Switch not working for Ganassi

Roush Racing president Geoff Smith said Sunday morning that behind-the-scene activities during the next seven days likely will determine whether Jamie McMurray replaces Kurt Busch in the No. 97 Ford next season or the two drivers stay put.

It's already agreed that McMurray will replace Busch in 2007, the same year Busch is set to become the driver of Penske Racing's No. 2 Dodge, which is being vacated by the retiring Rusty Wallace. But efforts are ongoing to accelerate the swap. it's going to happen, it'll happen this week," Smith said. "I think the probability is much more toward a transaction working than it is falling apart."

The key player at this point appears to be McMurray's current owner, Chip Ganassi, who has been reluctant to let McMurray leave one season earlier than planned unless he can sign a top-notch replacement.

"In order for it to work, there has to be a driver for Chip," Smith said. "All I can say is 10 days ago it wasn't going to work for Chip, and now it can work. I assume he's got somebody."

Ganassi said that's not so. "I don't know what [Smith] is thinking," Ganassi said. "I need a driver. Nothing's changed on my end." AJC.com

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