The choice was influenced by the fact that Kansas is currently being repaved, which will mean that all Cup drivers get additional testing time on the Thursday ahead of the race weekend, which will help Patrick get more experience in the Cup car.
"That extra day of testing will be huge for her. With the amount of 1.5-mile ovals on the schedule, it made sense to have her compete at Kansas to better prepare her for 2013," said Stewart/Haas Racing's competition director Greg Zipadelli, who also acts as Patrick's crew chief in the Cup series.
“I've always liked racing at Kansas Speedway,” said Patrick. “I think the extra day of testing will be very beneficial, not only to prepare for the race weekend, but to learn for the rest of 2012 and looking ahead to 2013 with Stewart-Haas Racing. The more track time I can get, the better
Max Gresham exits Joe Denette Motorsports
Driver NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Max Gresham is to leave the Joe Denette Motorsports team, after just eight outings together in the #24 truck yielded disappointing results and only 20th place in the championship standings.
"I know everyone expected to do better than that," said Gresham, the 2011 K&N Pro Series East champion. "Everybody did their best this year. Unfortunately, we just didn't have the results to show for it."
"Obviously, we hate to see Max go," said team owner Joe Denette, praising Gresham's "natural talent and friendly personality" but adding: "Unfortunately, Joe Denette Motorsports was not the right fit for him. We wish Max the best of luck in the future."
Ron Hornaday Jr. will continue to drive the team's #9 Chevrolet entry.