An Outlaws Dream Team?

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Tony Stewart is at it again.

Stewart announced Wednesday that he is moving into the ownership realm in yet another series, this time the Pennzoil World of Outlaws. Stewart's WoO team brings the Winston Cup star into his third major series as an owner. He already is part owner of a USAC Silver Crown car and an Indy Racing Northern Light Series car.

With Danny Lasoski behind the wheel of his car, Stewart anticipates a title in the future.

"This is one of the most exciting projects I have undertaken in racing," said Stewart, a five-time winner in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series this season. "In my opinion, Danny Lasoski is a great sprint car driver with the talent and experience necessary to lead us to the World of Outlaws championship."

For Lasoski, a championship would cap an already-stellar Outlaws career. Since 1995, he has never finished out of the top five in the point standings; he has won 33 A features; he has won the prestigious Knoxville Nationals; and he was voted the most improved Outlaws driver for the 1998 season.

"This new team is the opportunity of a lifetime for me," the 41-year-old Dover, Mo., native said. "When Tony and I met several years ago, little did either of us know our paths would lead us to building a team together. I have always been blessed throughout my racing career to have the support of great people and have enjoyed great success as a result, but Tony is giving me the ability to go to the head of the class.

"Together we have put together a winning combination with Jimmy Carr as the crew chief."

And, when Lasoski says "we," he means it.

Stewart and Lasoski are friends off the track, and the Higginsville, Mo.-based team is a product of their dedication to racing and cooperation.

"We share a passion for sprint car racing and for winning," said Stewart, who’s done a lot of both. "More importantly, we have a friendship and trust that will serve as a strong foundation on which to build this team.

"It is the perfect situation for me as a team owner."

Lasoski will not only serves as driver of the team, but also as general manager. With Stewart tending to so many other obligations, Lasoski’s managerial involvement gives the team continuity when Stewart’s not around.

"Every decision regarding the building of this team has been made jointly by Danny and I," Stewart said. "It is critical to our success that he has absolute confidence in his crew and equipment when we hit the circuit next season."

Forget about next year, Lasoski’s already confident the team will make its presence known.

"I want to win the Knoxville Nationals again," he said. "And I want to win the World of Outlaws championship. I know winning it once won’t be enough once we get the first one under our belt. But with our new team, it is a goal I believe is truly attainable."

Indiana-based JD Byrider will sponsor the No. 20 Outlaws car with Hamm America serving as a primary associate sponsor.

"We’re definitely pleased and proud to take our relationship with Tony Stewart to a higher level," said Jim England vice president of marketing and advertising for JD Byrider. "His talent and accomplishments have given him a very credible position with a segment of our customer base. With the addition of Danny Lasoski and the World of Outlaws, we look forward to reaching even more of our market on a very local level."

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