NASCAR »

Grubb joins JGR as Hamlin's crew chief

Darian Grubb has signed up as Denny Hamlin's new crew chief in 2012, after Mike Ford was ousted from the role by Joe Gibbs Racing earlier in the week.
Darian Grubb has secured a new crew chief role with another top organisation, with the announcement that he will be taking over the running of the #11 team at Joe Gibbs Racing, working with driver Denny Hamlin.

“I'm thrilled to join Joe Gibbs Racing,” said Grubb, adding: “The chance to work with Denny is something I'm excited about."

Grubb was fired by his former boss, team owner/driver Tony Stewart, in the middle of the Chase - before then going on to help steer Stewart to the 2011 Sprint Cup championship. Stewart has since announced that Steve Addington - Kurt Busch's former crew chief on the #22 - will be in charge of Stewart's #14 team for the defence of their title in 2012.

For Grubb, it will be his first major role outside of the Hendrick Motorsports family of teams. Rick Hendrick had said that he had been keen to have Grubb return to the fold in an engineering or management capacity, but that he had no crew chief slots available for him. Grubb has clearly decided that he's not done with the cut and thrust of helming a car crew just yet.

"Obviously, he has proven the ability to guide a team to a championship," said his new boss, team owner Joe Gibbs. "We are excited to have him working with Denny toward achieving that goal here at Joe Gibbs Racing."

Grubb, 36, clearly felt that he had landed on his feet with his new team. "When you sit down with Joe and JD Gibbs you can't help but be excited about this opportunity and the team aspects of JGR," he said. "There is no question about the level of support you get here and I'm looking forward to working with everyone across the entire organization."

JGR had announced on Tuesday that Hamlin's former crew chief, Mike Ford, was being released by the team after a disappointing and lacklustre season for the driver. Despite making the Chase play-offs, Hamlin was never a factor in the title battle as he was in 2010 when he led Jimmie Johnson in the points going into the final race of the season. This year by contrast Hamlin was able to claim only one race win, at Michigan in the summer.

The decision to shake things up in the #11 camp and release Ford earlier in the week had not been a surprise, although nor had it been a foregone conclusion. "I'm kind of relieved," Ford was quoted as saying by the Associated Press wire service. "It had been dragging on for so long, I'm actually relieved there's finally a resolution."

"Everyone at Joe Gibbs Racing appreciates what Mike has done for our organization over the past six seasons as crew chief with our No. 11 team," Gibbs himself said in a press release on Tuesday. "We've decided it was best to make a change with the team now to allow Mike the opportunity to pursue other opportunities."

Ford suggested that his “no compromise” attitude to his role had contributed to his exit from JGR. “I can be very brash," he admitted. "You step on toes along the way. Some of it is very deliberate. It's not popular throughout a shop where you have to have harmony. It basically comes down to I didn't get along well with certain individuals."




Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Clint Bowyer, NASCAR Sprint Cup driver. [Picture credit: Geoff Burke, Getty Images for NASCAR]
Todd Berrier, pit crew chief for the #31 car driven by Jeff Burton. November 2010. [Picture credit: Rusty Jarrett/Getty Images for NASCAR]
Jeff Burton - Richard Childress Racing [Pic credit: Sam Greenwood/Getty for NASCAR]
Denny Hamlin - Joe Gibbs Racing [Pic credit: Sam Greenwood/Getty for NASCAR]
Denny Hamlin celebrates winning the Heluva Good Sour Cream Dips 400 at Michigan International Speedway, his first victory of 2011. [Picture Credit: Geoff Burke/Getty Images for NASCAR]
The victorious Stewart-Haas Racing team celebrate winning the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup. (Photo Credit: Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)
Stewart-Haas Racing crew chief Darian Grubb monitoring the fuel-injection tests at Texas in November. [Picture credit: Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images for NASCAR]
Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet, leads a pack of cars during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on May 24, 2015 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo Credit: Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images)
Matt Kenseth, driver of the #20 DeWalt Toyota, and Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell Pennzoil Ford, lead the field through the green flag to start the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on May 24, 2015 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo Credit: Matt Sullivan/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Visser Precision Chevrolet, Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser/Jimmy John`s Chevrolet, and Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Office Toyota, lead the field into turn one during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on May 24, 2015 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo Credit: Rainier Ehrhardt/Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser/Jimmy John’s Chevrolet SS, finished in ninth place, Sunday, May 24, 2015, in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, North Carolina. (Photo by Garry Eller/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Ryan Newman, driver of the #31 Quicken Loans Chevrolet SS, stops in his pit on his way to a sixth place finish, Sunday, May 24, 2015, in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, North Carolina. (Photo by Andrew Coppley/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Martin Truex, Jr, driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Visser Precision Chevrolet SS, stops in his pit on his way to a fifth place finish, Sunday, May 24, 2015, in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, North Carolina. (Photo by Andrew Coppley/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Dale Earnhardt, Jr., driver of the #88 Nationwide Chevrolet SS, finished in third place, Sunday, May 24, 2015, in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, North Carolina. (Photo by Alan Marler/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Austin Dillon, driver of the #33 Rheem Chevrolet, leads a pack of cars during the NASCAR XFINITY Series Hisense 300 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on May 23, 2015 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo Credit: Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images)
Austin Dillon, driver of the #33 Rheem Chevrolet, and Darrell Wallace Jr., driver of the #6 Cheez-It Ford, lead the field past the green flag to start the NASCAR XFINITY Series Hisense 300 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on May 23, 2015 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo Credit: Sarah Crabill/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Darrell Wallace Jr., driver of the #6 Cheez-It Ford, pits during the NASCAR XFINITY Series Hisense 300 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on May 23, 2015 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo Credit: Sarah Crabill/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell Pennzoil Ford, practices for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on May 23, 2015 in Charlotte, North Carolina. CPT Travis L. Patriquin, US Army, is honored on the car as part of the 600 Miles of Remembrance program.  (Photo Credit: Jeff Zelevansky/NASCAR via Getty Images)

Start the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.




© 1999 - 2015 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.