Kasey Kahne: “It will be nice to go and do stuff and not feel like you’re doing something wrong.”
Kasey Kahne will drive for Leavine Family Racing in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series in 2018. He’s now the primary and only driver for the single car team.
With the new team, the handcuffs have been lifted, so to speak. Kahne is expecting more dirt races on the schedule for the upcoming 2018 season.
This week, Kasey Kahne is excited to return to the Chili Bowl for 2018. It’s a race he missed in 2017.
“It will be nice to go and do stuff and not feel like you’re doing something wrong,” Kahne told Motorsport.com. “It’s a completely new season, new year, new feel. I think it will be nice when I get back in the Cup car, when I get back in a sprint car, whatever it might be. I’ll just be happy, enjoying that time. Working hard to win.”
NASCAR driver Kasey Kahne is also the owner of a dirt sprint team. Kahne fields two full-time drivers in the World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series. Brad Sweet, driver of the #49 sprint car finished second in driver standings. Daryn Pittman, driver of the #9 finished 4th. Two cars, inside the top 5.
As Kasey Kahne moves to the smaller NASCAR team, he feels it will allow him to run more dirt races. But, even still he will be conscious of his full-time NASCAR ride.
“I will find the right weekends and weekdays that I can go race so it’s not effecting what I do in the 95, but showing how much I love to race,” Kahne said.
“Definitely want to keep the No. 95 as my priority,” he concluded of his new NASCAR ride.
Previously, Kasey Kahne drove for Hendrick Motorsports on the NASCAR side of his racing career. He signed with them in 2012. Kahne hinted above that he felt restricted on what dirt races he could or should run.
Kyle Larson, another avid dirt racer has a similar situation at Chip Ganassi Racing. With Larson, the rules are more cut and dry. Larson is only allowed 25 races. On top of that, he can’t run any dirt races Thursday-Sunday on any given NASCAR weekend.
Kasey Kahne is viewing the move to Leavine Family Racing as a step in the right direction. Hendrick is certainly a powerhouse NASCAR team, fielding 4 cars. However, Kahne feels the giant operation has it’s downsides.
“It’s a tough balance,” Kahne said. “There’s a lot of people involved. There’s a lot of ideas involved. It’s just a different way to do it. I thought the first couple of years at Hendrick worked really well for me. We won some. I thought we could have easily won many more races if we had things go our way—but that’s part of racing.”
“Since then, man, it was a struggle—quite often. It was no longer good for any of us. So the changes have been nice. We’ll see how it works out for everybody.”
“I was so happy that we won the Brickyard last year with Hendrick because of the effort that all the guys put in. So that was neat to accomplish that.”
2018 Chili Bowl
The break is over for the die-hard racers. Indoor racing sets off the 2018 calendar year. Kasey Kahne is ready for the 2018 Chili Bowl Nationals.
“You have a break, and then Chili Bowl comes along and everyone is excited, whether you’re a fan going to watch or you’re a driver going to race or a mechanic or a team owner,” Kahne said. “It’s just the start of a whole new season. To me, it’s a perfect time of the year to have everybody that’s there really enjoy it.
“I’m glad I’m going back. It’s been two years. I can’t wait to get there on Monday, get some practice, see where we stack up and go from there.”
Kasey Kahne has run the Chili Bowl Nationals A Main seven times. His best finish came in 2002 where he finished 6th.
This week, Kasey Kahne will be piloting the #67 Take 5 Oil Change midget. His 2018 Chili Bowl Nationals ride is fielded by Kasey Kahne Racing and under the lead of Willie Kahne.