Troubles at SHR

Rumors abound of Stewart-Haas Racing considering selling charters. Owner Tony Stewart began the season by publicly calling out his team's performance. What is SHR in the post-Kevin Harvick era, and what should they do about it?

Rumors abound of Stewart-Haas Racing selling charters:

Stewart-Haas’s NASCAR future in focus amid charter sales chatter
The future of Stewart-Haas Racing in NASCAR’s top series is in focus with the sport embroiled in ongoing charter negotiations.

That, after owner Tony Stewart began the season by publicly calling out his team's performance:

Stewart puts SHR on notice that recent performance is ‘unacceptable’
Tony Stewart might be eager for a new NASCAR season but the Hall of Famer made it clear Tuesday subpar results for Stewart-Haas Racing will not be tolerated. “God, I hope so,” Stewart told SiriusXM…

The organization has been struggling for years, but until this year having Kevin Harvick has allowed the group to have the appearance of contending.

The diff4ence between the SHR cars
During the Martinsville broadcast, Parker Kilgerman relayed information he heard speaking to the Rodney Childers, the crew chief of the Stewart-Haas Racing #4 car: SHR’s 10, 14, and 41 cars all use the same setup for races, whereas the 4 uses a setup personalized to its driver, Kevin Harvick. They

When you look at the team without Harvick (for me, a top-5 driver all-time) in recent years, they are what they've been: a group of fringe playoff teams. These numbers are from non-super speedways, regular season races only:

Driver Season ASP AFP ARP Avg. PFAE
Kevin Harvick (4) 2020 9.35 5.96 7.20 8.788
Clint Bowyer (10), Cole Custer (14), Aric Almirola (41) 2020 14.13 15.20 14.49 1.855
Kevin Harvick (4) 2021 9.64 11.82 10.43 2.933
Chase Briscoe (10), Cole Custer (14), Aric Almirola (41) 2021 21.14 21.17 19.93 -1.201
Kevin Harvick (4) 2022 18.75 10.95 11.68 7.926
Aric Almirola (10), Cole Custer (14), Chase Briscoe (41) 2022 16.40 19.22 17.11 -1.379
Kevin Harvick (4) 2023 16.35 12.20 11.31 5.734
Aric Almirola (10), Ryan Preece (14), Chase Briscoe (41) 2023 22.93 21.02 19.58 -0.392

This has been going on a while. They were hit hard by the move to the NextGen. They've had plenty of time to identify talent in the shop and in the race car. It's possible they have the talent but indeed have them spread out too thin across four cars and (until this year, I think) only two winning drivers. Now they've got four good-for-their-price drivers but are miring them in mediocre equipment and high expectations. I predict another year of the same!

It's not clear what SHR is good at without Harvick. Pick a discipline – short tracks, intermediates, or road courses. Focus on it. Figure it out.

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