Tony Stewart and Stewart-Haas Racing haven’t even had a chance to celebrate the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship in Las Vegas with the crew chief that helped them win the organization’s first title, but on Monday they were already hiring a new one to fill his shoes.
Steve Addington, who informed Penske Racing last week that he would not be back with Kurt Busch in 2012, was announced as the new crew chief for Stewart’s No. 14 Chevrolet team, a role that would be “effective immediately.”
“I know Steve well and I know how he goes about setting up a racecar,” Stewart said in a statement released by SHR. “My comfort level with him is already strong. He balances the technical part of our sport with the real-world experiences we get at the track, and that will allow for a smooth transition as we prepare to defend our title in 2012.” Addington was a crew chief at Joe Gibbs Racing prior to moving to Penske Racing in 2010.
Addington is the third crew chief Stewart has had during his 13 year Sprint Cup career.
“Tony and I are a lot alike and we’re able to push each other,” Addington said. “I saw how he worked when we were at Gibbs together and I’m not surprised at all at the success he’s created at Stewart-Haas Racing. He expects a lot and he knows a lot. His talent behind the wheel is obvious, but his ability to motivate and get everyone to believe that whatever goal they set is attainable is something every crew chief wants, and I plan to make the most of it.”