HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. — While it wasn't quite moving day, both Matt Kenseth and Joey Logano officially got new NASCAR homes on Tuesday.
It's been known for months Kenseth was headed to Joe Gibbs Racing, but he wasn't able to talk about it until Tuesday, when he made an appearance at the organization's team headquarters with new teammates Kyle Busch and Denny Hamlin.
Kenseth will drive the No. 20 Toyota beginning next season, which will continue to be sponsored by Home Depot and Dollar General.
“This is a big day for us. We know in this sport you've got to have somebody who can really wheel it, you've got to have somebody that can make things go,” said JGR owner Joe Gibbs.
“We've had a great history because we've had great drivers, and we're so excited to have Kyle, Denny and now, Matt.”
Kenseth, the 2003 Cup champion and this season's Daytona 500 winner, has spent his Cup career with Roush Fenway Racing. He has 22 career Cup wins and 22 in the Nationwide series.
“JGR is an impressive organization with tremendous leadership and strong support from sponsors,” Kenseth said. “I'm very fortunate to have the opportunity to move from one great situation into another starting in 2013.
”I remain totally committed to this season and working with my current team toward a championship, and having this settled will only help my focus.“
Kenseth has already qualified for this season's Chase for the Cup, which begins next week at Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Ill.
Only hours later, Penske Racing formally announced the hiring of the current driver of JGR's No. 20, Joey Logano — a move that was first reported by the Observer and ThatsRacin.com on Wednesday.
Logano, 22, will drive the No. 22 Ford next season for Penske as a teammate to Brad Keselowski. Sam Hornish Jr. has been driving the car temporarily this season after former driver, A.J. Allmendiunger, was indefinitely suspended from NASCAR for failing a random drug test.
”I am very excited to join Penske Racing and begin the next phase of my career,“ Logano said in a statement. ”I am looking forward to the opportunity as it will be an honor to drive for Roger Penske and race for wins and championships.“
Now in his fourth full Cup season, Logano, has two wins, four poles, 16 top-five and 37 top-10 finishes in 136 starts. With one race remaining before the 12-driver field is set for the Chase, Logano still has a shot at one of two wild card berths.
JGR had hoped to retain Logano, but did not have a full-time Cup ride to offer him for the 2013 season.
”Joey Logano is a very talented driver who has already achieved a lot of success at a young age,“ said Tim Cindric, president of Penske Racing. ”Joey is a great fit for our organization and we look forward to building on his success as he takes his place behind the wheel of the No. 22.“
JGR drivers weren't the only ones pleased with Kenseth's move to the organization.
Driver Jeff Burton posted the following on his Twitter account after the announcement: ”JGR got themselves one hell of a race car driver. He will help take them to another level.“
”Matt is going to be the perfect fit,“ he said. ” ... I feel like he's a guy I can learn a lot from.“
MCT Information Services