BUSCH: Compton signs with Busch team

For the 2002 season, Stacy Compton, 34, signed with ST Motorsports in the Busch series. At the 2001 season finale, Compton drove the No. 59 Monte Carlo for ST Motorsports at Homestead-Miami. "I'm excited about joining ST Motorsports and...

For the 2002 season, Stacy Compton, 34, signed with ST Motorsports in the Busch series. At the 2001 season finale, Compton drove the No. 59 Monte Carlo for ST Motorsports at Homestead-Miami.

"I'm excited about joining ST Motorsports and having the opportunity to compete weekly in the Busch Series," Compton said. "I ran the last race of the season for the team and if what I saw is any indication of what I'll be working with, I think we will be a legitimate threat."

Compton and Melling Racing parted company at the end of the Winston Cup series season due to lack of sponsorship. Compton was with Melling for two years; in 2000 with a Ford and this year in the No. 92 Kodiak Dodge. Team owner, Mark Melling had to lay off employees last month [link to story]

Prior to Winston Cup, Compton was the driver for Melling Racing in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck series.

"They should be fired up because they've got a good driver," Melling spokesman Lake Speed Jr. said of Compton's deal with ST. "To us that's a great thing.

"Driving the Busch races will help Stacy develop as a driver in a way we couldn't do for him in our current situation," Melling said.

ST Motorsports team owner, Tad Geschickter, apparently has not suffered the fate of other Winston Cup and Busch teams due to loss of sponsorship and the current economy.

"The team definitely has all the pieces to the puzzle, we just need to put them together," Compton said.

Geschickter, who thought he had secured a deal with Busch Series veteran Jeff Purvis before Purvis signed with Brewco Motorsports, which is located closer to his Tennessee home, claims Compton is a diamond in the rough.

"I've followed Stacy's racing career and I'm impressed with his accomplishments," Geschickter said of his new driver's two victories, 25 top-five and 43 top-10 finishes in 82 career Truck Series starts. "We think he will help us reach a higher level of success and establish the consistency we need week to week."

No word on Rich Bickle who drove the No. 59 Chevrolet for most of the 2001 Busch Series season.

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Series NASCAR-CUP , NASCAR-NS