Furniture Row, with a top finish of 12th at the July 4 race at Daytona.(ESPN)
AND At the recent gathering of Farm Bureau PR and Communications professionals in Denver, CO, Furniture Row Racing, unveiled a new NASCAR paint concept to support and bring awareness to the ag industry as a whole; The Car of the Heartland…Official Car of the American Farmer. The people at Furniture Row Racing know and understand the hard work and devotion that ag producers across the country have made to their industry and their way of life. Furniture Row is making a substantial financial commitment to promote that hard work and devotion and to try and put American agriculture back on the radar screen of consumers across the country. The attendees of the unveiling were moved and excited by the new car. Julie Murphy, Communications Director for Arizona Farm Bureau was brought to tears by the car and what it represents. "As a producer, I am just so grateful," she said. The Car of the Heartland represents a revolutionary change in NASCAR, one not seen in 60 years of the sport. Traditionally, car designs have been a mish-mash of logos and brands, confusing fans and diluting effectiveness. Furniture Row understands that what individual cars need is a focused message, one that fans can follow, and they are leading the way with their new Car of the Heartland. Going forward, Furniture Row needs help from Farm Bureau in the promotion of the Car of the Heartland. They need Farm Bureau members to talk to their friends and acquaintances and help tell the story of the car and promote the message of American agriculture. Colorado Farm Bureau will do its part to help promote the car and raise awareness with the public. Other industry groups are on board to help promote that car as well. If all goes according to plan, the car should run in 36 races next season.(Colorado Farm Bureau), no comment from team about this news.(8-16-2009)
UPDATE: Furniture Row Racing announced that it will run the full 36-race NASCAR Sprint Cup schedule in 2010. The race team also announced that Regan Smith will continue to drive the #78 Chevy next season. The decision to return to a full-time schedule was based on the positive effect the race team along with NASCAR's popularity have had on the Furniture Row Companies marketing and advertising programs. The race team, which ran a full schedule in 2006, 2007 and 2008, also stated that it will continue to search for additional sponsorship partners, in the form of primary or associate to help with costs and possibly grow the race team. The #78 Furniture Row team was originally scheduled to compete in 12 races in 2009. Four additional races have been added to the schedule, including Saturday night’s race at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway. According to Garone, there is a good possibility of adding more races.(Furniture Row Racing PR)(8-19-2009)
Born on Date: January 23, 2002