No. 20 pit crew Rockingham competition preview

ATLANTA (Nov. 4, 2003) - The pit crew members of the ...

No. 20 pit crew Rockingham competition preview

ATLANTA (Nov. 4, 2003) - The pit crew members of the #20 Home Depot Racing Team prepare to nab a second pit crew championship for NASCAR Winston Cup Series team owner Joe Gibbs in Saturday's Union 76 Pit Crew Competition at North Carolina Speedway in Rockingham. Gibbs, who also owns the #18 team of Winston Cup driver Bobby Labonte, watched as that outfit took home the pit crew championship in 1999.

The following is a profile of each member of The Home Depot pit crew, four of whom were members of teams that previously won the Union 76 Pit Crew Competition. Mike Lingerfelt, the #20 team's front tire changer, won the competition in 1998 as a front tire changer with the #31 team of Richard Childress Racing. Chuck White, the #20 team's jack man, won the competition in 2000 as a jack man with the #99 team of Roush Racing. Todd Foster, the #20 team's rear tire changer, also won the competition in 2000 as a rear tire changer with the #99 team. And Jerold Shires, the #20 team's tire specialist, won the competition in 1997 as a rear tire changer with Bill Elliott Racing.

Greg Zipadelli
Shop Duties: Crew Chief
Pit Stop Duties: Crew Chief

Joined Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) following the 1998 Winston Cup season...Has been with the #20 team since its inception...Currently in his fifth year as a Winston Cup crew chief with 17 wins, seven poles, 67 top-five finishes and 103 top-10 finishes...Before joining JGR, worked as the chassis specialist on the #99 Roush Racing team of Jeff Burton for the 1998 season - his first job in Winston Cup...Prior to Winston Cup career, led driver Mike McLaughlin to the 1988 NASCAR Modified Tour championship at age 20...Won five NASCAR Busch North Series races with McLaughlin between 1990 and 1993... Scored second NASCAR championship as a crew chief with driver Mike Stefanik in the Busch North Series in 1997.

Paul Alepa
Shop Duties: Pit Stop Coordinator and Strength Coach
Pit Stop Duties: None

Joined JGR on a part-time basis at the beginning of the 1999 Winston Cup season, implementing a fitness and weight lifting regimen to the #20 and #18 teams on Monday and Wednesday nights...Became full-time in January of 2001 when he was named pit stop coordinator and strength coach...Before joining JGR, served as a weight room assistant with the NFL's Carolina Panthers...First joined the Panthers in 1996 as an intern, worked pro bono for the Panthers in 1997 before becoming the weight room assistant in 1998...Served as the fitness consultant for the Top Cats, the Panthers' dance squad from 1997-2000...Graduated from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte (UNCC) with a bachelor's degree in health fitness in May of 1997...Transferred to UNCC from Arizona State University before his senior year at the behest of Coy Gibbs - Joe Gibbs' youngest son...Has been friends with Coy since seventh grade, and when Coy was a senior at Stanford, Coy talked him into moving to Charlotte...This is his first job in racing.

Mike Lingerfelt
Shop Duties: Mechanic
Pit Stop Duties: Front Tire Changer

Joined JGR following the 1998 Winston Cup season...Has been with the #20 team since its inception...Started changing front tires on the #20 car toward the end of the 1999 season...Missed majority of 2000 season rehabilitating a fractured left femur sustained in a pit road accident during the season-opening Daytona 500...Before joining JGR, worked as the front tire changer for the #31 Richard Childress Racing team of Mike Skinner in 1998 - his first job in Winston Cup...Was a member of the 1998 Union 76 Pit Crew Championship winning team...Prior to Winston Cup career, worked at Stegall Motorsports (Busch Series) with driver Shane Hall as a mechanic and tire changer in 1995...Worked for KEL Racing (Busch Series) with driver Jason Keller as a mechanic and tire changer from 1996-1997... Races a dirt modified at Riverside Speedway in Travelers Rest, S.C., whenever his schedule permits.

Tom Dean
Shop Duties: Mechanic
Pit Stop Duties: Front Tire Carrier/Pulls Tape from Grill

Joined JGR following the 1998 season...Has been with the #20 team since its inception...Before joining JGR, worked with the IROC Series from 1995-1998...The Tinton Falls, N.J.-based series was an hour and 20 minutes from the Long Valley, N.J., native's home...Prior to working with IROC, toiled at a Pontiac dealership in Flemington, N.J.

Chuck White
Shop Duties: None
Pit Stop Duties: Jack Man

Joined JGR following the 2001 season... Not a full-time employee of JGR, as White's full-time job is working for the North Carolina Department of Transportation as a civil engineer...Before joining JGR, worked as the jack man on the #99 Roush Racing team of Jeff Burton (1999-2001)...Was a member of the 2000 Union 76 Pit Crew Championship winning team...Prior to working with Roush, was the jack man with the now defunct #46 Team SABCO operation with drivers Wally Dallenbach and Jeff Green (1997-1998)...Team SABCO was White's first job in Winston Cup, as then crew chief Brad Noffsinger initially recruited White from a Kannapolis, N.C., gym to carry tires, but when the team's jack man quit, White was tabbed for the position.

