JTG Daugherty Racing Continuing to Make Progress Entering Kansas Speedway with Labonte and No. 47 Reese Towpower & Highland Toyota Camry
KANSAS CITY, Kan. (April 18, 2012) – – JTG Daugherty Racing was formed in 1995 as a thriving NASCAR Nationwide Series operation winning their first race the very next season with driver Jeff Fuller.
The team also dabbled in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, but from the start co-owner Tad Geschickter’s vision was to compete on the NASCAR Sprint Series level. In 2009, the single-car operation ventured into unchartered waters with Australian driver Marcos Ambrose and Geschickter’s lifelong goal came to fruition.
Today, 2000 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion leads the team into race number eight of the 2012 season at Kansas Speedway for the STP 400 behind the wheel of the No. 47 Reese Towpower & Highland Toyota Camry. It’s been a long road with a lot of changes and sacrifices, but Geschickter feels good about the team’s journey.
“I believe we are ahead of schedule this season,” said Geschickter, who owns the team along with Brad Daugherty and Jodi Geschickter. “There have been some hiccups on fuel mileage with the new fuel injection system that were beyond our control. For those things within our control, we have exceeded our expectations. With the offseason move into our Harrisburg shop and car re-designs, we knew it would be May before our entire new package – chassis, aero, etc. – was totally in place. Everyone has worked hard to move that timeline up. With proper fuel mileage in the first seven weeks, we would be looking at all top-20 finishes, which would feel better to everyone. I expect our results to continually improve as the season progresses.”
This weekend Reese Towpower, the number one brand in hitches, towing and towing accessory products, sponsors Bobby Labonte and JTG Daugherty Racing’s No. 47 Toyota Camry in the 267-lap event.
“We are glad to have Reese Towpower back with us for the Kansas Race,” Geschickter said. “They are one of our newest sponsors and have already become great partners in the 14 months we have been together. O’Reilly Auto Parts also came on board and created a great Reese Towing promotion for us. They will be on the quarter panels of the car this weekend.”
In 12 appearances at Kansas Speedway, Labonte’s best start is fourth (10/5/03) and his best finish is 16th (10/10/04). During the Hollywood Casino 400 at the 1.5-mile tri-oval last fall, Labonte finished 30th and Jimmie Johnson was the race winner.
“We’ve been making progress like Tad said,” Labonte said. “We knew that it would take time and a lot of hard work. We have Kansas before us and we want a solid finish. It’s a place I like racing because it’s so fan-friendly and the racing is really good. There are multiple grooves to move around. I’m looking forward to it and happy to have Reese Towpower, Highland and O’Reilly on our Toyota Camry this weekend.”
Bobby Labonte Kansas Appearances:
When: Thursday, April 19th Autographs: 4:30 to 5:30 Location: Walmart 13600 S. Alden Street Olathe, KS 66062
When: Saturday April 21st Event time: 2-4 p.m. Autographs: 2:30-3:30 p.m. Location: O’Reilly Auto Parts 6136 Nieman Road Shawnee, KS 66203 This week the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series visits Kansas Speedway. Live coverage of the STP 400 on FOX begins at 12:30 p.m. ET.