Ray Evernham takes competition role with Hendrick Motorsports, leaves ESPN

Todd Warshaw

Ray Evernham has rejoined Hendrick Motorsports, but says he has no interest in being a crew chief again.

Ray Evernham has left his role as a NASCAR analyst for ESPN to take a management position within Hendrick Motorsports.

The crew chief who guided Jeff Gordon to three Cup championships told SiriusXM NASCAR his new position at Hendrick entails him being involved with the competition department.

"I'll be working with everybody at Hendrick Motorsports as part of the management team,'' Evernham told "Sirius Speedway" hosts Dave Moody and Angie Skinner Tuesday. "I've met with crew chiefs and I think I've got a good perspective as they face different challenges."

Evernham has served as a consultant for Hendrick Companies -- Rick Hendrick's automotive company not associated with his NASCAR operation -- since 2011. In his new role Evernham says he will attend approximately 15 races, the same number he would have with ESPN.

While other analysts, both with ESPN as well as at FOX and TNT, have direct relationships with NASCAR teams, Evernham felt it was in his best interest to end his association with ESPN.

"I've been working with Hendrick Companies for the last few years but I didn't have an involvement in the motorsports stuff," Evernham said. "But now that I'm not doing the ESPN thing this will allow me to be involved in some of the management and some of the things that they're doing at (Hendrick) Motorsports.

"And the best way to avoid a conflict of interest is to choose one or the other. I'm excited about being able to go and being involved in the management team on the motorsports side. It's good for me. ...The best thing for me to do is to focus on my job (at Hendrick) and not lose my credibility with my fans and friends."

Although he will sit atop the pit box on race weekends, one thing Evernham will not do at Hendrick is resume being a crew chief in any capacity.

There was some speculation that with departure of Steve Letarte at the end of the year, Evernham could take over as the crew chief for Dale Earnhardt Jr., or reunite with Gordon, who he won 47 races and three championships with from 1993-99. Evernham quickly dismissed the notion.

"That's safe to say, I've said that time and time again" Evernham said, when asked about the possibility of working with Earnhardt or Gordon. "I'll be working with everybody.

"I will be going to meetings and be involved in competition things that I've not been involved with in the past three years or so."

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