The 2000 season was something of a roller coaster for Jack Roush as he saw Mark Martin suffer his worst year for a long time and the departure of Chad Little and Kevin Lepage, who promised so much but failed to deliver. On the flip side of the coin Matt Kenseth emerged as the Reybestos Rookie of the Year in what has to be the most competitive rookie season on record and Jeff Burton enjoy a highly successful year in which he won four races and recorded 22 top ten finishes.

However the Winston Cup title still eludes Roush and the 2001 season will be vital if the Winston Cup's biggest outfit is to continue to run at the very front of the Winston Cup field and score that long awaited Championship victory.

February's Daytona 500 will mark the first time in four years that Roush Racing will have less than five Ford's on the starting grid after Lepage's #16 outfit ceased operations through lack of competitive funding. Martin will also be undertaking his first ever Winston Cup race without the colours of Valvoline on the side of his #6 machine while new recruit Kurt Busch (in the ex-Little #97 machine) may not have a main sponsor at all in the wake of John Deere's announcement that they would not be returning to the team. Jeff Burton will be entering his first full year with CITGO SUPERGUARD and not Exide Batteries leaving the #17 DeWalt Tools ford Taurus of Kenseth as the only member of the squad bearing any visual resemblance to that of just one year ago.

However despite the off-tack shuffling that has also included all four remaining teams being relocated to a state-of-the-art workshop in Concord, North Carolina, the hungry quartet will be well fired up for the season opener next year.

Martin and Burton will both be targeting the Winston Cup title as their main goal next year with the former hoping to do with Pfizer/Viagra what he couldn't do with Valvoline and the latter going for a second consecutive Daytona success after winning July's Pepsi 400. Kenseth will be hoping to follow in the footsteps of 1999 Reybestos Rookie of the Year Tony Stewart who enjoyed the most successful sophomore season on record with six wins while Busch, who impressed greatly in his seven starts for the team this year, will be amongst the favourites to succeed his team-mate in the chase for RotY honours.

The move under one roof also has its' advantages as far as set-up data is concerned and with Roush built engines amongst the very best in the entire Winston Cup, the re-profiled squad could be about to launch one of the most potent Championship challenges in recent years.