After 14 years, one Cup championship and 22 wins, Matt Kenseth will part ways with Roush Fenway Racing at the end of this year.
Team co-owner Jack Roush delivered the news to his Concord, N.C.-based organization on Tuesday morning. Ricky Stenhouse Jr., the defending NASCAR Nationwide Series champion, will be promoted as Kenseth's replacement next year.
"Ricky Stenhouse Jr. has more than proved his abilities on the racetrack," Jack Roush said in a release. "We feel that he is not only a key piece of our team's future, but a key piece of the future of the sport. Roush Fenway is an organization with a wonderful past and present, as well as an extremely promising future, and I can't think of a better candidate than Ricky to usher in the next era of success for the team.
"Of course, I'd like to thank Matt Kenseth for his many years of loyal service. Matt has been an integral part of this organization for well over a decade, and we are extremely appreciative of his accomplishments and contributions to the team, and will always consider him a part of the Roush Fenway family."
Matt Kenseth was not at the Tuesday morning announcement, but tweeted the following statement:
"I'm very thankful to Jack Roush for the opportunities he's given me over the past 14 years. Together we have enjoyed a lot of success.... And as a team we are committed as ever to the remainder of the 2012 season and chasing a 3rd sprint cup title for Jack and RFR. Although I have nothing to announce regarding 2013, I feel the timing of this announcement gives RFR ample time to get things lined up... Darien and Tony proved to us last year there is no such thing as a "lame duck" team or season. We will continue to go to work and race hard."
The 40-year-old native of Cambridge, Wisc., who beat out Dale Earnhardt Jr. for rookie of the year in 2000, leads the Sprint Cup point standings by 11 points over teammate Greg Biffle.