Monsam to assume Crew Chief duties at Xpress Motorsports. MOORESVILLE, NC (June 17, 2002) - Dave Fuge, team manager of Xpress Motorsports, announced today that veteran NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series crew chief John Monsam has assumed those duties...
Monsam to assume Crew Chief duties at Xpress Motorsports.
MOORESVILLE, NC (June 17, 2002) - Dave Fuge, team manager of Xpress Motorsports, announced today that veteran NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series crew chief John Monsam has assumed those duties for the team effective immediately. Xpress Motorsports fields the No. 16 IWX Motorsports Freight Chevrolet Silverado driven by Mike Bliss in NCTS competition this season.
"We were looking to add leadership and winning experience to our team and John certainly does that," stated Fuge, who will give up his title of crew chief at Xpress Motorsports to concentrate more on his team manager and chassis specialist duties with the organization. "We want to take John's experience and integrate it into our program. We have a good team and we want to take it to the next level. We're sure John can help us do that."
"The fact that Dave is willing to bring in someone like myself shows they are focused on building the team and not worried about individual accomplishments," said Monsam. "I'm happy to join a team where the owner, Steve Coulter, gives us all the resources it takes to win."
Monsam has been a fixture in the Truck Series winning his first race with driver Ron Hornaday, Jr. in 1997. Monsam later won again, this time with Rick Carelli handling the driving chores at Richmond (VA) International Raceway in 2000. This season, Monsam, a Granby, CT native who first worked with driver Rob Moroso in the NASCAR Busch Series in 1985, led Dennis Setzer to a Truck Series win at Martinsville, VA.
"John knows how to win and is capable of helping us win races and compete for the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series championship," stated Fuge. "At the start of the year, everyone thought there were three or four trucks to beat every week. Now we're seven races into the season and there have been six different winners and there are four trucks that could have won that haven't done so yet. We need to be stronger to be able to keep up and beat that kind of competition."
Monsam's first stint as a crew chief came in 1994 guiding Ricky Craven to a runner-up finish in the NASCAR Busch Series. Fuge is hoping the addition of Monsam will help propel Bliss and the No. 16. IWX Chevy to the top of the NCTS standings this season.
"John will take over the raceday activities on pit road," said Fuge, who had been serving both as crew chief and team spotter on raceday. "This is a move that is definitely going to help our team. John will make sure things go smoothly on pit road and I can concentrate on spotting. I'm confident John's pit road experience is going to make us a much better race team."
Currently, Bliss is fourth in the 2002 NCTS championship chase, just 37 points out of first place. Earlier this season, Bliss guided his IWX Chevy to a victory at Pikes Peak International Raceway winning the Rocky Mountain 200.
Xpress Motorsports has been active in NASCAR competition fielding Craftsman Truck, Winston Cup and Busch Series entries since 1996. The team operates out a 12,000-square-foot shop in Mooresville, NC and is owned by Coulter, the founder of IWX Motor Freight, one of the nation's largest cartage companies.
Monsam will see his first duty for Xpress Motorsports in the O'Reilly 200 at Memphis Motorsports Park, Saturday, June 22. The event will take the green flag at 1 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time and will be telecast live on ESPN and broadcast as it happens on MRN Radio.