Brandon Whitt + Clean Line Racing return for 2003 with New Crew Chief, Chassis + Race Shop.
January 6, 2003, Bakersfield, California: Three weeks after receiving rookie-of-the-year honors at the Featherlite Southwest Series, NASCAR Touring banquet, Brandon Whitt and his family-owned Clean Line Racing team have upgraded virtually every facet of their racing operation for the 2003 season. The changes begin with new Crew Chief Jerry Pitts, who was previously Crew Chief for Winston West Champion Eric Norris in 2002. Pitts will be joined in the team's new 5700 square foot Bakersfield race shop by new Car Chief Bob "Toby" Tobias, who served as Crew Chief for Dan Holtz last season.
"At the end of last season, we looked at every aspect of our team to find areas for improvement," explains Brandon's father Dan Whitt, who owns the Clean Line Racing team. "We wanted to give Brandon the best opportunity to win races, and we thought that the most important step would be to bring on a championship-caliber Crew Chief who could prepare the car on a day-to-day basis in addition to directing our efforts on race weekends."
The team has also switched to the championship-winning Victory Circle chassis, and in fact the team's new race shop is located within the Victory Circle complex in Bakersfield. Pitts and Tobias will be joined in Bakersfield by their driver Brandon, who is leaving the family home in El Cajon so that he can continue to work on his car throughout the season.
"It's kind of the end of an era for me and my family," says Brandon about the upcoming changes. "For most of my life we've been operating racing teams in and around our family home in El Cajon. It was time for us to take the team to a new level, and that meant locating the race shop in a place where engine and chassis parts can be had on a moment's notice rather than by overnight mail. It's going to be a great learning experience working with Jerry and Toby on a daily basis, and we hope to be in a position to win races and contend for the championship."
Building on his three semesters of undergraduate study in El Cajon, Brandon has enrolled at Bakersfield College for classes that begin on January 21st, and will continue working towards his BS in Engineering. The first Southwest Featherlite race of the 2003 season will take place at Phoenix International Raceway on February 2nd.