(image courtesy nascar.com)
Richard Petty Motorsports announced Wednesday it has tabbed veteran Sam Hornish Jr. to succeed Marcos Ambrose as the new driver of its #9 Ford Fusion for the 2015 Sprint Cup Series season.
This pairing brings together the 2006 Indianapolis 500 champ, Sam Hornish, Jr., with one of stock car racing’s legends and lands the former open-wheel champion his first full-time ride at the Sprint Cup Series level since 2010, when he was in the employ of Team Penske.
“This is a great opportunity to join Richard Petty Motorsports and the #9 Ford team in the Sprint Cup Series,” Hornish said. “Owners Richard Petty, Andrew Murstein and Doug Bergeron have built this organization into a championship-contending team with world-class sponsors and partners.”
“Many people have noticed the progress being made here and I’m ready to build off this momentum,” continues Hornish.
Hornish, 35, who finished runner-up in the 2013 NASCAR Nationwide Series championship driving for Penske Racing, did not compete in NASCAR full-time this year despite having offers.
When he (Hornish) found out he would not be retained by Penske at the end of 2013, Hornish said he would rather wait out a good, competitive situation rather than rush to take just any job.
Instead, he has driven part-time in the Nationwide Series this season making eight starts for Joe Gibbs Racing, winning at Iowa Speedway in May and earning the pole position at Talladega, Alabama, and his hometown Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.
It is great to see Hornish get into a reasonably considered quality full-time ride for 2015. Hornish has shown, over the last couple of years while driving for Team Penske in the Nationwide Series, that he has finally gotten a grasp of how to setup, and drive, a 3500 lb “door slammer”!
TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!