Allmendinger Signs for Richard Petty Motorsports Watkins Glen, NY, 6 August 2010-- Arriving at the 2007 Daytona 500 with less than 150 laps of stock car driving experience under his lap belts, AJ Allmendinger faced an uphill battle as he looked...
Allmendinger Signs for Richard Petty Motorsports
Watkins Glen, NY, 6 August 2010-- Arriving at the 2007 Daytona 500 with less than 150 laps of stock car driving experience under his lap belts, AJ Allmendinger faced an uphill battle as he looked to translate a winning open-wheel background into success in the NASCAR Sprint Cup ranks. Deepening the disadvantage as his career progressed was the constant wave of change, as the Californian worked hard to find success while adapting to different manufacturers, teams, and crew chiefs in an entirely new discipline.
But those hard turns made for an even stronger racer, and now AJ Allmendinger will look to translate a stable home at Richard Petty Motorsports into greater glory in the future as the team announced on Friday at Watkins Glen International that Allmendinger has signed a multiyear contract to drive the No. 43 Ford Fusion in NASCAR Sprint Cup Series competition.
Allmendinger first raced with the organization in 2008 as he impressed with strong finishes in a season-ending run of five races, netting him the chance to rejoin the team as Gillett Evernham Motorsports merged with Yates Racing and the Petty organization to form Richard Petty Motorsports in 2009.
AJ launched the 2009 NASCAR Sprint Cup season with a run to third in the Daytona 500 as he raced to keep racing, using funding from prize money to continue to keep the machine on track despite a sponsorship shortage.
That drive and commitment won him a shot in the famed No. 43 under the watchful eye and guiding hand of The King, Richard Petty, for 2010. With a pole position in Phoenix and a strong mid-season run of top-15 race finishes, that vote of confidence by the team has been repaid as Allmendinger has flourished in the stabilized situation.
Getting the opportunity to drive the No. 43 for the King in a competitive environment, with the chance to lock in a stabilized future, was too much for Allmendinger to pass up.
"I have to say that I'm pretty excited about moving into the next chapter of my career with Richard Petty Motorsports," said AJ. "There were several other good opportunities out there, but for the first time in my NASCAR career I have the chance to continue building on something good. I really think all of us on the 43 and at RPM can maximize that. We're all pretty passionate about that."
Allmendinger recently made his 100th NASCAR Sprint Cup start, and he picks up new supporters every time out.
"We are very pleased to have AJ as a part of the RPM family," said team owner Richard Petty. "He has proven without a doubt that he is a very talented racer. His passion for the sport is second to none and his desire to be at the top is clear each and every week. I believe in him and what he can do and everyone at Richard Petty Motorsports is thrilled to be able to continue the relationship."
AJ will look to keep the strong runs going this weekend as the NASCAR Sprint Cup returns to road course action in Sunday's Heluva Good! Sour Cream Dips at the Glen.
-source: walldinger racing