NASCAR rumors flowing

The winds are blowing around many rumors and facts in the NASCAR garage area these days. Here are a few that has peaked my interest.

Stewart-Haas Racing is boldly trying to sign Kurt Busch to a multi-year contract to drive a fourth car for the team in 2014. Gene Haas, who is a co-owner of the team with Tony Stewart, wants to take his non-racing company’s name to Victory Lane. Haas and the Furniture Row Racing driver began talking about the possibility of him coming to SHR last month during a function in Indianapolis. Not long after that, SHR offered Busch a contract to expand the organization to four teams with Stewart, Kevin Harvick and Danica Patrick. Busch has offers from several other teams, including one from Furniture Row that was given to his attorneys on Friday. Haas said nothing has been signed as far as he knows, but he is optimistic Busch will come to SHR.

Jamie McMurray has cut off the rumor mill of his departure with Earnhardt Ganassi Racing. McMurray and his current sponsors will be back in the No. 1 Sprint Cup car in 2014. With a 19th place finish at Bristol, McMurray retained the 16th spot in the Chase for the Championship points standings.

Richard Childress Racing has been making some moves in the Nationwide Series by moving up Ty Dillon to drive the No. 3 car next year. D.G. Yuengling & Son are co-owners of the team and will use the Yuengling Light Lager as one of the primary team sponsors.

Austin Dillon is speculated as the replacement for the No. 29 car vacated by Kevin Harvick earlier this year. RCR will mostly change the car number to reflect Austin’s No. 3, he campaigned in Nationwide. Austin has experience in the Cup series, driving for his grandfather, Tim Finch and subbing for Tony Stewart.

Juan Pablo Montoya is searching for a winning ride in 2014. He visited the Andretti Motorsports for a possible return to the IndyCar series next year. Montoya is a past Indy 500 winner and has experience in Formula 1. Montoya has been out of open wheel racing since his departure from F-1 in 2006.

A matter that has caused NASCAR officials some issues is the recent report that the Hall of Fame in Charlotte reported a $1.6 million loss in the past fiscal year ending in June. The $200 million auto racing museum, which opened in 2010, has run deficits since it inception. The Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority, the group in charge of the museum, is revamping sales and advertising strategies to hopefully turn things around.

NASCAR has a stringent drug policy for crew members and drivers to adhere to each year. Some crew members at Michael Waltrip Racing have been suspended by team and NASCAR officials for violating the Substance Abuse Policy.

Drugs to cure illnesses and aid in rehabilitation must be regulated so that fans, officials and racing participants will not be injured on race day.

Contact Eddie Thomas at ethomas@newsandsentinel.com