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Sunday, November 17, 2013
Mark Martin's 2014 role undecided

By Brant James
ESPN.com

HOMESTEAD, Fla. -- Stewart-Haas Racing competition director Greg Zipadelli said that Mark Martin's 2014 role with the team "is not completely identified yet," but predicts the veteran will be a valuable addition after ostensibly running his last Sprint Cup for the foreseeable future race on Sunday.

Martin
Martin

Martin may consult or test, but beyond his technical experience, Zipadelli said, Martin could be invaluable to a lineup of vocal, strong-willed personalities comprised of owner Tony Stewart, Kurt Busch, Kevin Harvick and Danica Patrick.

"A guy with that kind of experience, he's been to a lot of different race teams, he's worked for a lot of different manufacturers," Zipadelli told ESPN.com. "He was that guy that was a hot-head at one time. I think he can help all our drivers and myself with dealing with a lot of those things and sort of steer the ship a little bit."

Martin said last week that he has no plans to race in any top-3 NASCAR series next season, including the Daytona 500. He entered the Sprint Cup season finale on Sunday at Homestead-Miami Speedway in the No. 14 Chevrolet, his 12th start replacing the injured Stewart.

Martin will test Stewart's car until the three-time series champion is cleared to return from multiple leg fractures sustained in a Sprint Car wreck in August. Martin said last week he was available for "whatever they ask me" and that he expected to attend SHR tests, but not necessarily drive.

Martin said he was not being hired as Patrick's driver coach -- and that she doesn't require one -- but the Cup rookie said in August she welcomed his assistance.

"She's driving her tail off, doing an amazing job in my opinion," Martin said. "But if we can feed her faster race cars, she will reach her full potential. Anything that would improve that. If we give her faster race cars, she's going to go a lot faster."