Robert Yates announced changes today at the team shops for the Winston Cup series. Dale Jarrett's crew chief, Todd Parrott will move to the position of team manager. Parrott has been with Jarrett since 1996 and during that time, the team has won 24 races and the NASCAR Winston Cup championship in 1999. However, this year has seen a lackluster performance and the team felt it was time for a change.
Replacing Parrott as the No. 88 crew chief will be Jimmy Elledge. Elledge comes in with an extensive background in NASCAR racing and was chosen by Parrott.
"We were real strong outta the box this year, but we want to deliver that package to the head table in New York and with Jimmy's talents and knowledge in racing," Parrott said. "With all the talent with us and Robert Yates, Doug Yates, Dale Jarrett; I think we can do that. Bringing Jimmy on will be a big plus for our whole team."
Elledge, 31, worked with Kenny Wallace and Bobby Hamilton for Andy Petree Racing during the past three season as crew chief for the No. 55.
"I've known (Elledge) my whole career in racing," Parrott said. "He's a racer, just like me. He does not care about all the hoopla and whatever. He'll do what it takes to win."
For a time, Yates was unaware that Parrott was considering moving to a different role within the team structure.
"I want to do what it takes to win, even if it means to give up the crew chief title. I wanted to bring somebody in who had to work hard to get to where he's at. I see that in Jimmy and so did Robert. There was a sparkle in Robert's eye last night when we were talking about it."
"With Todd and Jimmy working together, it will only strengthen the 88 team," owner Robert Yates said. "Jimmy is a known commodity who brings talent and added depth to our organization as we continue to improve our programs."
"Dale and I are extremely close, and I will do whatever I can to make him and the UPS team champions," Parrott said. "As team manager, I will be able to spend more time with the guys that work at the shop and focus on some things that we can improve on to achieve just that. I have all the confidence in Jimmy that he will help lead this team to another championship season."