With new crew chief in place, Stewart eyes another successful season

CONCORD, N.C. (release) -- Members of the media got their first look at the new driver/crew chief combination of Tony Stewart and Steve Addington Monday and the pair already look like they’ve been working together for years.

But still, the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Stewart admits they have a lot to learn about each other.

“We’re just a bunch of low-key, down to Earth racers, hardcore racers that just want to race. That is the attitude Steve has,” Stewart said. “I’m not putting any pressure on him (Addington). I’m looking forward to going out and racing with him.

“We both know there is going to be a period of learning each other and just little things. Daytona, that 10 day period is not going to get it done. It is going to take getting through Phoenix and Vegas and some of those races to really get in tune with each other,” Stewart added.

If Addington was concerned about any potential learning curve, he certainly didn’t show it.

“One guy isn’t going to make a big difference,” said Addington, who moved to Stewart-Haas Racing from Penske Racing. “I’ve gotta keep the communication with him going as far as the race car is concerned. Having that supporting cast, the people that are around you and throughout the organization, that is what makes you successful.”

Another new piece of the puzzle at Stewart-Haas Racing is Greg Zipadelli, Stewart’s former crew chief at Joe Gibbs Racing. Zipadelli joins Stewart-Haas Racing as the organizations new competition director and will also serve as Patrick’s crew chief during her 10-race venture into Sprint Cup.

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