Thursday, March 19, 2015

Canada's Steve Arpin Joins New Chip Ganassi-Owned Red Bull Global Rallycross Team

Photo Credit: Geoff Burke/Getty Images for NASCAR

Almost every time Chip Ganassi enters a new form of racing, the Chicago businessman and former driver has a given tendency of spending time in victory lane. Amassing victories and championships in the Verizon IndyCar Series as well as sports car racing, Chip Ganassi Racing has also won several NASCAR race in the Sprint Cup Series and the tour currently known as the Xfinity Series. March 18th, the habitually winning team has announced entrance into Red Bull Global Rallycross. Interested in the younger crowd attracted through the sport, team owner Chip Ganassi speak highly of Red Bull Global Rallycross' existence. “As a fan of motorsports I’m particularly interested in the GRC cars, their horsepower levels and the absence of traction control but make no mistake about it, we are in this series to win – both on and off the race track. Also, GRC has proven to be a very innovative and fresh take on today’s motorsport product." said Ganassi. Chip Ganassi is not going to be the first IndyCar team diversifying into Global Rallycross. Last season, Andretti Autosport launched their team campaigning Volkswagen vehicles that included a 560-horsepower Beetle.

For 2015, Chip Ganassi in partnership with energy service and construction company Loenbro will field race entries for seven-time Summer X Games medalist Brian Deegan as well as for Canadian native Steve Arpin. Operating from the same facility as Chip Ganassi Racing's NASCAR teams, the new rallycross organization will compete using Ford Fiesta ST race cars. Brian Deegan will run seven races with the #38 RockStar Energy Drink-sponsored vehicle. Having won a Global Rallycross event in 2011, Deegan's background also consist of demonstrated mastery on two wheels. One of his more recent successes has been winning Pro 2 category title in the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series (Deegan's sixth overall championship in that series).

The 2015 Red Bull Global Rallycross championship will be Steve Arpin's third season in the high-flying series. Arpin is set to run a full 12-race 2015 season with a #00 Ford Fiesta ST wearing ENEOS sponsorship. Steve Arpin's racing career surged in his teens as a snowmobile rider earning the Eagle River World Championship title along with factory-backing from Polaris. Arpin moved from snowmobiles to race cars in the late 1990s starting on dirt tracks and eventually transitioned to paved ovals. The first time the Canadian from Fort Frances, Ontario attracted widespread attention was in 2009 when he won two races in the ARCA Racing Series driving for Venturini Motorsports. Steve Arpin's sights were for NASCAR five years ago when JR Motorsports (a team co-owned by Dale Earnhardt Jr.) fielded him in several Nationwide Series. Despite some credible runs in the Nationwide Series and Camping World Truck Series that included a pole in the latter division at Chicagoland Speedway, Arpin's career path was altered as he signed on to run the Global Rallycross in 2013.

With great enthusiasm, Arpin described his 2015 season plans saying, “I couldn’t be more thrilled to be a part of such an established team like Chip Ganassi Racing entering GRC with the support of Loenbro and partnership with ENEOS. For me, being a race car driver my whole life, this is the opportunity of a lifetime and one that any driver would dream of."

The opening event for the 2015 Red Bull Global Rallycross season is scheduled for May 31st in Florida. Along with 2015 Red Bull Global Rallycross, both Chip Ganassi Racing drivers will also compete in the Summer X Games to be held on June 4th to 7th at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas.

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