Kevin Harvick Inc. confirmed that Ron Hornaday's new crew chief Dave Fuge has left the team and the reigning Truck Series Champion is in need of a crew chief.
Daytona was the first race for the new pairing of Hornaday and Fuge. In practice, Horn was 11th and 12th fastest in practices and qualified fifth for the NextEra Energy Resources 250.
Horn ran the first 32 laps of the race in the top five, running as high as second, and ran one-two following Elliot Sadler for 11 laps.
Unfortunately he was wrecked in a bump-drafting incident with Ricky Carmichael on Lap 33. It took the No. 33 team 56 laps to make repairs. Horn ran the final 12 laps, finishing 27th.
Obviously, I saw nothing in Horn's performance that would indicate a reason for releasing Fuge based on the race.
For co-owners DeLana and Kevin Harvick to make a move like this, I can only speculate there is more to the story and something must have happened that was detrimental to the team.
While it leaves the team, Horn, and his No. 33 team looking for a replacement, all the "big-name" crew chiefs already have jobs.
The good news is the next race isn't until March 6th so they have time to look for a replacement.
While working on this article, I learned via my Hornaday Nation group that is run through Kevin Harvick's Fan Central of another crew chief change in the Cup series, totally changing my article's ending to pure 100% speculation.
Matt Kenseth's crew chief Drew Blickensderfer has been replaced and Todd Parrott will replace him according, to Jayski.com.
Blickensderfer will assume a roll in Roush Fenway Racing's Research and Development department.
But what if there was a crew chief position available in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series?
Would he make the move to get back on the pit wagon or just stay at RFR?
What if I was to say that it was a position that would pair him up with his father-in-law? You see Blickensderfer is married to Candice Hornaday and I doubt he would pass up the chance to work with the legend.
So I won't be surprised if we'll hear in the next few days that KHI has hired Blickensderfer to be Horn's crew chief.
I believe this is a winning move for the team to make.
Photo Credit: kevinharvickinc.com