Andretti Out At Petty Enterprises

LEVEL CROSS, N.C. - Christian Fittipaldi will drive the #43 Cheerios/Betty Crocker Dodge for most of the rest of this season, beginning with this weekend’s 400-mile race at Michigan Speedway. Petty Enterprises announced this morning Fittipaldi would replace John Andretti, who has driven for the team since 1998.

"Christian Fittipaldi has shown, every time he has gotten in a Winston Cup car, including Phoenix, Texas and Daytona, that he has the talent to drive these cars and help us get to the front," said Kyle Petty, CEO of Petty Enterprises. "We look forward to showing everyone what Christian can do week in and week out."

A driver to be determined will drive the #43 in the three races Fittipaldi drives the #44 Bugles Dodge, and his one race under the New York Yankees pinstripes colors.

"This decision was finalized this week. We then informed General Mills of what we were going to do, and we are moving forward," Petty said.

Fittipaldi, one of the top young names in Formula One and CART racing before moving to Petty Enterprises, will be starting his fourth NASCAR Winston Cup race this week. He ran in October’s race at Phoenix, as well as the season-opening Daytona 500 and April’s 500-miler at Texas Motor Speedway.

"We appreciate what John has done for us," said Richard Petty. "We had some successes, won some poles and won a race but we feel like where we are right now it’s time for a change for Petty Enterprises and for John.

"Speed and Fittipaldi go together," he continued. "He knows how to run fast, and he knows how to race fast. We feel he is going to do a great job for Petty Enterprises and for Cheerios and Betty Crocker."

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