Less than one year after winning his first two races as crew chief for Matt Kenseth, Drew Blickensderfer will no longer guide the #17 Roush Fenway Racing team, the organisation announced Wednesday.

Veteran crew chief Todd Parrott will replace Blickensderfer atop the pit box. Blickensderfer has been reassigned to the Roush Fenway research and development department. The change is effective immediately.

Blickensderfer wasn't the only crew chief on the move Wednesday. Earlier in the day, a spokesman for Kevin Harvick Inc. confirmed Dave Fuge, crew chief for defending Camping World Truck Series champion Ron Hornaday, is no longer with the team. No replacement was named.

Parrott, 46, who has been a Cup crew chief since 1995 and has won 28 races, won a Cup title with Dale Jarrett in 1999. He most recently was with Yates Racing as crew chief for Bobby Labonte, but that relationship didn't last the full 2009 season.

Blickensderfer had replaced Chip Bolin as crew chief for Kenseth following the 2008 season. Kenseth won last year's Daytona 500 and the Auto Club 500 the following week but struggled the rest of the season and failed to make the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup for the first time in his career.

Kenseth, the 2003 Cup champion, had worked with longtime crew chief Robbie Reiser until 2008, when Reiser became Roush's director of competition.

Kenseth finished eighth in the season-opening Daytona 500.

Fuge, a former co-owner and crew chief at Xpress Motorsports, had replaced Rick Ren, who became the competition director at Kyle Busch Motorsports. Ren had guided Hornaday to the series title in two of the past three years.

Hornaday finished 27th in the season-opening race last Saturday at Daytona when he was collected in an accident where he had contact with Ricky Carmichael.

by Sporting News



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