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NASCAR Cup: Kasey Kahne out at Hendrick Motorsports

Kasey Kahne celebrates winning the Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on July 23, 2017 (photo courtesy of Getty Images for NASCAR).

Kasey Kahne celebrates winning the Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on July 23, 2017 (photo courtesy of Getty Images for NASCAR).

By AMANDA VINCENT

The 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season will be the last for Kasey Kahne at Hendrick Motorsports, the race team announced Monday morning, although one year remained on his contract with the team.

“Kasey has worked extremely hard,” Hendrick Motorsports owner Rick Hendrick said. “He’s a tremendous teammate and person, and he has been totally dedicated to our program since day one. I’ve always believed that he’s a special talent, and I know he will thrive in the right situation. We will do everything we can to finish the season as strong as we can.”

Kahne will finish out the current season as driver of the No. 5 HMS Chevrolet.

Kahne joined the No. 5 team at the start of the 2012 season, upon the departure of Mark Martin when Martin opted to return to part-time racing for Michael Waltrip Racing. Kahne actually signed with Hendrick in 2010 and awaited Martin’s departure with a temporary ride with the now-defunct Red Bull Racing.

Kahne has 18-career points-paying Cup Series wins, with sixth of them coming since joining HMS. His most recent win came last month in the Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. It was his first win since 2014.

“I’d like to thank Rick and everyone at Hendrick Motorsports for their hard work and dedication, along with providing me a great opportunity and success over the last six years,” Kahne said. “We won six races together, and I’m coming off of one of the biggest wins of my career at the Brickyard, which has given the 5 team a lot of momentum heading into the playoffs. We still have a lot of racing left in 2017 and finishing strong is our top priority. I look forward to what the next chapter in my career holds.”

Prior to his stint at Red Horse Racing, Kahne drove for Evernham Motorsports and, then, Richard Petty Motorsports when the two teams merged. He won once with the Evernham-turned-Petty team and once with Red Bull.

Kahne has made 490-career Cup starts, so far, resulting in 92 top-fives and 173 top-10 finishes, including his 18 wins.

HMS plans to continue fielding four Cup Series entries next year, with two of its cars having new faces behind the wheel, full-time, next year. Alex Bowman will replace the retiring Dale Earnhardt Jr. in the No. 88. Hendrick isn’t yet ready to announce Kahne’s replacement in the No. 5.

Follow Auto Racing Daily on Twitter @AutoRacingDaily or like Auto Racing Daily on Facebook (Facebook.com/autorcngdaily). Amanda’s also on Twitter @NASCARexaminer and has a fan/like page on Facebook (Facebook.com/nascarexaminer)

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Posted by on August 7, 2017. Filed under Breaking News,Featured,NASCAR. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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