Chesterland, Ohio (January 28, 2003) -- With most of the country in a deep freeze, it is hard to imagine that the start of the 2003 CART Toyota Atlantic Championship is under two months away. With a fully healed driver and a tweaked team roster, Dede Roger's DSTP Motorsports is poised to reclaim the Championship that it last won in 2000.
Natalie Gustetter, Team Manager for DSTP Motorsports, feels that all the pieces are in place to give the team the best shot possible at this year's title.
"We have all of our cards in place and are ready to start a fresh season," said Gustetter. "We just know that the 2003 season is going to be a good one for DSTP, and we can't wait to get started. Team moral is very high and everyone is excited to win again. Let's go racing!"
American driver, Joey Hand, will return for his third season this year after winning the Rookie of the Year award in 2001. Hand entered the 2002 Championship as the favorite to win the title and was off to a great start with a third place finish in Monterrey, Mexico, and a pole at Long Beach. The Championship hopes came to a quick end following Long Beach as Hand was forced out of the car for six races after he sustained injuries in a testing incident at The Milwaukee Mile.
"Obviously, last year did not go as planned," said Hand, who is starting his third season with DSTP. "Since my accident last season, I've been looking forward to the start of this season. There is no question that we were championship contenders last year, and we plan on contending for the championship again this time around. I cannot thank Dede (Rogers) and the whole DSTP team enough for giving me another opportunity and for sticking with me throughout the tough times last year. The team and I are very excited to get back to our winning ways, and will begin to at the first race in Monterrey, Mexico."
A new addition to the DSTP is Brian Tate, who will oversee Public Relations for the team. Brian comes to DSTP after spending three years working in the Communication Department for the CART Toyota Atlantic Championship.
Through DSTP Motorsports, Dede Rogers has established herself as a true believer in promoting talented young American drivers into professional racing. Formed in 1994, DSTP first campaigned a team in the Dodge Shelby Pro Series before moving into the U.S. F2000 National Championship in 1995. Such notable drivers as Memo Gidley, Alex Barron, Sam Hornish, Jr. and Jerry Nadeau competed in cars fielded by DSTP before Buddy Rice swept to the Atlantic title during DSTP Motorsports first season in the series in 2000.