Jerry Nadeau loves racing, whether on the track, on a video game or behind the desk as a team owner. Next year, he'll be busy behind the wheel of the No. 25 UAW-Delphi Chevrolet for Hendrick Motorsports, but away from the cockpit, he hopes to field the No. 28 USAC Silver Bullet Series team for 2001 USAC Western Sprint Car Series Champion Tony Hunt.

"I'm very happy for Tony," Nadeau said. "This is a well-deserved championship for him. He's done a super job in the USAC Western Sprint Series and I'm looking forward to giving him an opportunity to run the USAC Silver Bullet Series next year, and maybe even in a few USAC Sprint Car races, too.

"Right now, we're building a brand new shop in Mooresville for Tony, and we're working to get our sponsors lined up so we can run the whole series," Nadeau continued. "But we are definitely hoping to run all of the asphalt races in the Silver Bullet Series next year."

Open-wheel racing is nothing new to Nadeau, who has been racing since he was four years old in everything from go-carts to Formula racers in Europe to NASCAR stock cars. This season was his fourth full year in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series and his second with Hendrick Motorsports. He finished 17th in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series point standings with four top-five finishes and 10 top-10 finishes.

With his USAC team, Nadeau hopes to give back a little of the help others have given him during his 27 year racing career.

"I'm doing this as a stepping stone for young drivers who are looking for opportunities to move up in racing," Nadeau explained. "I know what it is like to want to race, but not have the funding and opportunities to be able to. This is my way to help pay back what everybody has done to help my career. After Tony is in the car for a season, hopefully he'll be able to move up to the next level and we can put another young driver behind the wheel. I hope it will be like a racing school where we can keep giving young, talented drivers a chance."

Hunt captured the 2001 USAC Western Sprint Car Series championship with three victories, 12 top-five finishes and 15 top-10 finishes. He also received the Hard Charger Award, which is presented to the driver in each USAC series who passes the most cars throughout the year. Hunt is the all-time leading winner in the USAC Western Sprint Series with 10 feature wins, and is also the all-time leader in number of pole starting positions with 14 first-place starts in the last four years.

"This year was excellent for us, not only statistically but with being able to consistently run up front," said Hunt, whose grandfather, Joe Hunt, founded Hunt Magneto, a pioneer in the speed equipment business. "Jerry and I have wanted to do this for a long time and now, hopefully, this championship will create some interest as well as sponsorship opportunities to make this dream a reality.

"Everything is in place for us to do this program in 2002," Hunt explained. "A lot of the ground work as far as getting equipment and developing the race team is already done, it's really a turn-key package at this point."

In order to provide the best possible exposure for sponsors, Nadeau and Hunt will be concentrating on the televised USAC Silver Bullet Series races.

"Our ultimate goal is to run all of the pavement Silver Bullet Series races and then all of the pavement Sprint Car races," said Hunt, who was presented the Pennzoil Pace Setter Award in both 2001 and 2000 as the mid-season points leader in the Western Sprint Series. "We wanted to combine the televised races in each series to put together a 15-race package for our sponsors. But right now, our priority is competing in the paved Silver Bullet Series races."