CHIP GANASSI RACING TABS RISING USAC STAR BRYAN CLAUSON AS DEVELOPMENT DRIVER INDIANAPOLIS (January 10, 2006) -- Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates announced today a partnership with up-and-coming USAC National Sprint Car and Midget Series...
CHIP GANASSI RACING TABS RISING USAC STAR BRYAN CLAUSON AS DEVELOPMENT DRIVER
INDIANAPOLIS (January 10, 2006) -- Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates announced today a partnership with up-and-coming USAC National Sprint Car and Midget Series standout Bryan Clauson of Noblesville, Ind. as part of the team's Driver Development Program. Clauson, son of former Sprint Car driver Tim Clauson, will contest an arduous race schedule comprised of USAC National Sprint Car and Midget Series events. This weekend's O'Reilly Chili Bowl Midget Nationals will start his season-long campaign, where he'll do battle with 269 other competitors from 31 different states inside the Tulsa Expo Center in Oklahoma.
"I think what you have here is obviously a young and very talented driver in Bryan," said Ganassi. "We've been keeping close tabs on his progress over the past year or so, and were pleased to see him improve and realize continued success on the track. I think this program is a direct result of the promise he shows behind the wheel of a race car."
Clauson, a native of Sacramento, Calif., rose to stardom last season in the USAC National Sprint Car division when he took over the Keith Kunz Motorsports seat overseen by USAC staple Keith Kunz. With a win at Columbus Motor Speedway (Ohio), he became the youngest driver in the 50-year history of the sanctioning body to win a National Feature event at just 16 years, three months and 23 days.
"Bryan is one of those young drivers who has been on my list since about this time last year," said Lorin Ranier, of Chip Ganassi Racing's Driver Development Program. "He has extraordinary patience and smoothness, and we are excited about working with him as he continues to develop as a driver. Our program with Keith and Bryan is a positive situation for all parties involved. It's a collective effort between the Charlotte and Indianapolis Ganassi Racing facilities, so Bryan will have a tremendous amount of support behind him this year."
Over the past nine years, Clauson has won several championships on both dirt and pavement in a variety of cars. At the tender age of five he began cutting his teeth in a race car, and has won titles and races in every one of the biggest venues and series he's tried his hand at.
"The Chip Ganassi Racing team name says it all," said Clauson. "It means a lot to me that an organization of this caliber would stand behind me as I try to take my career to the next level. It's a bit overwhelming to be honest, but that's not to say that I won't be giving it my all every step of the way. This is a tremendous opportunity with both the Charlotte and Indianapolis sides of the Ganassi organization working together, and I want to work hard to make the most of it."
The National Sprint Car Series portion of the development partnership with Columbus, Ind.-based Keith Kunz Motorsports will include a Dodge engine program in association with Chip Ganassi Racing. Clauson's National Midget Series program will run Bullet chassis with factory support from Fontana Engines, based out of Gardena, Calif.
"This is a very important and special opportunity for our team, and I can't say enough about the fact we are working in conjunction with Chip Ganassi Racing," said Kunz. "It's also a huge shot in the arm for USAC Racing in general, because you now have names like Chip's team and others stepping up and supporting our racing efforts. We couldn't be more thrilled about getting the season underway."
Fans of Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates can follow Bryan Clauson and Keith Kunz Motorsports by logging onto www.bryanclauson.com, and keep up with the team's successes throughout the 2006 season by logging onto the official USAC website at www.usacracing.com for news, features, photos and much more.