Key personnel added and geared up as Ward Burton climbs closer

HIGH POINT, NC -- With Ward Burton within one race position out of the top spot in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series standings and a state-of-the-art new raceshop in the final stages of completion, Bill Davis Racing has added 21 new team members to...

HIGH POINT, NC -- With Ward Burton within one race position out of the top spot in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series standings and a state-of-the-art new raceshop in the final stages of completion, Bill Davis Racing has added 21 new team members to the #22 Caterpillar/Polaris, #93 Amoco/Siemens and #20 AT&T teams as well as the additional segment of the BDR organization gearing up for the introduction of the 2001 Dodge presence in NASCAR.

Heading the list of key personnel now working with BDR Crew Chiefs Tommy Baldwin, Gil Martin and Steve Bird and their respective teams is Mike Baxter, new controller for the Bill Davis Racing, and Mike Gross, now BDR Parts Manager after two-plus decades of service for several major vendors within the motorsports industry.

Baxter, a Greensboro native, brings over 25 years in accounting and finance as a CPA with several manufacturing companies in the Triad. Baxter will be responsible for overseeing all financial aspects for the rapidly expanding Bill Davis Racing operation.

Gross, 48, began almost three decades of NASCAR involvement in the NASCAR Modified ranks in 1972 in his native New York, where he owned a parts store. Gross most recently served nine years with BSR Products and two years with CV Products. He also is the race-day spotter for Burton, who now trails Winston Cup points leader Bobby Labonte by only three points entering the Coca-Cola 600 in two weeks at Lowe's Motor Speedway in Charlotte. Gray Warren, who has overseen the parts department at BDR for the past 30 months, will serve as Gross' assistant.

"We've worked extremely hard throughout our growth here to surround our programs with the best people available," said Mike Brown, General Manager, Bill Davis Racing. "in some instances, we have delayed filling positions so that we could wait on just the right people to become available. We're at a very critical stage in the shaping of our organization as we continue to grow and to hopefully improve the quality and performance of our three programs. We feel that the addition of these people will help us continue our successful climb."

New team members with the #22 Caterpillar/Polaris team are Ken Swanson (at-track engine specialist), Eric Slade (shock specialist) and Tony Anderson (gas man). New team members for the #93 Amoco/Siemens team and Raybestos Rookie-of-the-Year candidate Dave Blaney are Mark Karan (tire specialist), Mark Parrish (gas man/transporter driver) and Steve Covell (motorhome driver/ pit support). Jon Babek joins Head Engineer Todd Holbert as the BDR organization gears up for an extensive summer of competition and research-and-development on the Dodge Intrepid for 2001 NASCAR Winston Cup Series competition.

BDR Head Engine Builder Terry Elledge, an intergral player in the evolving Dodge NASCAR program, has added James Lilly, Bill McLeod, Bill Plage and Larry Shackleford to the motor department as the team gears up for the increasing demands of producing top on-track engines for drivers Burton, Blaney and BGN rookie Mike Borkowski while proceeding with development on the new Dodge powerplant for the 2001 season.

Eric Ellington joins his father Dan in the BDR fabrication department as does "Jersey" Mike Seivard. Keith Kushela has been added to work with BDR suspension development programs and J.W. Bartok has been added as a general in-shop mechanic. Terry Berry joins the expanding BDR showcar program. Pilots Mike Chaplin, David Dalrymple and Jason Hacker have provided flight support since the start of the current season.

***NOTE: The final touches are being put on the new 65,000 square-foot Bill Davis Racing shop that will house both the #22 Caterpillar/Polaris and #93 Amoco/Siemens NASCAR Winston Cup Series teams for drivers Ward Burton and Dave Blaney. Both teams should move into the spacious shop by the end of the month as the BDR operation continues its expansion in anticipation of the transition from Pontiac and Dodge race cars for the 2001 Winston Cup season. Photos of the new BDR shop can be seen later this week at -- amocoracing.com.

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Ward Burton , Bobby Labonte , Mike Brown , Mike Borkowski , Dave Blaney , Tommy Baldwin
Teams Bill Davis Racing