Ganassi waiting on Montoya

September 13th, 2006  
Team Infidel

Topic: Ganassi waiting on Montoya

Chip Ganassi Racing officials are still waiting anxiously for Juan Pablo Montoya to get in one of their race cars, according to this week's NASCAR Scene. Montoya still has not gotten out of his Formula One contract. He was replaced after announcing in July that he will drive the #42 Ganassi Dodge in Nextel Cup Series beginning next season but is not allowed to even test a Cup car until the F1 season ends Oct. 22. Once he is allowed to test, Montoya could possibly race in Busch and Nextel Cup before the 2006 season ends, Ganassi Managing Director John Fernandez said Sept. 9. After the F1 season ends, there are four race weekends where Montoya could race: Atlanta (Cup) and Memphis (Busch) Oct. 28-29; Texas Nov. 4-5; Phoenix Nov. 11-12; and Homestead Nov. 18-19. If Montoya were to become available earlier, Fernandez said he would entertain running him in ARCA races Oct. 6 at Talladega and Oct. 15 at Iowa Speedway. Which races Montoya will do depends on how he feels during the tests. "We want to make sure that he's ready, so we want to make sure that he progresses at the rate he wants to progress at," Fernandez said. "He's a veteran driver, and he will tell us when he is ready to step up from ARCA to Busch and Busch to Cup." Fernandez said pulling Casey Mears out of the #42 car early for Montoya is unlikely. Mears is headed to [#25] Hendrick Motorsports next year. "We would probably run a fourth team," Fernandez said. "Casey has done a great job for us. We're hoping to get him a win before he leaves."(

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