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Racin’ News: Childress, Shepherd Enter Partnership

Info Manager | , RacinToday.com Tuesday, August 31 2010

Morgan Shepherd has a new deal. (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)

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In Racin’ News today:

Richard Childress Racing and Morgan Shepherd’s Racing for Jesus have formed Shepherd Racing Ventures, a partnership to run the No. 21 for the remainder of the 2010 NASCAR Nationwide Series season.

Clint Bowyer will drive RCR’s No. 21 Zaxby’s Chevrolet at Atlanta Motor Speedway (Sept. 4), Richmond International Raceway (Sept. 10), Charlotte Motor Speedway (Oct. 15) and Texas Motor Speedway (Nov. 6). Shepherd will drive the No. 21 Shepherd Racing Ventures Chevrolet in the seven other races remaining.

“Morgan and I have been friends for a long time and he is a direct link back to the days when we raced together in the ’60s, ’70s and 80s,” said Richard Childress, president and CEO of Richard Childress Racing. “He’s been a great representative of NASCAR for all that time so I’m honored to be working with Morgan in continuing his racing career.”

Shepherd earned four NASCAR Sprint Cup Series victories in a career that began in 1970 and spanned 514 races. He finished four seasons in the top 10 of the point standings, with a career-best fifth in 1990. He has also earned 15 victories in 280 starts in the NASCAR Nationwide Series. He has competed in 19 of 24 Nationwide Series races in 2010.

Dreyer & Reinbold Racing announced Tuesday that Canadian driver Paul Tracy  will join the team in Kentucky and Japan. Tracy will replace the injured Mike Conway for the two events and will drive the team’s No. 24 Motegi Racing Wheels/ Dreyer & Reinbold Racing / Dallara entry.

Tracy has competed in 270 Indy car-type events. Tracy, the 2003 Champ Car World Series champion, will be making his tenth IZOD IndyCar start at Kentucky. However, it will be his first time to compete at Kentucky Speedway and his sixth time to compete at Twin Ring Motegi. He is one of the most successful drivers in the history of open-wheel racing with 31 career victories.

Wheel manufacturer Motegi Racing Wheels will join the team and Tracy for the two events, as they will sponsor the No. 24 entry.

“Motegi Racing Wheels is excited to be supporting one of the most exciting drivers, Paul Tracy for the Kentucky and Japan races. We”ve known the type of energy, honesty and excitement that PT brings to the series. Motegi Racing Wheels has had a great experience this year being associated with PT and certainly the Dreyer & Reinbold Team. It”s certainly been a great relationship and we appreciate the opportunity to work with Dennis & Robbie this year,” said Motegi Racing Wheels president, Jody Groce.

Tracy first ran with the team a couple of months ago at Watkins Glen and he will be making his return with DRR this weekend in Kentucky and Dreyer & Reinbold Racing couldn’t be more excited to have him on board.

“We are very happy to have Paul back with us for the next two events. He’s a great driver and big personality and we are thrilled to have him driving for us in Kentucky and Japan. Paul did a great job for us in Watkins Glen and we can’t wait to get him on an oval with us. We are also thrilled to have Motegi Racing Wheels with us for the two races as well. We have developed a great relationship with them and we know that Paul and Motegi Racing Wheels will be a great combination for Dreyer & Reinbold Racing for the next two events,” commented Dreyer & Reinbold Racing Co-Owner, Robbie Buhl.

Tracy, now in his 20th season, has had a storied career that has made him one of the top drivers in open-wheel racing. He is among the top-10 in almost every Champ Car career statistical category including wins, 31 (tied for seventh all-time), poles, 25 (ninth all-time), and laps led, 4,238 (sixth all-time).

Over the last 20 years, Tracy has earned 75 career podium performances, 102 top-five finishes and 144 top-10 showings in 270 starts (262 in Champ Car and eight in IZOD IndyCar, tied for seventh all-time). In the 15 seasons in which Tracy has competed in over 80 percent of the races, he has finished in the top-10 in the championship standings 10 times including eight times in the top-five, four in the top-three and captured the championship in 2003.

“It’s great to be back with the Dreyer & Reinbold Racing again this year. I’m excited to have the opportunity to run some ovals with the team. It’s been a while since I”ve raced on an oval but I’m ready for the challenge with the next two races plus I have some experience in Japan. Many thanks to Robbie & Dennis again for welcoming me to their team. Motegi Racing Wheels also deserves a big thanks for sticking by me. I”m also looking forward to working with Justin (Wilson) again. I also want to thank my personal sponsors for their continued support; Motegi Racing Wheels, CEC Wheels, Oakley, Kicker Car Audio & MONSTER Energy,” said Tracy.

(This story will be updated as news breaks today)

Info Manager | , RacinToday.com Tuesday, August 31 2010
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