Nascar Gets Bigger
March 26, 2005
NASCAR BUSCH SERIES GETS BIGGER WITH ADDITION OF FURNITURE ROW RACING
Veteran racer and former NASCAR Director Joe Garone is crew chief for the No. 78 Furniture Row® Chevy Monte Carlo driven by Jerry RobertsonNASHVILLE, Tenn., March 25, 2005 — There will be one more team to watch this weekend when the NASCAR Busch Series takes to the concrete oval at Nashville Superspeedway, and a second chance for driver Jerry Robertson to prove himself on the national stage.Robertson, 43, is returning to the NASCAR Busch Series after making a brief appearance in 1997, where he took the wheel for three races before a lack of sponsorship ended his ambitions. Robertson returns to the NASCAR Busch Series in 2005. This time he has a new ride, a veteran crew chief in Joe Garone and a major sponsor in the newly created Furniture Row Racing team, backed by the nation’s fourth largest family-owned specialty home furnishings and bedding retailer."As one of the largest, fastest-growing furniture retailers in the nation, being a new member of the NASCAR family gives us a great opportunity to reach out to our new and existing customers," said Bill McKendry, marketing director for Furniture Row® Companies.
"Beyond that, our research clearly shows that our customers and employees are NASCAR fans. So it's also a fun, exhilarating sport we can all enjoy together."Robertson is looking forward to his second chance with the NASCAR Busch Series. In his first appearance, he qualified 19th, ahead of drivers such as Dale Jarrett, Terry Labonte and Michael Waltrip. In his first race, he quickly headed to the front of the pack and led a lap before mechanical problems took him out of the race. “I’m excited about the opportunity to compete in the NASCAR Busch Series on a full-time basis,” said Robertson. “Furniture Row® has been a great sponsor so far, and we’ve been given the support and green light to accomplish our mission of winning races.”Robertson is coming to the NASCAR Busch Series after back-to-back NASCAR Northwest Regional Championships in 2003 and 2004. His 2004 race season included 10 victories and 15 top five finishes, which led to his being recognized as the “Oval Track Driver of the Year” for the second consecutive year by the region’s sportswriters. He has 174 career victories in 484 starts and has finished in the top five 355 times.“I believe Jerry is going to surprise a lot of people out on the track. He’s a talented and exciting driver to watch,” said Garone, crew chief for the No. 78 Furniture Row® Monte Carlo.
“Jerry was the only driver ever in his region to win a Pepsi Challenge, where you start at the back of the field and have to race to victory, and he did it twice. That’s the kind of talent and drive that’s going to play well with the NASCAR fans this weekend in Nashville and throughout the season.”Garone is no stranger to racing or NASCAR. The 44-year-old crew chief spent the 2004 NASCAR season working as the director of competition for Michael Waltrip. Prior to that he spent three years with NASCAR, initially building, staffing and running the NASCAR Research and Development Center in Hickory, North Carolina, and then as NASCAR’s director of officiating. From 1998 through 2001 he worked for PPI Motorsports as a program manager and then a crew chief for the team that included the No. 32 Tide Ford and the No. 96 McDonald’s Ford.Based in Denver, Colorado., Furniture Row Racing is the NASCAR Busch Series newest team, formed and sponsored by Furniture Row® Companies. The team, its driver and crew chief are all natives and residents of the Denver area.Furniture Row® Companies is the fourth largest family-owned specialty home furnishings and bedding retailer. The company is comprised of five specialty furniture store brands including: Oak Express®, Sofa Mart®, Bedroom Expressions®, Denver Mattress® Company and Furniture Row® Outlets. Furniture Row® operates more than 250 stores nationwide, the company is among the “Top 15” national furniture retailers.
# # #Editor’s Note:
Digital photos of the No. 78 Chevy Monte Carlo, driver Jerry Robertson and crew chief Joe Garone are available.