Chip Ganassi Racing With Felix Sabates Set For 2001

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Chip Ganassi’s buyout of 80 percent of Team SABCO will be made official Friday night at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, where Felix Sabates and Ganassi will conduct a press conference at 6:30 p.m. ET.

Although Ganassi’s buyout of the NASCAR Winston Cup team is old news, RacingOne.com has learned that the team’s name will be changed to “Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates” and that the team will use Dodge Intrepids in 2001.

Sabates will continue to be a minority owner in the team and continue to contribute to the team’s business operations. Ganassi’s takeover will be complete Jan. 1, but until then he will help manage the team for the remainder of the 2000 NASCAR Winston Cup season. SABCO's Busch Series teams will remain under Sabates’ leadership.

Thursday during qualifying for the Brickyard 400, Ganassi was calling the shots for SABCO drivers Sterling Marlin and Ted Musgrave. Sabates was there, too, but said that Ganassi is "the boss now."

Also, RacingOne.com has been told that Ganassi’s team "features drivers Sterling Marlin and Ted Musgrave." That may mean that Musgrave will continue to drive the No. 01 car in 2001 that was formerly driven by the late Kenny Irwin.

The team is headquartered in Mooresville, N.C.

Team SABCO’s switch to Dodge from Chevrolet brings Dodge’s official contingent in Winston Cup to five cars. Others are expected to join Dodge before the 2001 season begins.

Ganassi is one of the most successful owners in the CART FedEx Championship Series. His drivers have won that series’ title four times, and Ganassi won the Indy 500 in May with Juan Montoya behind the wheel of and Indy Racing Northern Light Series car.

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