Perhaps the rumors of Furniture Row Racing’s demise are greatly exaggerated.
According to Adam Stern, the team has grown increasingly confident over the last week that they will be able to retain Martin Truex Jr. AND Toyota. That’s certainly a change of tune from a week ago when Truex said they need money, plain and simple, and he wouldn’t rule out changing teams in 2019.
➖ Unclear yet where any added funds would be coming from, but FRR has been actively pitching sponsors.
➖ The team had no comment. pic.twitter.com/gnrkpicAu9
— Adam Stern (@A_S12) August 22, 2018
The team remaining with Toyota is the biggest story here. Their relationship with TRD and Joe Gibbs Racing combined with Cole Pearn’s big brain is the sole reason they won the championship in 2017. Martin Truex Jr. is a top-level driver but the car and set up likely played a bigger role in the championship than some people are willing to admit.
Furniture Row Racing still needs sponsorship, however. With 5-Hour Energy leaving after the season and taking a rumored $10M with them, the team needs a new sponsor. Team Owner Barney Visser said he will not use his own money to fund the team. Visser used his own money for the better part of a decade, it’s a completely reasonable thing for him to say.
With FRR believing they can retain Truex their pitches to potential sponsors must be going well. Signing a driver for next season and then ultimately having to close the team would be a terrible look. Truex has had some bad luck career-wise, FRR is the first place he’s truly succeeded at since he raced for Dale Jr. in the Xfinity Series. FRR closing would be apropos for Truex’s career, unfortunately.
Nothing is set in stone but FRR closing would be bad for the sport. One year removed from winning the championship and being unable to find sponsorship is a bad look for the sport as a whole. Hopefully, Brett Griffin’s “earth-shattering” news he talked about on Door Bumper Clear isn’t FRR related.
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