Steve Wallace to debut at Daytona
NASCAR Nationwide driver Steve Wallace is to make his Sprint Cup debut at Daytona in February, driving for his father's team Rusty Wallace Racing.
"Starting my first Daytona 500 is definitely going to be the most exciting day of my career - make that my life - so far," said Steve, who has four lead-lap, top-15 finishes in his Nationwide appearances at Daytona International.
Wallace will be the fourth member of his family to race the Daytona 500 - his father Rusty and uncles Mike and Kenny have all competed in the Great American Race. Previously the family was tied on three family members with the Allison, Bodine, Earnhardt and Petty families.
As well as being Steve's Sprint Cup debut as a driver, it will be his father's as a team owner in the series after RWR purchased two series Chevrolet cars - one apiece from Richard Childress Racing and Earnhardt Ganassi Racing - and converted them to Toyotas. The original plan had been for Steve Wallace to drive one of Penske's #77 cars.
Wallace will be a guaranteed starter after a deal with Roger Penske, who has a top 35 spot in the owner's standings from Sam Hornish Jr.'s 2010 campaign. Penske aren't fielding a car for Hornish at Daytona because of a lack of sponsorship. However, RWR have no firm plans to run in any further races beyond Daytona.
Former champion Elliott returns with Phoenix Racing
Bill Elliott is to drive in at least NASCAR Sprint Cup 18 races with Phoenix Racing in 2011.
Elliott will start the year at the Daytona 500, but as Phoenix Racing ended last year 39th in the owner's standings Elliott will need to qualify for the race on his own speed. Although Phoenix won the 2009 Talladega event with Brad Keselowski, the 2010 season proved difficult with a fluctuating driver line-up.
Elliott, the 1988 Cup champion and two-time Daytona 500 winner in 1985 and 1987, has 821 career starts in the series over 35 years and ranks 15th in the all-time standings with 44 wins. This season will mark his first run in a Chevrolet team.
His last full-time season was in 2003, but he has been driving a part-time schedule with Woods Brothers Racing since 2007. Elliott competed in 12 races with them in 2010, starting 40th and finishing 27th in last year's Daytona 500. His best result during the season was 15th in the final event of the year at Homestead-Miami.
Trevor Bayne to race for Wood Brothers
Elliott's former team Wood Brothers have signed 19-year-old rookie Trevor Bayne to drive their #21 in "select" events in 2011.