Richard Petty Motorsports names Trent Owens crew chief for Aric Almirola

Jason Smith

The nephew of Richard Petty has been named crew chief for Aric Almirola and the No. 43 team.

Richard Petty Motorsports has named Trent Owens crew chief for the No. 43 team and driver Aric Almirola for the 2014 Sprint Cup season.

Owens, 38, has long served as a crew chief in the Nationwide Series for Braun Racing and Turner Scott Motorsports working with a variety of drivers. His five Nationwide victories have all come with different drivers. This past season he was the crew chief for rookie Kyle Larson, who finished eighth overall and recorded four runner-up finishes.

"This is a great opportunity to join a Sprint Cup organization and a race team that can win," Owens said in a statement. "The No. 43 team has proven they can race up front. We just need to find a little more consistency to make the Chase. I believe we can put ourselves in contention for a Chase spot in 2014."

The nephew of team patriarch Richard Petty, Owens replaces Todd Parrott, who was released by the team in October after violating NASCAR's substance abuse policy. Despite the loss of his crew chief late in the year, Almirola finished a career-best 18th in points in what his second full season in Cup. His best finish of 2013 was a fifth at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

"He's a very talented crew chief who has accomplished a lot, but he's still very hungry to do a lot more," Almirola said. "Our team is the same. We're getting better, but we need more top-10s, top-fives and wins. I believe Trent can help us do that and he's a positive addition to the team."

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