CHARLOTTE - Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing suffred through a disappointing season in 2011.
Neither Jamie McMurray or Juan Pablo Montoya won a race and both weren't anywhere close to competing for a berth in the Chase.
But don't take my word for the poor assessment of EGR's performance. Listen to what team owner Chip Ganassi had to say at Tuesday's session on the NASCAR Sprint Media Tour.
"Hopefully this is the last time I have to say we finished 21st and 27th in the points last year," Ganassi said. "... pathetic for a team with our ability and resources."
Ok Chip tell us how you really feel.
It is in fact refreshing to hear a team owner tell it like it is the way Ganassi did on Tuesday. There's no reason to sugar coat the fact that a team many predicted would be a factor in 2011 simply failed to live up to any expectations.
After McMurray won three races the previous year including the Daytona 500 and Brickyard 400, he appeared to be on an upward trend to carry that succes into 2011. Unfortunately he never came close to replicating that kind of success.
Ditto for Montoya who was trying to recapture the magic of 2009 when he did qualify for the playoffs. He too failed to succeed and went through a coupl eof crew chiefs as the team tried to right the ship.
Ganassi points to his team not making more changes as a reason why it's playing catch-up heading into the new campaign.
"The one thing about sports is that it's constantly changing," Ganassi said. "You have to change with it and you have to change fast. I like to think I can shift gears and change directions as fast as anybody, but we got a little bit behind the curve, in terms of performance, and it's because we didn't change with the sport."
So Montoya has another new crew chief in Chris Heroy, the organization made other management changes including bringing in long-respected Max Jones to oversee the day-to-day business operations and Ganassi is hoping to see better days ahead.
"Certainly after the year we had, we had to start over in a lot of areas," he said. "We made some changes in the team. We feel pretty good about them. Like so many other sports, racing's about momentum. We want to start out fast, and certainly success can breed success."
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