BROOKLYN, Mich. – It’s been a bumpy ride this season for Kasey Kahne but he arrived at Michigan International Speedway on a high note. Farmers Insurance announced it was extending its commitment as Kahne’s No. 5 Chevy’s primary sponsor through the 2017 Sprint Cup season.
“It’s really good news,” he said. “We’ve done a lot with them and really enjoyed working with them over the years.
“They’re such a big part of helping us race each weekend. I’m excited about that.”
He’ll be even more excited with a strong finish in Sunday’s Quicken Loans 400.
Kahne has just four top-10 finishes in the season’s first 14 races and has been 30th or worse as many times. He began this race weekend 21st in the Sprint Cup standings and sorely needs a win as the weeks dwindle toward the Chase.
The new contract with Farmers lasts two years longer than Kahne’s pact with Hendrick Motorsports. He said there’s been no discussion about his future with the team, but made it clear he’d like to stay.
“I like being at HMS,” Kahne said. “It’s a wonderful place.
“I get information from three of the best drivers in racing. I’ve enjoyed every bit of it.”
His teammates – Jeff Gordon, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Jimmie Johnson – all qualified in the first four rows for Sunday’s race.
Kahne will start 13th as he seeks his first win since Aug. 4, 2013 at Pocono.
“Where we are right now as a team, we just need to show up and put full weekends together,” he said. “We just need to step up.”