Leaving an Option for Dodge

Dodge

Gilles: "As for next year, it's really all options on the table. I hate to say it, but everything from completely getting out to doing it bigger than ever."

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Although they have yet to secure drivers and teams for the 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, Dodge and SRT Motorsports unveiled their new Charger at Las Vegas Motor Speedway last weekend.

Ralph Gilles - President and CEO, SRT Brand and Motorsports - joined Eli Gold on Motor Racing Network’s NASCAR Live on Tuesday night to talk about Dodge's future in the sport after Penske Racing, the manufacturer's flagship team, announced it would be switching to Ford next year.

"Honestly, the thing with Penske really caught us off-guard," Gilles said. "We'd been cooperating quite well, but he was really looking for a long, long-term deal; a five-year deal and we just weren't in the position to do that. I think he had something on the table with Ford and he went with it."

Even though the new car is in place for 2013, one option on the table for Dodge is to leave the sport if it can't find a team to align with.

"As for next year, it's really all options on the table," Gilles said. "I hate to say it, but everything from completely getting out to doing it bigger than ever."

The good news, according to Gilles, is that there's interest in Dodge throughout the Sprint Cup Series garage.

"A lot of teams have called us, a lot of individuals have called us," Gilles said. "So it looks like there are a lot of people that want to see Dodge in racing."

But when it comes down to selecting a team, one thing remains important.

"I don't want to go there and just do laps. We really want to be competitive," Gilles said. "There are not as many top houses left. We would have to kind of rebuild one or work with one. The toughest thing is to do this in less than a year, really. It's a big challenge."

Gilles said that Dodge is going continue to support Penske Racing though the 2012 season.

"I'm going to do everything I can to help Roger get his first Sprint Cup and that's how he's approaching it, too."

Related Topics:

NASCAR Sprint Cup

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