Todd Foster
Shop Duties: Mechanic
Pit Stop Duties: Rear Tire Changer

Joined JGR following 2001 season...Began work at JGR as the front tire changer for the #18 team of Bobby Labonte, but was moved to the #20 team in May of 2002 to serve as the team's rear tire changer...Before joining JGR, worked as the rear tire changer on the #99 Roush Racing team of Jeff Burton (Aug. 2000-Dec. 2001)...Was a member of the 2000 Union 76 Pit Crew Championship winning team...Prior to working with Roush, was the rear tire changer for the Jasper Motorsports team and driver Robert Pressley (Jan. 2000-Aug. 2000)...Worked with Cale Yarborough Motorsports and driver Rick Mast in 1999 - Foster's first job in Winston Cup...Moved from Birmingham to Charlotte, N.C., in 1998 after working for Bradberry Racing, a Legacy Racing Series operation...Spent 1997 working in ARCA with Carroll Racing and driver Jimmy Kitchens...Upon graduating high school, worked with driver Stanley Smith in various Late Model, Busch Series and Winston Cup endeavors between 1989-1993...When Smith was seriously injured following an accident at Talladega (Ala.) in 1993, Foster worked for Smith's drywall company from 1993-1997.

Jay Barry
Shop Duties: None
Pit Stop Duties: Rear Tire Carrier

Joined JGR following the 1999 season...Before joining JGR, worked as a mechanic and tire changer on the #26 Roush Racing team of Johnny Benson (Winston Cup) and the #60 Roush Racing team of Mark Martin (Busch Series) throughout the 1999 season...Prior to working with Roush, spent two years with Akins/Sutton Motorsports and driver Elton Sawyer (Busch Series)...Not a full-time employee of JGR, as Barry owns his own company - AirBorn Coatings - a maker of industrial coatings since 1994 with over 120 employees.

Jeff "Gooch" Patterson
Shop Duties: Motorcoach Driver
Pit Stop Duties: Gas Man

Joined JGR following the 1998 season...First began with JGR's #44 Busch Series team as second gas man and Tony Stewart's motorcoach driver...Has been with the #20 team since its inception...Before joining JGR, worked with Ranier-Walsh Racing as the transporter driver and gas man for the #20 car of Greg Sacks (Winston Cup) and the #15 car of Tony Stewart (Busch Series)...Prior to Winston Cup career, worked as a mechanic for a variety of World of Outlaws teams.

Brian "Shaggy" Larson
Shop Duties: Fabrication
Pit Stop Duties: Catch Can Man

Joined JGR midway through the 1997 season...Began working as a fabricator on the #18 car and changing front tires on the #44 car in the Busch Series...Has been with the #20 team since its inception...Has been a fabricator and tire changer for over 15 years...Before joining JGR, spent two months with the #42 Team SABCO operation in 1997 with driver Joe Nemechek before spending six months with American Equipment Racing in 1997 with driver David Green...Worked with Nemechek en route to the 1992 Busch Series title and stayed with Nemechek through the 1996 season...Worked as a mechanic and fabricator with Bobby Dotter Racing (Busch Series) from 1988-1991.

Scott "Scooter" Crowell
Shop Duties: Truck Driver
Pit Stop Duties: Second Gas Man

Joined JGR after the 1999 Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte...#20 team went on to win back-to-back races at Dover (Del.) and Michigan upon Crowell's arrival...Before joining JGR, spent five months with Mattei Motorsports and driver Michael Waltrip as a fabricator, mechanic, second truck driver and gas man...Worked with Hendrick Motorsports on the #25 team with drivers Ricky Craven and Wally Dallenbach as a truck driver and gas man from 1998-1999...Spent seven months at Petty Enterprises with driver John Andretti as a truck driver and tire specialist in 1997...Worked with Northstar Motorsports and driver Jeremy Mayfield in the Busch Series as a mechanic and part-time truck driver at the beginning of 1997...Worked with Cale Yarborough Motorsports and Mayfield as a truck driver and second gas man from 1995-1996.

Roger Purcell
Shop Duties: Engine Specialist
Pit Stop Duties: Pit Sign/Fuel Mileage

Joined JGR following the 2002 season...Before joining JGR, was an engine specialist at Penske Racing with Rusty Wallace from 1998-2002...Prior to that, worked as a fabricator and mechanic at Darrell Waltrip Motorsports from 1995-1997...Was a machinist and assembler from 1989-1994 at Automotive Specialist in Concord (N.C.), a company that built engines for short track race teams and NASCAR Busch Series teams...Was an instructor and mechanic at the Buck Baker Driving School from 1987-1988...Spent 1984-1986 at Hendrick Motorsports with drivers Geoff Bodine and Tim Richmond...Was at Stavola Brothers Racing from 1983 to the beginning of 1984 with Bobby Hillin, Jr.,...Spent 1982 at Benfield Racing with Joe Ruttman...Moved to Charlotte (N.C.) in 1981 with Mars, Inc., a Chicago-based race team that ran dirt and pavement tracks with driver Rick Newsome...Team tried to make a go of Winston Cup and Busch Series racing, but by 1982 Purcell moved back to Illinois when Mars closed its doors due to lack of sponsorship...Purcell returned to Charlotte in the fall of 1982.

