CHAMPCAR/CART: Gidley gets his chance in Portland

Barber Dodge Pro Series alumnus Memo Gidley has finally had opportunity knock squarely upon his door. This weekend at the CART FedEx Series Freightliner/G.I. Joe's Grand Prix at Portland International Raceway Gidley will pilot the No. 12 racecar...

Barber Dodge Pro Series alumnus Memo Gidley has finally had opportunity knock squarely upon his door. This weekend at the CART FedEx Series Freightliner/G.I. Joe's Grand Prix at Portland International Raceway Gidley will pilot the No. 12 racecar of Target Chip Ganassi Racing, replacing struggling rookie Nicolas Minassian.

The 30 year-old American is excited about the opportunity to drive for the 2000 Indy 500 and four-time CART champions.

"Every day for the past two years I have prepared for an opportunity to race for a team like Target Chip Ganassi Racing," Gidley said. "I can't thank Chip enough for giving me this chance to show what I can do on the track. I have been looking for a ride since the start of the season, and I have had some interest from some other teams but nothing had materialized until now. This is a first-class organization with a tradition of winning. When I got the call this morning, I can't tell you how excited I was. Now I need to focus on the job at hand to win a race for this team. This is a dream come true for me."

Gidley raced in the 1996 Barber Dodge Pro Series, amassing 49 points. He has appeared in 22 CART FedEx Series events over the past two years with his career-best 6th-place finish coming at Road America in 2000 while driving for Della Penna Motorsports.

Ganassi, himself a Skip Barber grad, has certainly had the winning formula over the past several seasons in the CART FedEx Series. His team has captured four of the last five driver titles, including one by another Barber Pro Series alumnus, Juan Pablo Montoya. Target Chip Ganassi Racing has two victories and four podium finishes to its credit at the Portland race.

-George Tamayo

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Juan Pablo Montoya
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing