Racin’ News: Erwin Is Allmendinger’s New Crew Chief
In Racin’ News today, Monday, July 18:
(In this package: New crew chief for Allmendinger; Yelley to Front Row)
Richard Petty Motorsports officials announced today that Greg Erwin has joined the team and will replace Mike Shiplett as crew chief for the No. 43 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series entry driven by AJ Allmendinger.
“Mike and I have been together for a long time, so from a personal standpoint this is difficult for me,” said Allmendinger. “We’ve worked really well together and I think our personalities really complemented each other. Mike and I both came into this year really committed to working on our weaker areas. I know we both tried our best to be better and communicate better – I couldn’t have asked for either of us to try any harder. Sometimes though, you need to take a step back and have a new perspective or new set of eyes look at things to move to the next level.”
Erwin had served as crew chief for Greg Biffle at Roush Fenway Racing. He joined Biffle in 2007 and was replaced last week there by Matt Puccia.
Together, Biffle and Erwin won five races.
“Greg Erwin is a really talented crew chief and we’re lucky to have him come on board with us,” Allmendinger said. “He has had a lot of success, brings a fresh perspective and has shown he knows exactly what it takes to win. I’m looking forward to seeing what we can do together and taking the team to that next level.”
Erwin’s Roush Fenway team made the Chase for the Championship three times, finishing as high as third in the year end point standings.
“When one door closes, another one opens and this is great example of that,” said Erwin. “I couldn’t be happier to have found a new home at Richard Petty Motorsports. To work with Richard Petty and lead the iconic No. 43 team is a great opportunity for me. AJ Allmendinger has shown that he has a great deal of talent and I’m excited to have the chance to get the No. 43 team back to victory lane.”
J.J. Yeley will join Front Row Motorsports for the remainder of the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series schedule, splitting time between the No. 55 Ford and the No. 38 Ford. The seven-year Sprint Cup veteran filled in for Travis Kvapil in the No. 38 Long John Silver’s Ford at New Hampshire Motor Speedway last weekend, finishing 23rd.
“J.J. is a great addition to our team,” said team owner Bob Jenkins. “He brings a lot of good experience and it showed right away in his first weekend in one of our cars. We’re still a relatively young team and trying to grow each year, and I think bringing J.J. aboard is a good step in that progress.”
Yeley had been driving for Whitney Motorsports for the first half of the 2011 season. He joins fellow veteran drivers Kvapil and David Gilliland as teammates at Front Row.
“When they said they were looking to add someone, I jumped at the opportunity,” said Yeley. “I’m really looking forward to working with the Ford horsepower under the hood – it’s phenomenal. And, as a team, we all worked well together. We had a good first week together, and we’re just going to keep building from there.”
Yeley will be in the No. 55 Ford for the series’ next race July 31 at Indianapolis (Ind.) Motor Speedway.No Comment