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via Getty

via Getty

Stewart-Haas Racing’s future plans in the NASCAR Cup Series have been a hot topic in the garage. Going by the rumor market, Adam Stern from SBJ reported that SHR is considering selling one or more charters ahead of the 2025 season. While it is hard to believe a floating rumor, given that NASCAR insiders like Freddie Kraft are pretty sold on the idea, it looks like things are indeed heating up inside the Tony Stewart camp regarding their plans for the Cup Series.

Tony Stewart and Gene Haas co-own and run the operations for their NASCAR team, and things have been pretty grim for the team of late. However, there are bigger factors at play that could weigh in on the decision for SHR to sell their charters. One of them is losing out on their Tier 1 status with their manufacturer, Ford, and they are yet to pen down an extension to their current partnership that ends in 2024.

Why will Tony Stewart have to reconsider his plans to run the SHR team?

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The charter prices are all over the place, with Spire Motorsports inflating it to $40 million with the purchase last season. This was the argument made by Kraft during the Door Bumper Cleaner podcast show. Moreover, the spotter of the #23 car also confirmed that rumors about Tony Stewart and his team selling more than one of their charters are indeed true.

Obviously, you see the rumors that Stewart Haas Racing is selling charters, probably two of them, I would say. I’ve heard rumors like Gene Haas he’s funding a damn F1 team himself. So I don’t think he really gives a s**t about the money, and you hear the numbers are lower. It’s probably because Gene just wants to get rid of him; why would he not at this point, the way they are running and stuff?” Kraft said.

Joining in the discussion, Brett Griffins also stated the importance of Tier 1 status, which SHR might have conceded to Front Row Motorsports. “When you hear Tier 1 support, you’re talking $10 million a year coming from the manufacturer, plus a lot of perks. So if you lose that, then I could see why selling a charter would be attractive to him. But if he has that, I don’t see why it would be attractive to him.”

The only thing that can overturn the fortunes of the team is the way their drivers perform on the racetrack. And going by their recent runs, they are slowly but steadily gaining ground on the rival teams.

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Stewart Haas Racing’s season so far

Tony Stewart, before the start of the season, had made it clear that they needed results. While the early outing was concerning, the drivers in the past few races have started delivering consistent performances. Chase Briscoe and Ryan Preece both delivered the goods during last weekend’s race at Martinsville Speedway, finishing inside the top 10 positions. This was Preece’s first top-10 result, while it was a third for Briscoe in the No. 14 SHR Ford Mustang.

Noah Gragson from the No. 10 team was the only driver to have started off the season on a positive note with two top-10 finishes out of three races. He did come close to repeating the feat twice in the short-track races at Phoenix and Richmond, finishing P12 on both occasions. However, Tony Stewart and Co.’s rookie driver, Josh Berry, has yet to join his teammates in raking in any big performances, but he has shown signs of potential.

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Although it might be a good sight for Tony Stewart to see his teams perform consistently, a win could see them turn their fortunes for good.

Read More: Tony Stewart Beating NHRA’s Big Guns en Route to Hometrack Victory Is the Starting Point of an Uphill Road