Bodine named to drive for Team EJP in early season NCTS races Gardiner, ME: Steve Prescott, owner of Team EJP Racing, has announced 1986 Daytona 500 winner Geoffrey Bodine as the new driver of the team's No. 03 Chevrolet Silverado to open the...
Bodine named to drive for Team EJP in early season NCTS races
Gardiner, ME: Steve Prescott, owner of Team EJP Racing, has announced 1986 Daytona 500 winner Geoffrey Bodine as the new driver of the team's No. 03 Chevrolet Silverado to open the 2004 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series season.
Bodine, a winner of 18 NASCAR Nextel Cup Series races in addition to hundreds of short track wins in his storied career, brings a level of experience to the team that Prescott believes will be invaluable, especially for the upcoming Daytona Speedweeks.
"Geoffrey won the Daytona 500 in 1986, before they put restrictor plates on the Cup cars," Prescott said. "He knows how to work the throttle in the draft, and he has proven he can win in those conditions. That is exactly the kind of racing the Trucks have at Daytona now. It is a throwback to the way it used to be. And to have someone who was successful in this style of racing is going to give us a pretty solid chance come February."
Bodine, for his part, is equally enthusiastic about his new opportunity.
"In 2002, my son Barry drove some races for the Prescotts, and I was very impressed with the level of professionalism the entire team showed," Bodine said. "I have no doubt that we will go to Daytona and be competitive. The team has great trucks, strong power under the hood, and a talented bunch of guys that work on them. I am looking forward to getting to Daytona for the test, and even more than that, I can't wait to get down there and race."
Bodine is not a stranger to NCTS competition. He fielded a team in the series from 1995 through 1997, and has 15 career starts in the division.JAs a driver, he has scored one Bud Pole Award, six top-5 finishes, and 8 top-10 finishes. He has scored three runner-up finishes in the NCTS, all coming in the series first year, 1995. His last appearance in a Truck came in March 2003 at Darlington. As a team owner, Bodine has three NCTS victories (with driver Dave Rezendes, at Homestead, I-70, and Sears Point, all in 1997).
Plans call for Team EJP Racing to enter Bodine in at least the first six races of the 2004 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series season. The team is prepared to make a run at the series championship, but is awaiting word on sponsorship before making that commitment.
"There isn't anything we would like more than to go and run every race this year," said Prescott. "We have spent all winter upgrading our operation while working on finding the sponsorship to make it happen. We have six trucks ready to go in the shop, and we have added some personnel. All that is missing is that commitment from a sponsor."
Prescott also addressed the situation with the team's driver during the 2003 season, Eric Jones.
"We really like Eric, and we want him to have every opportunity to be a success in this sport," said Prescott. "But we needed to make a decision based upon what was best in the long run for this race team.
We are still working on some sponsorship programs with Eric, and if they come to fruition, we think we can run up front and be competitive with him. But at the same time, if a better opportunity presents itself to him, we certainly don't want to hold him back from a full-time ride."
Bodine has recently returned from a six-day trip to the Middle East to visit with coalition troops. He visited Iraq, Kuwait, and Qatar while overseas, and made the trip with several other NASCAR personalities.