CONCORD, N.C. (Nov. 18, 2009) – Earnhardt Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates announced today that they will add NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) driver Jamie McMurray as a teammate of Juan Pablo Montoya, to drive the No. 1 Bass Pro Shops / Tracker Boats Chevrolet for the 2010 NSCS season. Fresh off his win at the Talladega Superspeedway on Nov. 1, McMurray will return to Ganassi whom he raced for from 2002-05. Bass Pro Shops will once again return for their fifth season as one of the primary partners on the No. 1 Chevrolet.
MCMURRAY BEHIND THE WHEEL: The Joplin, MO native has won three NSCS races since he entered the series near the end of 2002. In his seven years and 258 races at NASCAR’s highest level he has 30 career top-five finishes and 80 top-10 results. McMurray shocked the racing world in 2002 when he won his first NSCS race while racing for CGRFS in only his second NSCS start and set a modern-era NASCAR record by becoming the quickest driver to win a cup race. The 2003 Rookie of the Year has finished in the top-20 in points in five of his seven seasons on the Cup circuit with a best finish of 11th in 2004.
COMING HOME: McMurray broke into the NSCS in 2002 as a member of the Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates team of drivers and spent three full seasons there from 2003-05. Those three seasons are statistically the best seasons of McMurray’s career. In those three years he had a combined 18 top-five finishes and 46 top-10s and competed until the end for a spot in the 10-member Chase field every year. He finished 13th, 11th and 12th in those three seasons. His 23 top-10 finishes in 2004 were tied for second most with Jimmie Johnson and behind only Jeff Gordon in the NSCS.
LAYING THE FOUNDATION: McMurray won his first two Nationwide Series races and scored his first Cup win within a four-week period in 2002. He finished sixth in the NNS standings in 2002 and posted career-bests in top-fives (six) and top-10s (14). McMurray has seven NNS wins under his belt and one truck series victory and has also raced in the NASCAR Midwest Series. McMurray began racing competitively at eight-years-old when he started with go-karts. He won four U.S. Go-Kart titles from 1986-92 and was World Go-Kart Champion in 1991.
AWAY FROM THE TRACK: McMurray has been equally as active off the track as he has been on with the Jamie McMurray Foundation (JMF). Created in 2006, the foundation was formed to promote awareness of, and raise funding for, research, education and support for individuals and families affected by autism. The JMF is dedicated to bringing the financial backing and support of the NASCAR community, together with the passion and commitment of the autism community to promote better understanding of this challenging disability.
BASS PRO SHOPS: Bass Pro Shops, of Springfield, Missouri, will enter their fifth season in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series as one of the primary sponsors of the No. 1 Chevrolet. With 56 retail stores in 26 states and Canada, Bass Pro Shops are visited by over 100 million people annually. Their international catalog and internet retailing are second to none. The American Rod & Gun wholesale division sells to over 7,000 independently owned retail stores worldwide, and the Outdoor World Incentives sell Bass Pro Shops gift cards through over 132,000 retail outlets across America. Bass Pro Shops is also extremely proud of their restaurant division, featuring 26 unique locations.
Chip Ganassi, Team Owner:
“To be able to sign a veteran driver with the talent and experience of Jamie was important to us. We know Jamie and understand what makes him tick as a driver. We had a lot of success with Jamie in the early part of his career and are looking for more of the same. We also think he will be a tremendous compliment to Juan Pablo Montoya as well. The duo of McMurray and Montoya creates a very formidable team as we look to continue the momentum that has been established this year in our chase for the championship.”
Jamie McMurray, Driver:
“I am really excited about this opportunity with Earnhardt Ganassi Racing as I think Juan Pablo and Martin have shown this season, their equipment is as good as anyone’s in the garage. I am really looking forward to getting behind the wheel of their cars and once again competing for a NASCAR championship. It will also be fun to work with some of the people that I worked with when I was there a few years ago. They have really good people there. As an added bonus, I am really happy to have the opportunity to work with Bass Pro Shops as I grew up near Bass Pro’s headquarters in Springfield, MO and am a huge fan of their stores.”
Johnny Morris, Bass Pro Shops:
“We are proud to be able to continue our long relationship with Teresa Earnhardt and Chip Ganassi and we are also excited that a fine young feller from our home state, Jamie McMurray, will be our driver.”