RAB Racing with Brack Maggard announced today that they will attempt to make their NASCAR Sprint Cup Series debut in the 54th-annual Daytona 500 on Feb. 26, with driver Kenny Wallace behind the wheel of their No. 09 American Ethanol Toyota Camry.
“Corn farmers are excited to continue our relationship with RAB Racing and Kenny Wallace in 2012,” said Garry Niemeyer, National Corn Growers Association president. “Kenny is a fan favorite and one of the most visible drivers in the sport. He has been an outspoken supporter of ethanol and Sunoco Green E15. He comes from the Midwest, so he truly appreciates the important role corn farmers play in providing consumers with a fuel that is made in America and provides jobs here at home.”
“American Ethanol is excited to enter the racing season with Kenny Wallace behind the wheel as a spokesman for our industry,” said Tom Buis, CEO of Growth Energy. “He has a great connection with the fans and he can help tell the story of how using ethanol in our fuel creates jobs, fosters energy security and cleans the air.”
With Wallace behind the wheel of their NASCAR Nationwide Series Toyota in 2011, the No. 09 team finished seventh in the NASCAR Nationwide Series driver championship standings, a career-best for the Concord, N.C.-based team, after posting 11 top-10 finishes.
“I find myself and our team in a position I certainly did not anticipate, announcing that we are going to attempt to make our Sprint Cup Series debut in the 2012 Daytona 500,” said Robby Benton, owner of RAB Racing with Brack Maggard. “Obviously this is where any team in NASCAR sets their goals, but for a team that’s as young as ours to have the opportunity to take the next step is very humbling, and to be doing so with Kenny Wallace makes it that much more meaningful. This will be the greatest challenge we’ve faced as a team to this point, but we’re ready for it. It’ll be interesting to see how things unfold and if we’re fortunate enough to earn a starting spot, it’ll be the culmination of a great deal of dedication and effort by everyone who has ever been a part of RAB Racing with Brack Maggard.”
Wallace will attempt to make his 11th Daytona 500 start. His last start in the Great American Race came in 2008, when he raced his way into the starting lineup via an eighth-place finish in the first Gatorade Duel.
“The Daytona 500 is the race I grew up watching every year as a kid in St. Louis. It’s a very important race to me,” said Wallace. “I take this opportunity very seriously. I want to thank everyone at RAB Racing for working so hard in preparing this American Ethanol Toyota Camry. Earning a starting spot in this year’s Daytona 500 would be a dream come true, not only for myself, but for Robby and everyone else that’s worked so hard to make this a reality. Speedweeks is my favorite time of the year, and I can’t wait to get down there in just another couple of weeks.”
The crew chief for the No. 09 American Ethanol Toyota Camry will be announced at a later date.