There goes another one.
In recent seasons, NASCAR has dealt with the departure of numerous star drivers, everyone from Jeff Gordon to Danica Patrick and Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Thursday, another longtime favorite announced he would be joining them.
Kasey Kahne, who has competed full-time in the Cup Series since 2004, released a statement confirming his decision.
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“I’ve thought about this decision for many months, if not longer,” Kahne said in his statement. “It’s time for me to step away from racing in NASCAR full-time. I appreciate everything LFR (Leavine Family Racing) has done for me this season and offering me the opportunity to race in 2019.”
Kahne joined LFR this offseason after leaving Hendrick Motorsports, where he was a longtime teammate of Earnhardt, Gordon and Jimmie Johnson. His career-best finish came in 2012, when he finished fourth overall in the points standings in his first season with Hendrick. He has 18 Cup Series victories in his career, with the most recent one coming last season at Indianapolis.
Kahne said in his statement that the lengthy NASCAR schedule has taken its toll on him, and that he would like to spend more time with his son, Tanner.
“The highs didn’t outweigh the lows and the grueling schedule takes a toll on your quality of life,” Kahne said. “I need to spend more time doing the things I enjoy and love and that’s spending time with Tanner and my sprint car teams.”
Kahne is 28th in the points standings, and his best finish this year was fourth at Daytona in July.