Kahne talks the Chili Bowl; World of Outlaws 2018 plans

Kasey Kahne: “I plan on racing 20-30 races.”

With a new NASCAR ride, comes more dirt races. Recently, Kasey Kahne competed in the Chili Bowl Nationals. He finished 9th in B-Main #1, missing a transfer spot to the main event.

The Chili Bowl is a race Kasey Kahne missed in 2017 as well as 2015. Until this year, Kahne drove for Hendrick Motorsports, a deal which began in 2012.

Chili Bowl

“The Chili Bowl was great. It always is. It’s kind of an exciting week,” Kahne detailed during NASCAR media day. “It’s a fun event.”

“It feels like it keeps growing. You know, it’s a building, so how does it keep growing inside that building? When it’s always had tons of cars and people. but, to me, it just keeps growing.”

“It’s fun to see Lee Spencer, Bob Pockrass, Jeff Gluck — These guys that we see at the Cup track all the time, at the Chili Bowl as well. And them enjoying it too, not just there like, ‘Oh I gotta be here or something.’ But, actually seemed like they really enjoy it.”

“I feel like it’s a breath of fresh air because we got a couple months off and we want to get back in a race car. That’s the perfect spot, to start the year.”

Chili Bowl Nationals
Chili Bowl Nationals

WoO & Dirt Racing Plans

Kasey Kahne fields a two car team in the World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series. Daryn Pittman and Brad Sweet are the primary drivers. When Kahne joins, it becomes a 3 car team.

“I’ve always had the two World of Outlaw teams. I love that stuff. It’s that type of racing that I came from.” He latest said, “I can’t leave it behind.”

“I plan on racing 20-30 races. I’m going to do the first 5, in Florida. The #95 is priority for me. From there, I build my schedule, as I go.”

Kasey Kahne Racing lost a primary sponsor, Great Clips. A sponsor he lost on the NASCAR side at the end of 2017. However, team owner Kahne planned to field the team in 2018 with zero sponsors.

“I was committed to Daryn Pittman and told him that he had a two year deal with me.”

“We went into this year with zero sponsors for his car. I was running him regardless because I made that commitment to him.”

Ionomy dirt sprint car - Darryn Pittman
Ionomy dirt sprint car – Darryn Pittman

But, he won’t have to do that. A new sponsor has joined the dirt racing ranks. Daryn Pittman’s #9 will display the Ionomy logo for a bulk of the 2018 dirt sprint car season.

“To get Ionomy on his car now, for 37 races, is awesome. We’re excited, the car looks great. Hopefully, we can really build something, from here.”

Ionomy has two divisions of their company. The first is their digital currency, ION. The second is a mobile gaming division. They will soon release Offroad Heat a new dirt track game.

“The NAPA deal with Brad is unreal. They race all over the country, in a lot of places that NASCAR and NHRA doesn’t go to. So that helps a lot of their stores.”

2018 Kasey Kahne Race Car- Leavine Family Racing
2018 Kasey Kahne Race Car- Leavine Family Racing

On the NASCAR side, Kasey Kahne has a renewed excitement about his NASCAR career. Every time I hear him talk about this team, he’s showing a sense of fire.

“The last time I raced for a smaller team, it was Red Bull. I loved it there. It was maybe one of my favorite years, I’ve had in the cup series. The other [favorite] years would have to be with Ray Evernham.”

Kahne expressed that with the Red Bull team they were building throughout the season. Toward the end of the year, he felt they had progressed to being one of the faster cars on the track.

Kahne drove for the Red Bull Racing Team from the tail of the 2010 season through the 2011 racing season. That was a team that was fully funded and operated by the Red Bull beverage company. In seven of the last 8 races that season, the team finished inside the top 10. Five of the eight were top 10 runs.

“The Red Bull year was awesome. This year, it would be great if it could feel something like that.”

Kahne picked up a win in his second to last start with the Red Bull Racing Team. That win came at ISM Raceway on November 13, 2011. On December 8, 2011 the team suspended operations to focus on their F1 team. They never returned to the NASCAR tracks.

Kasey Kahne - Red Bull Racing Team
AVONDALE, AZ – NOVEMBER 13: Kasey Kahne, driver of the #4 Red Bull Toyota, celebrates with a burnout after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Kobalt Tools 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 13, 2011 in Avondale, Arizona. (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)

Related: Kahne feels he can bring a lot to Leavine Family Racing

Related: Kahne talks dirt racing plans


Kasey Kahne | Leavine Family Racing | Chili BowlNASCAR