Emerling-Gase Motorsports is excited to welcome back veteran Japanese racer Akinori Ogata! Ogata will drive the #53 SHINANO PNEUMATIC TOOL Chevrolet Camaro at Martinsville Speedway for the Dead on Tools 250, on Saturday October 28th, at 3:30pm ET. The race will be broadcast on the USA Network and streaming on the NBC Sports App. The car will also sport a 20th anniversary sticker to commemorate the 20 years Akinori has been racing in the US after moving from Japan to pursue his dreams of racing in NASCAR. Ogata stated
“This paint scheme has a little 20th anniversary logo on it. That logo means that I have been racing in the United States for 20 years since 2003. 20 years later today and I haven’t given up. I’m still working hard doing NASCAR racing and I’m enjoying living in North Carolina. So, I just put this logo on to mark this milestone. It is small and looks not so special, but it means a lot. because when I came to North Carolina in 2003, I had nothing here, no family, and of course no friends. but today I have many supporters here and I am still here to race. I’m still looking for more opportunities to race in NASCAR but I am really looking forward to racing in the NASCAR Xfinity Series at Martinsville Speedway.” Owner Joey Gase stated regarding the partnership:“We are excited to have Akinori behind the wheel at Martinsville, his journey inspires us all and he is a great short track driver”
This will be Akinori’s second time driving for Emerling-Gase Motorsports as he ran the #53 at Atlanta where he finished a respectable 29th. He also has experience in the Xfinity series at Martinsville where he scored a 26th place finish in 2021!