This article appears in the Feb. 22 issue of ESPN The Magazine.
Ah, the effects of success: money, fame and all those annoying questions
about encores. Since shocking the paddock, and himself, by placing two cars
in the Top 10, second-year team owner Tony Stewart is already sick of "the
question that won't go away." Forgive us, Smoke, but we have to ask too:
When are you expanding your team?
"We're definitely looking at it. It made no sense to even think about it for
2010, but we talk about the benefits and problems of doing it all the time.
There's a lot of both."
When Kevin Harvick tried to wriggle out of his final year with RCR, it was
widely believed he was fixing to join his buddy in Stewart-Haas Racing's
projected third car. Now Kasey Kahne, another old friend, will also be
available at the end of 2010. So three cars for SHR? "I have said all along
that I refuse to bite off more than I can chew," Stewart says flatly. Then
he pats his belly. "Clearly, though, I can chew a lot."