He'll get that at six further outings at Richmond, Dover, Kansas, Texas, Phoenix and Homestead-Miami this year. If those first outings are successful, Pastrana is expected to drive 20 races in the 2012 season under a three-year contract to drive the #99 with business partner Michael Waltrip's team.
Pastrana's Nationwide preparations did hit a slight bump when it was announced Monday that Michael Waltrip Racing's executive vice-president of operations, Cal Wells, was to abruptly leave the company in the run-up to the Indianapolis weekend.
"We want to thank Cal for his strong contribution to getting Michael Waltrip Racing to where it is today. We wish him the very best in his future endeavors," team co-owners Rob Kauffman and Michael Waltrip said in a very curt press release. "We plan to go forward now with the solid management team that is in place, and bring MWR to the next level." The departure was a mutual agreement, they insisted.
Wells was in charge of day-to-day operations for MWR's three Cup teams as well as for the #99 that Pastrana will be driving on Saturday at Lucas Oil Raceway, still better known by its old name of Indianapolis Raceway Park. Wells had been with the team since 2007, but this year the team's drivers Martin Truex Jr and David Reutimann are outside the top 20 in the Cup points and have no victories in 2011. The team also recently lost their director of vehicle design Mike Coughlan, who decided to leave to join the Williams F1 team.
Pastrana also confirmed at the weekend that he was one of the motor racing stars so far to have put in an application for the IndyCar World Championships
at Las Vegas in an attempt to scoop the $5 million prize for any non-series regular who can win the race.