stewart haas co owner tony stewart during the running of news photo 1666635089

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According to a tweet put out by The Athletic‘s Jeff Gluck, Stewart-Haas Racing co-owner and three-time NASCAR Cup Series champion, Tony Stewart was originally scheduled to give the command to fire engines for Sunday’s Cup Series race at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

However, it was announced Friday that country singer Kip Moore would do it instead. So what’s up with that?

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Stewart has made headlines recently critical of NASCAR following recent penalties given to his team. On Oct. 2, SHR’s Kevin Harvick was fined $100,000 for failing post-race inspection at Talladega. Then a week later, the team’s driver and crew chief were fined for trying to manipulate the outcome of the Charlotte Roval race to help teammate Chase Briscoe advance in the playoffs.

In a recent interview with the Associated Press, Stewart expressed his displeasure with NASCAR saying: “I’m so mad at NASCAR right now. I’m not talking about it…If it weren’t for the fact that I’ve got appearances to make, I wouldn’t be at another NASCAR race for the rest of the year. Wouldn’t waste my time.”

After the penalties were announced, the three-time Cup Series champion even tweeted he’s looking for other ways to spend his time, looking for a hobby that is “not southeastern based” and that is “low drama and relaxing preferably.”

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While some on social media are having a field day with runaway NASCAR vs. Tony Stewart feud rumors, Stewart’s public relations said the change in the grand marshal plans was a matter of Stewart unable to jam 10 pounds of potatoes into a five-pound bag on a busy weekend.

According to a spokesperson for Stewart-Haas Racing when reached on Monday by Autoweek“It was merely a scheduling issue that we needed to address. Tony voluntarily stepped down from the grand marshal position so that he had the time to engage with partners associated with Stewart-Haas Racing that were onsite at Homestead.”

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