Crane and Shovel Sales/NorthCoast Engines joins with Cleveland-based CART Toyota Atlantic Championship winning team DSTP Motorsports. Chesterland, Ohio (July 10, 2002) - Dede Rogers, owner of DSTP Motorsports, today announced that Dick Leppla's...
Crane and Shovel Sales/NorthCoast Engines joins with Cleveland-based CART Toyota Atlantic Championship winning team DSTP Motorsports.
Chesterland, Ohio (July 10, 2002) - Dede Rogers, owner of DSTP Motorsports, today announced that Dick Leppla's Crane and Shovel Sales and NorthCoast Engines will join the 2000 CART Toyota Atlantic Championship-winning team as an associate partner for the Marconi Grand Prix of Cleveland this weekend. DSTP will campaign this Sunday's CART Toyota Atlantic event with winning driver Buddy Rice.
Leppla, Crane and Shovel Sales, and NorthCoast Engines enjoy a long-standing tradition in motorsports and the Cleveland Grand Prix. Leppla, himself an accomplished amateur and historic racer, owned the Truesports March Indy car that Bobby Rahal drove to victory in 1982's Cleveland 500. He also partnered with the Tasman Motorsports Indy Lights team that took Bryan Herta, Steve Robertson and Eddie Lawson to victory.
"It's a pleasure to have someone so involved and passionate about racing as Dick Leppla join us for our hometown race," said Rogers, whose DSTP team won the Cleveland Atlantic race in 2000 and finished second last year. "He enjoys such a significant history in motorsports as well as the Cleveland business community and we hope to continue our front-running form with Dick by our side this weekend."
"Dede has a very engaging and genuine personality," said Leppla. "She is a true racer and it reflects in her team's commitment to excellence and winning. We're looking forward to continuing with that tradition with a victory this weekend in Cleveland."
DSTP and Rice won the 2000 Cleveland Atlantic race after starting third. The team went on to win the Atlantic championship title that year with five wins, ten podiums and six fastest race laps in DSTP's rookie Atlantic season. Last year, driver Joey Hand provided one of the most memorable last-lap dashes for the win in Atlantic history, just narrowly missing victory and finishing second.
This weekend's Atlantic race, part of the Marconi Grand Prix of Cleveland CART FedEx Championship event, marks the 8th round of the 12-race Atlantic season. This will be Rice's fifth Atlantic race this year after beginning his substitute driver role for Hand at Laguna Seca. Hand, who was injured in a testing accident at the Milwaukee Mile in mid-May, anticipates returning to the cockpit of a DSTP Atlantic car for the final three races of the season beginning with the 10th round at Road America on August 18.
Through DSTP, Rogers has established herself as a true patron in promoting talented young American drivers into professional racing. Formed in 1994, DSTP first campaigned a team in the Dodge Shelby Pro Series before moving into the U.S. F2000 National Championship in 1995. Such notable drivers as Memo Gidley, Alex Barron, Sam Hornish, Jr. and Jerry Nadeau competed in cars fielded by DSTP before Rice swept to the 2000 Atlantic title, followed by Hand taking the 2001 Rookie-of-the-Year award by finishing third overall.
This weekend's 3-day Atlantic schedule begins with practice and qualifying on both Friday, July 12, and Saturday, July 13. The 32-lap Atlantic race is scheduled for 10:55 am ET on Sunday, July 14, and will be televised later that day at 5:00 pm ET on Speed Channel.
Further information is available at www.dstpmotorsports.com.