MOORESVILLE, N.C. (May 7, 2010) – Rising talent J.R. Fitzpatrick was named driver of the JR Motorsports No. 7 Chevrolet for three road-course events in NASCAR’s Nationwide Series, co-owner and general manager Kelley Earnhardt announced today. Schick Canada will serve as primary sponsor for Fitzpatrick’s three starts at Road America on June 19th, Watkins Glen International on Aug. 7th and Circuit Gilles Villeneuve on Aug. 29th.
"J.R. is a talented young driver, and we look forward to giving him the chance to drive some upcoming races for JR Motorsports," Kelley Earnhardt said. "With Schick Canada sponsoring his three races, this gives J.R. the chance to showcase his abilities. We are committed to giving young drivers the chance to prove themselves in this No. 7 Chevrolet, and work with a proven crew chief in Tony Eury Jr. J.R. Fitzpatrick is someone we’ve had our eye on, and the timing is right to give him a shot."
A native of Cambridge Ontario, Canada, Fitzpatrick has four starts in the Nationwide Series – all at road courses – with a career-best finish of 18th at Watkins Glen in 2009. The 21-year-old also has 13 starts in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and holds one top-five finish at Daytona International Speedway.
"This is a great opportunity for me, and I’m excited to drive the No. 7 Schick Canada Chevrolet," said Fitzpatrick. "As a driver, surrounding yourself with good people and good equipment is all you can really ask for, and we’ve got that with JRM. Schick Canada has been a wonderful sponsor of mine for some time, and I’m thankful to them for making this possible."
In 2008, Fitzpatrick leveraged his one win and five podium finishes to become the youngest ever Canadian Association for Stock Car Auto Racing National Champion at the age of 18. Two years prior, he became the youngest winner in CASCAR Super Series history. He stormed through the Canadian Tire Series earning four wins, 12 top-five and 16 top-10 finishes with five poles in 29 career starts. Fitzpatrick retains the additional distinction of being the Canadian Tire Series Most Popular Driver in 2007.
"Fitzpatrick’s addition to JR Motorsports, a team with an amazing winning tradition, is a fantastic way to build on his breakthrough 2009 season," said Erik Rahner, Marketing Director, Schick Canada. "Schick is proud to continue its association with high performers like Fitzpatrick, and the team at JR Motorsports. We look forward to an great schedule of events in 2010, including the Nationwide Series race in Montreal."
Fitzpatrick is the fifth driver to pilot the No. 7 Chevrolet this season. He joins Steve Arpin, Landon Cassill, Danica Patrick and Scott Wimmer as drivers of the No. 7 in 2010. Wimmer secured the team’s best results with consecutive top-10 finishes at Bristol Motor Speedway and Nashville Superspeedway, leading 39 total laps.
Patrick will return for 10 more races beginning at New Hampshire Motor Speedway later this year.