This Week in Ford Racing December 7, 2004 USAC Champion Bobby East Signs Long-Term Contract With Ford Racing Technology In a move designed to help advance his career long-term, 19-year-old USAC National Midget Car Series champion Bobby...
This Week in Ford Racing
December 7, 2004
USAC Champion Bobby East Signs Long-Term Contract With Ford Racing Technology
In a move designed to help advance his career long-term, 19-year-old USAC National Midget Car Series champion Bobby East has signed a long-term contract with Ford Racing Technology, it was announced today.
East, son of legendary USAC team owner and car builder Bob East, became the youngest USAC National champion in the organization's 49-year history when he captured seven feature victories and 21 top-10 finishes on the way to the 2004 National Midget crown.
"We are thrilled to have signed Bobby to a long-term contract with Ford," said Dan Davis, director of Ford Racing Technology. "He's a very impressive driver who has shown a tremendous amount of talent, ability and success at a very young age. We look forward to working together with Bobby to provide him opportunities to help him realize that same success long-term in NASCAR."
Davis said East will continue to run at least one more season in the USAC National Midget Car Series and the USAC Silver Crown series, while Ford arranges for him to test a variety of NASCAR race vehicles, with an eye on moving eventually to NASCAR NEXTEL Cup.
"I think it is all pretty cool," said Bobby East. "Dan Davis has been a big part of our Midget team since I started racing. I've always looked up to Dan and I'm excited to know that now down the road I'll be working with Dan and Ford Racing on getting my NASCAR career going.
"Ford's involvement in our USAC programs has been great. The amount of races we won this year, and how we did at tracks we had struggled at before ... well, it just showed that Ford's work helped us kick some butts at those places.
"Going forward, I really want to succeed in stock car racing," East added, "starting with the Busch Series and then going to NEXTEL Cup. I'm just very excited about the opportunity."
East has already captured 20 victories in just two years of full-time USAC competition (Sprint Cars 1, Silver Crown 6, National Midget 13).On the way to his championship this year, he won some of the series' most prestigious events, including the "Hut Hundred" in Terre Haute, Ind.; Eldora Speedway in Rossburg, OH during the "Buckeye Nationals;" the "Belleville Midget Nationals" in Belleville, KS; and a season-ending win in the "Turkey Night Grand Prix" in Irwindale, CA.