Comments from Dodge Diversity Scholarship press conference. RAY EVERNHAM (President, CEO and team owner Evernham Motorsports) "Mike Ford (crew chief No. 9 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge Intrepid R/T) and I talked about a year ago about how it would...
Comments from Dodge Diversity Scholarship press conference.
RAY EVERNHAM (President, CEO and team owner Evernham Motorsports)
"Mike Ford (crew chief No. 9 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge Intrepid R/T) and I talked about a year ago about how it would be good if we could get kids out of school that understood a little bit about a NASCAR Winston Cup race car. We needed kids out of school that had a good, basic understanding of hydraulics and brake systems and fuel systems and things like that. Dodge has provided a training ground for those kids to come out, and also gave me as a business owner an opportunity to be a part of something that I'm proud of. I was raised never to look at race, color or religion. So, it's great to be a part of something that is giving an opportunity to people who would not otherwise have an opportunity to get into Winston Cup racing. The more opportunities we provide for them, the more our sport will grow. I'm very proud to do that."
DARRYL JACKSON (Vice President Dodge Marketing)
"This is a great honor for us. It shows Dodge's commitment and the dealers' commitment to the people we're selling cars to. We sell them to everybody, and we want to be committed and involved with everybody. That's what we always said we were going to do. The program was started by Jim Julow, and I'm just lucky to be sitting here and taking a little of the credit for it. It's a tremendous opportunity for us. I met Jason a year ago and I thought, 'what a confident guy.' I meet him now and think, 'what a real confident guy.' It just shows how the program really works and it really shows how people who have a dream can fulfill their dream. It's amazing to see the transformation. It's like a butterfly. I looked at the press clips and he says he wants to be a crew chief. I think that's great. I would challenge any of the other manufacturers to get involved as we have, even one tenth of what we've done. I'd just challenge them to be a part of the program. I think it's a major commitment to the people we sell our products to. If you think about it, it's probably not a bad marketing idea also."
JASON FLAMER, 23, HOUSTON, TEXAS
Flamer has already begun working with the No. 19 Dodge Dealers Intrepid R/T team.
"The program has done a lot for me, and I like what Dodge is doing. I've enjoyed working with Ray Evernham and the rest of the guys. It's a great deal. I'm really happy with the results of the program. It's a great team and a great bunch of guys. The hours are 7:30-5:30 with an hour for lunch, and we've been working six days a week on the average. I'm cleaning radiators, tearing down the cars. I'm originally from New York and I came south and went to school at N.C. A&T in Greensboro. That's where I really got interested in cars. I started working in dealerships, and I really got into it. I never wanted to drive, but I do want to be a crew chief. I'll give myself five years and then Mike Ford better watch out."