Friday, August 23, 2013

Childers To SHR With Harvick In 2014

Michael Waltrip Racing crew chief Rodney Childers will join Stewart-Haas Racing next season, working with Kevin Harvick and the new No. 4 Budweiser Chevrolet team.

"Going to SHR and working with Harvick is an opportunity that not many people will ever get," explained Childers today. "I was afraid that if I didn't take it, I would regret it the rest of my life.

Childers has been with MWR for five seasons, most recently serving as crew chief of the No. 55 Aaron’s Toyota with drivers Mark Martin, Brian Vickers and Michael Waltrip. He said the decision to leave the team “very, very hard and emotional,” adding, “I ended up making the decision a couple days ago.”

He informed the team today, saying, “I was a mess trying to tell them. This team is the best group of guys that I have ever been around. After being here for five years, it's hard to walk away."

Childers said his longtime friendship with Vickers made the decision especially difficult, after Vickers was named full-time driver of the No. 55 Toyota beginning in 2014.

"The part with Brian is the hardest part even though I didn't get to tell him face-to-face," he said. "We had everything planned out to where we could talk last night, and then it got to him before I got to talk to him. It's hard on both of us. We have known each other for a long time. I think after a while it will blow over and hopefully, we'll remain friends like we've always been our whole lives.

“All in all, we’ll do the best we can, move forward with everything and do the best job we can for the rest of the year (or however many races they allow me to do this),” said Childers. “They’ve been pretty good about it so far.”

MWR could elect to release Childers early, replacing him with whoever will work with Vickers next season. Childers has three Sprint Cup victories with MWR; two with David Reutimann in 2009 and 2010 and a third with Vickers earlier this season at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.


  1. As a career long Harvick fan, I am excited to see them get hire someone who has proven he can put fast, winning race cars on the track week after week, and with a variety of drivers. I am excited about next season for the 4 car!

  2. Anonymous4:17 PM

    Really had to be a no-brainer. Let see here...Waltrip or Stewart?? Vickers or Harvick?? Aarons or Budweiser?? Very easy decision!!