Chip Ganassi confirmed to the AP Monday morning during the Xfinity race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway that Jamie McMurray would not return to the #1 car in 2019.
Monday was the first official confirmation that McMurray would not return. Up until this point, it was just a rumor, a really solid and factual rumor. Much like the rumor as to who will replace McMurray, will it be Kurt Busch or will Chip Ganassi take the same route he did with McMurray and put a relative unknown in the car?
Ganassi on Monday said he has a plan in place for Jamie McMurray should he want to retire from full-time driving. Chip said he will field a third car in the Daytona 500 for Jamie in 2019 and then transition him to being an advisor. Essentially the same position Dario Franchitti has on the IndyCar side at Ganassi.
McMurray has not given Ganassi an answer on if he’ll take him on that offer or if he will see full-time driving employment in 2019.
Over a 16-year Cup career, Jamie McMurray has 7 Cup series wins but hasn’t won since 2013 at Talladega. Of those 7 career wins, however, he has trophies from the Daytona 500 and Brickyard 400, not a shabby trophy case. Not to mention the guy won in only his second career start in 2002 subbing for the injured Sterling Marlin.
The number of competitive rides for 2019 are dwindling fast as the silly season becomes a little more clear. The options for McMurray really consist of only the #41 and the #95 and of those two the #41 is the only truly competitive car out there. A one-off for Ganassi in the Daytona 500 may be the last hurrah McMurray needs.
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