GALESBURG, Ill. (December 4, 2000) - Pro Stock Truck team owner Rick Jones today named Mike Corvo Jr. as driver of the RJ Racecars GMC Sonoma for the 2001 NHRA Winston championship season. Jones also announced that Corvo will be bringing Motorhomes Unlimited of Elgin, Ill., to the team as a major sponsor.
"I love driving and have enjoyed racing the truck for the last two seasons," explained Jones. "My goal last year was to finish in the Winston top 10 and we were successful in doing that. It is now time to focus on next year and taking this program to the next level. I think the combination of Mike driving and me as crew chief will give our team the capability to be a major contender for the 2001 Winston Pro Stock Truck championship.
"I want to thank everyone who worked so hard this year to give us our top-10 finish: crewmembers Charles Burnett, Paul Yates, Rickie Jones and Bonnie Jones. I also want to thank Don Peden of Country Motors Trailer Sales, Jerry Grebner of Grebner Motors, David Reher, Fred Simmonds, Harry Turner and Alba Colon."
Jones, who had his best season as a Pro Stock Truck racer in 2000, qualified for 12 events, won eight rounds of eliminations (.400) and finished ninth in the final points tabulation. His best performance of the year came at Atlanta where he advanced to the semi-final round before losing to Randy Daniels. At Memphis, Jones ran the quickest elapsed time ever by a GMC Sonoma Pro Stock Truck at 7.462 seconds which was also a personal best for the championship winning chassis builder.
"I feel that our team can be more successful if I am the crew chief and can be in a position on the starting line to watch and tune the truck," Jones said. "I'm very excited to have this chance to work with Mike. He is a long-time customer, and good friend and I think he will do a great job as a Pro Stock Truck driver."
The 31-year-old Corvo, who hails from Park Ridge, Ill., has spent the last few seasons racing a Pontiac Firebird in the Competition Eliminator division.
"This opportunity really comes at the perfect time for me," Corvo said. "Rick explained to me that he was thinking of stepping out of the driver's seat because he felt that he could be more beneficial to the team as crew chief. Rick and I have a great relationship as business associates and have developed a good friendship over the last several years. We only live a couple of hours apart and it just seems like the perfect time to join together with the GMC Sonoma Pro Stock Truck program.
"I am proud to say that 2001 will mark my sixth consecutive year with Motorhomes Unlimited as a major sponsor. Their help has been invaluable and we would like to thank Bob Ettelman for his continued support. We are also pleased to announce an associate sponsorship with VFN Fiberglass."
With just nine weeks before the beginning of the new season, diligent preparation for 2001 continues at RJ Racecars.
"It's full speed ahead," Corvo said. "We're expecting delivery of a new GMR trailer on January 1, and David Reher and the team at Reher-Morrison is working hard to make good horsepower for us. We will all be working on this GMC Sonoma with our sights set high for Pomona."