Team owner Tony Stewart has a contingency plan in place should Kurt Busch be unable to drive this season because of his legal troubles.

Stewart did not reveal specifics of his plan if Busch is ordered by a court to stay away from his ex-girlfriend and is punished by NASCAR. The Stewart-Haas Racing co-owner said he was surprised Busch's case has dragged to the start of the season.

Busch also complained about the lengthy hearings that saw him make four court appearances.

Busch's former girlfriend, Patricia Driscoll, filed a petition for a protection from abuse order in November, claiming that Busch assaulted her inside his motorhome at Dover International Speedway in September.

Busch has denied the assault allegations. He expected to drive the No. 41 in the season-opening Daytona 500.