Joe Gibbs Racing announced Tuesday that Dave Rogers will be assuming the duties as crew chief for its No. 18 NASCAR Sprint Cup Toyota, starting with the November 8 race at Texas Motor Speedway. Steve Addington, who has served as crew chief for the No. 18 team the previous five seasons, will be reassigned to a position within JGR following this weekend's race at Talladega Superspeedway. The move follows evaluation by team management of necessary changes after Busch failed to make the Chase for Sprint Cup.
Rogers is currently in his fourth season as crew chief on the No. 20 Nationwide Series entry for JGR. He led the team to JGR's first Nationwide Series Owner's Championship in 2008, amassing nine victories, six poles, 16 top-five finishes and 26 top-10 finishes despite utilizing four different drivers over the course of the season. The team has captured another five wins thus far this season under Rogers' leadership. He first joined JGR in 1998 and spent six seasons from 1999 to 2004 working under Greg Zipadelli with the No. 20 team, including the team's 2002 Championship season.
When the No. 11 car driven by Jason Leffler was introduced in 2005 as JGR's third NASCAR Sprint Cup Series team, Rogers was tabbed as crew chief. Mike Ford would later step into that role midway through the 2005 season and Rogers moved back into the JGR engineering department. Prior to the 2006 season Rogers would move over to JGR's Nationwide Series program and has since guided the team to 20 victories over the past four seasons.
"We evaluate all of our teams on an ongoing basis and believe this is a change that will make the 18 team stronger as we prepare for next season," said J.D. Gibbs, president of JGR. "We think highly of Steve and the job he has done and we look forward to him remaining a part of the JGR family.
"Dave has proven himself a talented crew chief and we think he will work well with Kyle. We hope that by making the move following this weekend's race at Talladega they can use the final three weeks of this season to begin working on communication and setups for the 2010 season."