Three-time IndyCar champ gets number 9 Ford ride in NASCAR Sprint Cup.
As Motorsport.com revealed yesterday, Richard Petty Motorsports (RPM) has made it formal today announcing that three-time IndyCar Series Champion turned NASCAR winner, Sam Hornish, Jr. will join the storied organization to drive the No. 9 Ford in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series full-time in 2015. Hornish, Jr. joins RPM from Joe Gibbs Racing where he competed part-time in the NASCAR Nationwide Series this season scoring one win and four Top-Five finishes in only eight starts.
A seasoned and diverse driver, Hornish, Jr. has the ability to immediately win races for RPM in the Sprint Cup Series and compete in the 2015 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. The 35-year-old from Defiance, Ohio began his professional career in the IndyCar Series winning 19 times, including the Indianapolis 500, and three championships. His last championship came with Penske Racing who helped Hornish, Jr. make the transition into the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.
Hornish, Jr. has competed in three full seasons in the Sprint Cup Series as well as two full seasons in the Nationwide Series for Penske Racing where he finished second in points in 2013 by a mere three markers. In 2014, Hornish, Jr. has made the most of his time behind the wheel while driving a partial Nationwide Series schedule at Joe Gibbs Racing with two poles and a win. He is now ready to rejoin the Sprint Cup Series with RPM.
"This is a great opportunity to join Richard Petty Motorsports and the No. 9 Ford team in the Sprint Cup Series," said Hornish, Jr. "Owners Richard Petty, Andrew Murstein and Doug Bergeron have built this organization into a championship-contending team with world-class sponsors and partners. Many people have noticed to the progress being made here and I'm ready to build off this momentum. My goal is to put the No. 9 team in victory lane in 2015 and be a competitor in 'The Chase'."
The No. 9 team will continue to be led by Crew Chief Drew Blickensderfer who has three Sprint Cup Series wins to his credit. Co-Owner Richard Petty is proud to welcome Hornish, Jr. to the team.
"Sam is a really good fit for RPM and will be a great addition to the team," said Petty. "He's a family man who fits well with our core values and he will be a great ambassador for our partners. Sam's also proven that he can win races and compete for a championship. He came into the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series with a steep learning curve from open wheel racing, but has shown in the Nationwide Series that he is a winner. We feel that he can get the No. 9 team to Victory Lane and compete in 'The Chase' for us."