ROUSH Performance Daytona Race Preview
DAYTONA BEACH, Jan. 28, 2011: After a solid 2010 GRAND-AM Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge season, Jack Roush Jr., and Billy Johnson are back in action with sights set on the 2011 championship, but this time they will be piloting a brand new No. 61 Ford BOSS 302R Mustang. The ROUSH Performance team will again add a second car to the stable with drivers Roly Falgueras and new talent Shelby Blackstock who will share the No. 51 Ford Mustang.
The ROUSH Performance team had an impressive 2010 season finishing in the top five in nine out of 10 races, with six podium finishes and two wins. The team fell just eight points shy of the championship while acquiring the most driver and team laps led, and winning in Homestead; marking team owner Jack Roush Sr.’s 400th victory in racing.
“The 2010 season was a great year for us,” says Johnson. “There have been a lot of changes in the off season with a new crew chief, Jeff Campey, and most notably our new BOSS 302R. We learned a lot in both the Homestead and Daytona tests about the car. It’s quick but we have been working hard to make it last over the long haul like our old FR500C and we are preparing to come to Daytona ready for action.”
In 2009 Jack Roush Jr., finished fifth in the driver points. In 2010 he finished third in points with co-driver Billy Johnson.
“If we keep this yearly improvement, we should attain our goals for 2011,” said Roush Jr.
Joining the team and driving the No.51 ROUSH Performance Mustang is Puerto Rican Roly Falgueras and young gun Shelby Blackstock. Falgueras is returning to Grand-Am GS action after a brief hiatus racing GT cars in South America. This will be Blackstock’s first Grand-Am start, but after showing speed in both the Skip Barber series and Mustang Challenge cars, as well as a solid performance in the 25 Hours of Thunderhill, the up and coming star is surely someone to keep an eye on.
“I’ve kept track of Shelby for a year now and am looking forward to working with him and seeing what the kid can do,” said team manager Brad Francis. “Roly has been doing this for a while now and is a solid addition to the team.”
“I am very excited to compete in my first Grand-Am race,” said Blackstock. “To be driving for such an historic team like Roush is quite a privilege.”
While new to the team, Campey is not new to the game. Having years of experience as a crew chief under his belt ranging from ARCA to NASCAR, he is a great addition to the No.61 program. Combining Campey with Francis makes for a strong combination with decades of experience.
“I love sports car racing and it’s in my blood,” said Campey. “In fact I first started working for the Roush organization in IMSA before moving over to NASCAR years later. The team is already proven winners and we have an outstanding driver lineup with Jack Roush Jr., and Billy Johnson. It’s also an honor to be able to work hand in hand with Brad Francis. We also have a great crew who have been working very hard in the off season preparing our new BOSS 302R and I hope to contribute to this effort to make everyone’s hard work into a year-end championship.”