CUP: Andretti Replacing Conway For Daytona 500

John Andretti will compete in the Daytona 500 for Front Row Motorsports as rookie Kevin Conway will not be eligible for the event, the team has confirmed.

Andretti will drive the No. 34 car with sponsorship from Window World Cares, Window World’s charitable foundation, which raises money for St Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Andretti drove the No. 34 all last season. The team is locked into the 500 after finishing 35th in owner points last season.

Travis Kvapil will drive the team’s No. 37 car with sponsorship from Conway sponsor Extenze. Robert Richardson Jr. will drive the No. 38 with sponsorship from Mahindra. Starting with the Feb. 21 race at Auto Club Speedway in California, Conway (who is eligible for all tracks 2 miles and shorter) will drive the No. 37 and Kvapil will drive the No. 34. David Gilliland will drive all but two of the remaining events in the No. 38.

Team owner Bob Jenkins said in mid-January he was hoping to get both the No. 37 and No. 38 cars guaranteed starting spots. There are two spots from the 2009 owners points not allocated for 2010, and as a Ford team, Jenkins is the most likely to get them.

Neither Max Jones nor Doug Yates, the former owners of Yates Racing, are part of the ownership group of Richard Petty Motorsports, which merged with Yates, so there is a possibility a deal could be done for Paul Menard’s No. 98 points from last year (with Menard getting locked in with the No. 44 RPM points from last year). Another deal could be done with Hall of Fame Racing for points from the No. 96 car, which was operated by Yates Racing last year. Hall of Fame currently does not have sponsors to race this season.

NASCAR typically does not allow the outright sale of points but as long as a member of the previous ownership group is part of the current team, it will allow the transfer of points during the off-season.

NASCAR already has approved the transfer of the No. 26 Roush Fenway Racing points from last year to Latitude 43 Motorsports, a new team. Richard Childress Racing is forming an alliance with Furniture Row Racing that will move the No. 07 points to the No. 78 car and Regan Smith. • Uneventful offseason is just fine with Chip Ganassi