HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. (January 15, 2001) - Joe Gibbs Racing has announced a reorganization for its NASCAR Busch Series operation for the 2001 season. Veteran NASCAR Busch Series driver Jeff Purvis will move from the ...
HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. (January 15, 2001) - Joe Gibbs Racing has announced a reorganization for its NASCAR Busch Series operation for the 2001 season. Veteran NASCAR Busch Series driver Jeff Purvis will move from the #4 Pontiac to the #18 MBNA Pontiac. Gibbs also announced that the #4 Pontiac will change car numbers to #20 to match those of the Joe Gibbs Racing Winston Cup cars driven by Bobby Labonte (#18) and Tony Stewart (#20). Doug Richert, team manager for the Busch Series teams, will continue to serve as crew chief for Purvis. Tim Shutt, will serve as the crew chief for the #20 Pontiac. The team members from the #4 car will also move with Purvis to the #18 MBNA Pontiac, with the former #18 team members moving to the #20 team.
A sponsor is being sought for the #20 team after internal consolidation forced last seasons sponsor, Porter-Cable, to withdraw their 2001 sponsorship last week. A new driver is also being sought for the #20 team. "Jeff Purvis will do an outstanding job for MBNA, and I'm confident we will find a talented driver and sponsor to build around for the #20 car," said team owner Joe Gibbs. "We believe both of our teams will be contenders in the NASCAR Busch Series for years to come."
Gibbs also thanked last year's sponsor Porter-Cable Power Tools. "We appreciate the support over the last year from Porter-Cable and wish them the best in the future."
"I am really looking forward to driving for MBNA this year, they have developed such a strong NASCAR presence," Purvis said. "Last year they were a key part in Bobby Labonte's championship, hopefully we can bring them a Busch Series Championship this season." Despite the restructuring, the team members remain busy at work preparing both cars for the season opening NAPA 300 at Daytona International Speedway on February 17th.
"We are pleased that we were able to keep every Busch Series team employee working, several of whom were offered other opportunities during the off-season but elected to remain loyal to Joe Gibbs Racing," said Steve de Souza, Vice President of Joe Gibbs Racing Busch and Truck Series Operations. "I believe both of our teams will battle hard for poles, wins and the championship this year."