By: Toby Christie – follow on twitter @toby_christie
Touchet GMS Racing. After months of rumors and speculation that the team, which currently fields teams in the Camping World Truck Series and Xfinity Series, would move to cup in 2018, the organization played the ultimate trick on the media Thursday.
The talk has been very loud, even before Kasey Kahne was released from Hendrick Motorsports, that Kahne would drive a car for the team in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. Fuel was added to the fire when it was announced earlier this week that Kahne was released from his HMS contract a year early, and that William Byron would be driving the No. 5 car next season.
During the teleconference introducing Byron as his new driver, Hendrick admitted that he would still pay Kahne his full driver salary for 2018 and that he was feverishly working on landing Kahne another ride for a team that would have a technical alliance with HMS.
“I have an obligation to Kasey so I’m paying two drivers next year and I’m also trying to help Kasey in another situation that we could be involved with helping another team,” Hendrick said Wednesday.
It looked like the GMS Racing move was complete. Then Wednesday night, GMS Racing posted the following Tweet, which had us all on the edge of our seats at 10am ET:
“Big announcement tomorrow morning at 10 AM ET. Make sure to stay tuned for more on our social handles.”
Everyone waited in suspense, expecting to read the news that we all have felt was coming for quite some time — Kahne to GMS Racing. But instead the team showed off its throwback paint scheme, which honors Michael Waltrip, for the upcoming Xfinity Series race at Darlington. Not sure if that is truly considered a “big announcement” but well played GMS Racing, well played.