Jason Shapiro
Shop Duties: Mechanic
Pit Stop Duties: Cleans Grill/Catches Right Front Tire/Pit

Joined JGR following the 1998 season...Has been with the #20 team since its inception...Was the front tire changer for the majority of the 1999 season...Before joining JGR, worked with FILMAR Racing and driver Kenny Wallace throughout the 1998 season as car chief and front tire changer...Spent 1996-1997 with Brett Bodine Racing as a mechanic and front tire changer...Prior to Winston Cup career, served as crew chief for driver Glenn Sullivan in the NASCAR Busch North Series.

Jerold Shires
Shop Duties: Mechanic
Pit Stop Duties: Pulls Front Air Hose/Tire Specialist

Joined JGR midway through the 1998 season...Has been with the #20 team since its inception...Was the rear tire changer for the #20 team during the 1999 and 2000 seasons before retiring... Had been a tire changer in Winston Cup for over 12 years...Before joining JGR, worked with Alan Kulwicki Racing from the fall of 1988 to 1991...Worked with Bahari Racing and driver Michael Waltrip from 1992-1995...Worked with Kranefuss-Hass and drivers John Andretti and Jeremy Mayfield in 1996...Worked with Bill Elliott Racing in 1997 until July of 1998...Was a member of the 1997 Union 76 Pit Crew Championship winning team...Prior to Winston Cup career, earned a degree in diesel mechanics from the Watterson Institute of Technology in Charlotte, N.C. (school has since closed).

Bill Byrne
Shop Duties: None
Pit Stop Duties: Pulls Rear Air Hose/Catches Right Rear Tire

Joined JGR following the 1999 season...Attended 30 races as a part-time road crew member in 2000...Became full-time road crew member in 2001...Commutes to all races from his home in Marne, Mich...Before joining JGR, worked with the #26 of Roush Racing and driver Johnny Benson (Winston Cup) between 1998-1999...Spent 1996-1997 with Bahari Racing and Johnny Benson (Winston Cup)...While working with Bahari Racing and Roush Racing, pulled double duty in the American Speed Association working as a mechanic and jackman on the car of Dave Sensiba...During the week, works as a construction foreman for the Kent County (Mich.) Road Commission (a.k.a. Grand Rapids, Mich., D.O.T.).

Scott Geerts
Shop Duties: Mechanic
Pit Stop Duties: Cleans Windshield/Driver's Drink

Joined JGR following the 2002 season...Before joining JGR, worked as a mechanic and front tire changer for five years at Roush Racing (#16 Cup car with Kevin Lepage from March 1998 to end of 1998; #6 Cup car with Mark Martin from 1999-2000; and #60 Busch Series car with Greg Biffle from 2001-2002)...Won the Busch Series championship with Biffle in 2002...Prior to working with Roush, served a stint at Hendrick Motorsports with the #25 team of Wally Dallenbach from November 1997 to March 1998...Was with now defunct LJ Racing with Lepage from January 1997 to November 1997 and also from January 1996 to June 1996...In between his time at LJ Racing, worked in the Busch Series with the #43 Ridling Motorsports team of Dennis Setzer from June 1996 to December 1996...After racing IMCA modifieds in his home state of Iowa during the early '90s and toiling as a plumber and heating/air conditioning repairman, moved to Charlotte (N.C.) in late 1995 where he took a job at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte (UNCC) in the maintenance department, fixing heating and air conditioning units...He would circulate his resume to area race teams during his lunch break.

Scott Diehl
Shop Duties: Chief Mechanic
Pit Stop Duties: Pit Support

Joined JGR following the 1998 season...Has been with the #20 team since its inception...Was the jack man for all of the 1999 season...Before joining JGR, worked as a mechanic and jack man on the #99 car of Roush Racing and Jeff Burton from 1996-1998...Moved with Greg Zipadelli to the #20 team...Prior to Winston Cup career, worked with D-R Racing and Tim Fedewa (Busch Series) as a mechanic from 1993-1995...Worked with Throop Motorsports in the American Speed Association with Bob Senneker and Glenn Allen, Jr. in 1992...Worked with Fedewa at D-R Racing in the ASA Series from 1989-1991.

Dave Hansen
Shop Duties: Shock Specialist
Pit Stop Duties: Pit Support

Joined JGR following the 1999 season, as he worked for Diamond Ridge Motorsports, a Busch Series team that was acquired by JGR in August 1999...Was an employee of Diamond Ridge since the beginning of 1999, where he was a mechanic and front tire changer...Prior to his tenure at Diamond Ridge, worked in the NASCAR Busch North Series for veteran driver Kelly Moore from 1996-1998...Graduated high school in 1993, whereupon he began working as a plumber and heating/air conditioning repairman...He continued that vocation while working in the Busch North Series.

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