BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (Feb 1, 2002) - Bob Dorricott officially announced today that former Barber Dodge Pro Series ace and Toyota Atlantic frontrunner Alex Gurney, of Newport Beach, Calif., has signed with Dorricott Racing for the 2002 Toyota...
BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (Feb 1, 2002) - Bob Dorricott officially announced today that former Barber Dodge Pro Series ace and Toyota Atlantic frontrunner Alex Gurney, of Newport Beach, Calif., has signed with Dorricott Racing for the 2002 Toyota Atlantic Championship.
Gurney, 26, completes a three-driver line-up that will campaign for Dorricott Racing in pursuit of the 2002 Toyota Atlantic Championship. Dorricott previously announced the return of Jon Fogarty, of Portola Valley, Calif., and the signing of Luis Diaz, of Mexico City.
Gurney, who is the youngest son of All American Racers Team owner Dan Gurney, is a veteran of multiple internationally recognized open-wheel formula racing series' including one season in the Barber Dodge Pro Series, two years in the Toyota Atlantic Championship, and one season of British Formula 3.
"This is a huge opportunity for me," said Gurney. "With the experience that I have now, I know that I am driving better than ever. The timing couldn't be better. I've admired the Dorricott Racing team and all that they've accomplished for several years now and I can't wait to get started! With Dorricott Racing, I am ready to fight for the championship."
Although he was exposed to auto racing from the time he was born, he didn't begin to seriously pursue a racing career until he began driving go-karts during his first year of college at the University of Colorado. After graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration in the spring of 1997, Gurney entered the Skip Barber Formula Dodge Midwest Championship. He showed immediate promise by taking 10 wins in 14 races, 10 fastest laps, Rookie of the Year honors, and second place in the Championship. At the end of '97, Alex was invited to the Team Green Academy where he ended up besting 25 other aspiring American drivers and won the Academy scholarship for 1998.
Gurney continued to improve and produce high-end results in 1998 when he competed in the Barber Dodge Pro Series where he again showed his speed by taking a pole at the Homestead event, scoring two top-five finishes, four top-10 showings, runner-up for Rookie-of-the-Year, and 10th place in the Pro Series overall standings.
He moved to the Toyota Atlantic Championship in 1999 and recorded a season-best fifth-place at Montreal, and a qualifying best of fourth at Houston while driving for P1 Racing/Team KOOL Green. An overall Atlantic finish of 12th place hid the fact that he scored points in each of the seven races he completed. His season wasn't absent of potential non-Atlantic variety. Gurney was also invited to test with Team KOOL Green in Indy Lights and the German Formula 3 team of KMS Benetton in Hockenheim, Germany.
Gurney's second year in Toyota Atlantic was with All-American Racers' first-year Atlantic program where he finished eight place in the Atlantic Championship. Gurney cemented his reputation as a front-runner by winning the pole at Cleveland, qualifying in the top-five in eight of 12 races, and scoring seven top-10 finishes. He also ran impressive tests with British F3 teams Alan Docking Racing, Jaguar, and Fortec Motorsport.
Gurney changed series and continents in 2001 when he ran in the British Formula 3 Championship in 2001. He was regularly "in the points" and scored eight top-10 finishes but was somewhat hampered by a new Renault engine still in development. He was among eight drivers invited by Dorricott Racing to test at Buttonwillow Raceway Park outside of Bakersfield, Calif., for potential driver openings in 2002. Gurney opened many eyes when he not only ran the fastest time of any invitee, but also ran some of the fastest recorded lap times of any driver Dorricott Racing had ever tested at Buttonwillow.
"He was quite impressive in our testing sessions and got up to speed as quickly as anyone we've ever tested," said team owner Bob Dorricott. "Alex not only proved his capabilities of racing with the best in the Barber Dodge Pro Series and Toyota Atlantic, he also demonstrated to us that he genuinely possesses the tangible skills and intangible traits required to win and consistently run in the front of a field."
Race results, team, and sponsor information are available on Dorricott Racing's official web site, http://www.dorricottracing.com. The 2002 Toyota Atlantic Championship opens its season at the Monterrey Grand Prix in Monterrey, Mexico, on Saturday, March 9, 2002.