Reaffirming comments made to FOXSports.com in May, Furniture Row Racing general manager Joe Garone says the single-car organization is interested in adding a second Sprint Cup Series team.
It’s just probably not going to happen next year, however.
Furniture Row currently fields only the No. 78 Chevrolet of driver Martin Truex Jr., who is second in points and has compiled a staggering 14 top-10 finishes, including a win at Pocono, in the season’s first 15 races.
Speaking exclusively with FOXSports.com on Saturday at Sonoma Raceway, Garone indicated there’s no rush to add a second team and that the earliest the Denver, Colorado-based organization would likely expand is 2017.
“It’s still not a priority for us,” Garone said. “It kind of falls in getting sponsorship. So while we’re working on getting additional sponsorship for the 78 car, we’re also working on a second team, but it’s really, in priorities, it’s funding for the 78, support funding for the 78 and then a second program. So it’s not a huge priority right now, especially with the way the 78 has performed this year, and then being in the Chase, we want to keep 100 percent focused on what’s ahead of us here. We don’t have to have a second team. I think long-term we certainly do, but it’s got to come in the right steps.”
Garone revealed that the addition of a second team could even be three years away.
“To add a second team looking at right now, it would be a ’17 or an ’18 deal, not a ’16 deal, absolutely,” he said. “It all depends on funding. If a Wells Fargo truck pulled up and dropped enough money, you could probably do it because you could overpower some of the challenges with money, with resources. But that isn’t going to happen, so we’ve got to just lay it out ahead at least a year.”
As for re-signing Truex, who is in the second-year of a two-year contract with the organization, Garone corroborated his driver’s comments from earlier this month that he expects to come to terms with the team on a new deal.
“We’re starting to get a little bit serious about it,” Garone said. “We both have certainly said to each other, ‘We want to race together and continue racing,’ but we haven’t actually sat down and said, ‘What’s it look like?’ There’s a timeline for that, and everything’s going to be fine. We’ll just take it as it comes. Again, we’re trying to keep our focus on what we’re doing week to week.”
VIDEO: Martin Truex Jr. wins earlier this season at Pocono Raceway