Hass Tabs Bliss

Mike Bliss went from interim driver to the full-time pilot of the Haas CNC Racing NetZero Nextel Cup Series Dodge after the veteran was named the team's driver for the 2005 season.

Bliss started the 2004 season driving for Joe Gibbs Racing's No. 20 Rockwell Automotive Busch team but was released late in the year.

He took over the Haas CNC Cup ride when the team parted company with regular driver Ward Burton. Bliss finished 10th in his first start for the team in the Southern 500 at Darlington.

"This is an opportunity, I think, that has potential," Bliss said. "I didn't want to do another ride in the Nextel Cup Series unless I really thought it had potential."

A former USAC Silver Crown Series star, Bliss spent several years in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series before moving up to the Busch and Cup circuits.

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