It seems that amid all the talk about the free agent drivers this year, there is one who’s getting lost in the shuffle. We seem to get weekly updates on Carl Edwards’ status, but there isn’t much chatter about Mark Martin. Scene Daily’s Kenny Bruce had a piece up on Thursday about Martin’s future, and it’s the first I’ve seen in a while. No new information was revealed to Bruce, and Martin made it clear that he’s going to wait for an opportunity to come to him. I’m curious though, with all the Martin fans out there, where do you want to see him next year? Are you hoping he finds another full time Cup ride, or do you think it’s time he starts to scale back?
Since it seems most teams who are in the market for a new driver are waiting on Carl Edwards and Clint Bowyer to make their moves, there really hasn’t been much in the way of rumors about Martin. At this point, if he were to remain in the Cup Series, the most obvious move may be to Red Bull Racing. Martin would reunite with former boss Jay Frye, and he could either be in line for a full time deal until Cole Whitt is ready or possibly a shared ride with the youngster, similar to his deal a few years ago with Aric Almirola. But for now, this move is more speculation than anything else.
Another possible option could be a full or part time schedule running in the Truck and Nationwide Series. Martin is running a few races for Turner Motorsports (he won with them at Las Vegas) this season and you’ve got to believe they’d be an option for 2012. Something tells me they wouldn’t have too much trouble finding a few sponsors willing to back him. It’s important to note though, that even if Martin does secure a full or part time Cup ride, a part time schedule with Turner may happen anyway.
Outside of Red Bull and Turner, I’m not sure what else will be available to Martin. The 52 year old isn’t getting any younger, and the theoretical options we’ve mentioned for guys like Edwards won’t necessarily be options for Martin.
So Martin fans, where would you like to see him next year? Red Bull? Turner? Full time? Part time?