Bobby Hamilton Jr has been released from his NASCAR Busch Series ride, much to the surprise of most observers despite the fact that Hamilton Jr had already signed for PPI Motorsports in 2005.

One of the favourites to challenge for the 2004 Busch Series crown, tough talking and tough driving Hamilton Jr had become a favourite with many fans and epitomised the Team Marines sponsorship held by the #25 Rensi team.

However after several mid season engine failures and a couple of so-so performances from the driver, Hamilton Jr is only eighth in the current standings, an impossible 592 markers behind current leader Martin Truex Jr with eleven races remaining and team owners Sam and Ed Rensi has opted for a change as they try to regroup for 2005.

Jeff Green, who won the Busch Series title in 2000 with ppc Racing and current Team Marines crew-chief Harold Holly, has been drafted in as a replacement as the #25 team look for a new driver and crew chief for 2005. Holly will join Hamilton Jr at PPI.

Hamilton Jr, who has made scattered Nextel Cup Series starts in 2004 with independent outfit Phoenix Racing, now looks increasingly like making an appearance in a PPI run Nextel Cup car before the season is out.