The Associated Press reports Robby Gordon Motorsports has partnered with Gillett Evernham Motorsports Friday, Feb. 1. The partnership will give Gordon Motorsports technical, manufacturing and marketing support. As part of the agreement RGM will switch from Ford vehicles to Dodge manufactured vehicles. The team will also use GEM-produced engines.
Gordon suffered a major hit financially when the Dakar Rally was canceled last month due to threats of terrorism. He built two cars for the event and invested more than $1 million in each. Gordon estimated his losses at approximately $4.5 million and was upset with organizers because they didn't at least run a portion of the 16-day race.
Gordon made the switch from Chevrolet to Ford prior to last season. As the only owner and driver of a single-car team, he managed to finish 28th in points, highest among all single-car teams. Robby Gordon Motorsports is expected to be a satellite of GEM, joining a lineup of drivers that includes Patrick Carpentier, Kasey Kahne and Elliott Sadler.
Ford, which Gordon leaves, hasn't made any significant improvements heading into this season; it's the only manufacturer without a new engine heading into this season. That is believed to put teams using Ford at a significant disadvantage. Dodge didn't fare as well as Ford did last season, managing just three wins, compared to seven for Ford. However, Dodge is expected to have a new engine on the track sometime this summer, and that should help its teams begin to get around the curve.
The alliance will allow Gordon to use the resources at GEM, which include help for finding sponsors, technical assistance and access to GEM engines. Gordon, who believed that it would take a considerable amount of time to recover from the setback, can now look past the Dakar Rally.
It's not out of the question for Gordon to improve on his 2007 finish, considering the support he will get with the partnership. The alignment should give Gordon a slight boost in fantasy, although he should remain no better than a No. 3 driver.
About Richard Garcia
Garcia served as a managing editor for KFFL. Prior to his time with KFFL, Richard worked in managerial roles with both Frito-Lay Inc. and UPS. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in public relations from California State Polytechnic University-Pomona and fulfilled his internship requirements with the Los Angeles Kings Hockey organization in 2001.
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