Furniture Row Racing Seals Three-Year Deal with Nemechek
Four-Time NEXTEL Cup Winner to Take a Lead in FRR Expansion Plans
DENVER--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Furniture Row Racing announced today that the Denver-based NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series organization signed a three-year contract with NASCAR driver Joe Nemechek. Nemechek, who has collected four NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series wins, nine pole awards and numerous front row starting spots since 1997, will drive for Furniture Row Racing’s #78 NEXTEL Cup Series team and will work with owners in efforts to build a second team in 2008.
“We are thrilled to have Joe on board”
“We are thrilled to have Joe on board,” said Furniture Row Racing Team Manager Joe Garone. “We’re geared up to win in 2008 and planning for growth as we enter our third NEXTEL Cup season. After an extensive search and evaluation, we concluded that Joe is the man to get us where we need to be in 2008 and beyond. He is the best qualifier and best average finisher of available drivers. He’s also a great guy and a proven leader. When we put it all together, the choice was easy.”
Furniture Row Racing ran their first NASCAR NEXTEL Cup series in 2005, bringing on NASCAR driver and motor sport personality Kenny Wallace in October 2006.
“Kenny was instrumental in helping us build the foundation for this team,” explained Garone. “He did an excellent job in getting things going out here in Denver. Now we look forward to working with Joe to take this team to the next level.”
Furniture Row Racing announced plans last July to seek additional sponsorship for car #78 and to ultimately direct Furniture Row Racing sponsorship to formation of a second team. Implementation of the plan will become a priority in 2008, with guidance and support from Nemechek both on and off the track.
“This team is definitely headed for success,” said Nemechek, who has driven the #78 car in nine NEXTEL Cup races beginning at the California Speedway on Sept. 2. “I’ve known Joe Garone, Jay Guy and others on the team for a long time, and they are an outstanding group of people. Since coming on board back in September, I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know Barney Visser, and I’ve learned he’s determined to build a very competitive Cup team. He’s pulling together all the right pieces – the people, the equipment – everything that should be happening is happening.”
Nemechek qualified in seven of the last nine NASCAR events for Furniture Row Racing and will participate in his first race as the official driver for Team #78 at Texas Motor Speedway this Sunday.
“We’re bringing a race-proven winner to our team,” stated Furniture Row Racing Crew Chief Jay Guy. “Joe is an accomplished driver and will help catapult us into the contender series.”
Nemechek, who began his racing career in motocross at age 13, earned the title of NASCAR Busch Series Rookie of the Year in 1990. He led NEMCO Motorsports to the NASCAR Busch Series Championship in 1992 and was named Most Popular Driver in 1992 and 1993.
He made the move to the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series in 1994, with a 1999 Jiffy Lube 300 victory at New Hampshire International Speedway, marking the first major milestone of his promising career. Several more NEXTEL Cup victories set the stage for his most successful career weekend in October 2004. Driving for the MB2 Motorsports/U.S. Army entry at Kansas Speedway, Nemechek picked up the Bud Pole award for the NEXTEL Cup race, then went on to sweep the weekend with wins in the Busch Series race as well as the NEXTEL Cup Series race, becoming the first driver ever to pick up the triple crown.
Furniture Row Racing runs car #78 in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series. The team and its primary sponsor, the Furniture Row Companies, are based out of Denver, Colorado. Furniture Row is one of the largest family-owned specialty home furnishings and bedding retailers. The company is comprised of four specialty store brands including: Sofa Mart, Oak Express, Bedroom Expressions and Denver Mattress Co., and operates over 330 stores in 31 states.