Will the third time be the charm for Matt Kenseth?

Nick Bromberg
June 24, 2010

Earlier this week, Todd Parrott was replaced as Matt Kenseth's crew chief. Parrott, as you may remember, replaced Drew Blickensderfer (who replaced Robbie Reiser as Kenseth's crew chief after the 2008 season) after the Daytona 500.

Taking Parrott's spot is Jimmy Fennig, who has now been with four drivers at Roush Fenway Racing. (Kurt Busch, Jamie McMurray and David Ragan are the others)

Kenseth, who is seventh in the points standings, has been the top driver for Roush Fenway in what has been a subpar year to this point. Ford doesn't have a win yet in the Sprint Cup Series, and while Kenseth, Greg Biffle and Carl Edwards are in the top 12 right now, they haven't gotten there by being at the front of the pack consistently.

Kenseth was at the beginning of the year, racking up six top 10s in the first seven races, but has been downright mediocre since. In the last nine races, Kenseth has only two top 10s (and one of those was a 10th at the Coca-Cola 600). And while Kenseth's forte has never been road racing, his 30th-place finish at Sonoma was his worst of the season.

At the current rate, Kenseth was destined to be near the Chase bubble at Richmond, and if he had gotten in, he'd hardly be considered a contender for the title. And while Jack Roush has shown some restraint recently when it comes to pulling the trigger on crew chief changes, the performance of the No. 17 team was starting to slide.

Plus, it gives Fennig a chance to don the Crown Royal colors once again. Crown Royal has sponsored three cars during it's time at RFR, and Fennig has now been a crew chief for all three.