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“It wouldn’t hurt my feelings if we didn’t have to go test. I’m not a big fan of that any way from a driver’s side. … It’s really important for us to do, obviously, getting ready for Daytona. But I enjoy the racing stuff obviously. That’s what I live, eat, breathe and sleep.”

Starting with Daytona, he’ll be back entrenched in the Sprint Cup soon enough. With the changes, he said it feels like he’s “somewhat starting over” after edging out Carl Edwards for the title by winning the last race at Homestead on Nov. 20.

He had decided before the late surge that he planned to replace crew chief Darian Grubb, and he went ahead with the change even after winning it all.

“That’s obviously something that’s going to be a learning curve for Steve and I to learn each other. I’m excited about having Zipadelli on board and I’m excited about Addington, too. I think he’ll be a good addition to the team,” Stewart said.

“And I’m sad that Darian has moved on but we just felt like we needed to make that change. We just weren’t having the kind of season that we were looking for but obviously something changed there those last 10 weeks and then we got going.”

Stewart said he only wished he had 30 hours in each day and 400 days in each year to savor it all.

“It hasn’t felt like much of an offseason. In all honesty, if that’s what it feels like every year because you win a championship, I’m all for having it,” he said. “It hasn’t been unpleasant by any means. I’m not miserable and wore out and tired. There’s some things would have liked to do this winter that I didn’t get a chance to do.”