Paul Menard: ‘I have a contract for next year’

Paul Menard said Friday he has a contract for the 2020 racing season, indicating he plans to return to the Wood Brothers Racing No. 21 Ford team.

Menard, 38, is in his second season with the Wood Brothers operation.

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“I have a good job, for sure,” Menard said after final Monster Energy Series practice at Kentucky Speedway. “I love the Wood Brothers. I love my race team. They are good people. I have a contract for next year. I guess it is getting to be that time of year when people start talking about things. I have a contract and I love my team. We just have to perform better, that is all.”

Menard is in his 13th full season in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. The Wisconsin native sits 20th in the standings heading into Saturday night’s Quaker State 400 (7:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN/NBC Sports App, PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio), with two top-10 finishes in the first 18 races.

Menard’s best finish this season was a sixth-place effort at Bristol Motor Speedway. He has led just one lap this season, accomplished last weekend at Daytona International Speedway.

“It is certainly not where we want to be,” said Menard, who sits outside the provisional postseason field of 16. “I feel like we have definitely shown some speed in the races, it is just a matter of putting together the entire race, something we have struggled to do. It starts on Friday, or qualifying day.”