Menard happy to stay put

CONCORD, NC - MAY 23:  Paul Menard, driver of the #27 Menards/Serta Chevrolet, sits in his car during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on May 23, 2013 in Concord, North Carolina.  (Photo by Jerry Markland/Getty Images)

CONCORD, NC – MAY 23: Paul Menard, driver of the #27 Menards/Serta Chevrolet, sits in his car during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on May 23, 2013 in Concord, North Carolina. (Photo by Jerry Markland/Getty Images)

CONCORD, N.C.–Paul Menard confirmed Saturday at Charlotte he has signed a deal that will keep him at Richard Childress Racing for three more years.

Menard’s crew chief Richard “Slugger” Labbe re-signed with the organization last month. Through 11 races this season, Menard is tied with RCR teammate Kevin Harvick for 10th in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series standings.

“(Team owner) Richard (Childress) has put a lot of resources into getting better, and it’s showing,” Menard said. “It might not be as visible to you guys (the media), but being inside the company, it’s pretty visible. It’s exciting to be a part of it.”

SHORT STROKES

Danica Patrick and Trevor Bayne had engine issues in Saturday’s practice session and will start from the rear in Sunday’s Coke 600 after changing engines… Jeff Burton had a problem with a leaking oil cooler in Happy Hour but didn’t have to change the power plant… Kasey Kahne dominated Saturday’s practices, posting the top lap speed in both sessions and the fastest 10-lap average in Happy Hour.

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