Joe Gibbs Racing Hires Mike Ford as Crew Chief for ...
Joe Gibbs Racing Hires Mike Ford as Crew Chief for #11 Team
HUNTERSVILLE, N.C., (June 7, 2005) - Joe Gibbs Racing has hired veteran crew chief Mike Ford to oversee the #11 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series team of driver Jason Leffler effective immediately.
Dave Rogers, the #11 team's former crew chief and a member of Joe Gibbs Racing since 1998, will remain with the organization.
"Despite extremely hard work by everyone at Joe Gibbs Racing, the performance of the #11 team wasn't where it needed to be," said J.D. Gibbs, president of Joe Gibbs Racing. "The #11 team is still a new operation, and we believe that adding the experienced leadership of Mike Ford to an already exceptional crew will be invaluable as we shape the #11 into a winning race team.
"Dave Rogers has been and will continue to be a tremendous asset to Joe Gibbs Racing. He was an integral part of our championship seasons with Bobby Labonte in 2000 and Tony Stewart in 2002, and he put together an absolutely first class crew from scratch in his debut as a crew chief.
"Expanding our organization to three teams has been a massive undertaking, but one that will pay huge dividends in the near future. We believe that adding Mike's experience to a management structure that includes Jimmy Makar (senior vice president of racing), Greg Zipadelli (crew chief of the #20 team) and Steve Addington (crew chief of the #18 team) will help us to turn the #11 team around."
A member of the motorsports community since the late 1980s, Ford's first crew chief position came with Bill Elliott in 2000. In four years together the duo logged four wins, including the prestigious Brickyard 400 in 2002. Ford moved to Robert Yates Racing in 2004, where he served as Dale Jarrett's crew chief through the first 11 races of this season.