AJ to NASCAR, Fired by Forsythe, Buddy Rice in for Mexico City

Wheeling, Illinois – October 27th, 2006 - Forsythe Championship Racing announced today that Buddy Rice will replace A.J. Allmendinger for the last round of the 2006 Champ Car World Series in Mexico City, November 10-12th. 

Allmendinger joined the Forsythe Team for the Champ Car Grand Prix of Portland on June 18th and won his first career Champ Car Victory.  Ever since, Forsythe and Allmendinger enjoyed a great deal of success together; in 9 starts with the Team Allmendinger won 5 races, 1 Pole Position, started on the front row 5 times, and secured 2nd place in the 2006 Champ Car World Series Championship.  After the announcement that the young American will compete in NASCAR with Toyota next year, it has been agreed that it is in the best interest of both parties to part ways. 

Buddy Rice has also had his share of success in the open-wheel racing world.  Rice began his career in Formula 2000 where in 1997 he captured his first victory and won the Valvoline Team USA Scholarship.  He moved up to the Champ Car Atlantic Championship where he competed from 1998 to 2000 winning the prestigious Gilles Villeneuve Memorial Award on his rookie year, placing 5th in the overall standings on his sophomore year, and capturing the Championship on his last year in Champ Car’s development series.  The Arizona native continued climbing the ladder and went on to win the 88th running of the Indianapolis 500 from the pole in 2004.  Rice will join the Forsythe Team for the Gran Premio Telmex Presented by Banamex and will drive the #7 INDECK Ford in his first career Champ Car World Series start.

"I would like to thank Jerry Forsythe and the whole Forsythe Team for the opportunity that they gave me.  The last few months of my life have been incredible and I’ve really enjoyed my time with the Team, we had great success and I’ve made great friends," said Allmendinger. "I am starting a new chapter in my life and I’d like to wish the best of luck to the Team and to Buddy and hope they win in Mexico." A.J. will make his first Nextel Cup start this weeked in Atlanta.

"I’m very excited! It was looking like being a very long off season so I can’t wait to be back in a car and driving again," said Rice who's IRL season ended in September. "I’m also super excited about going back to road racing; it’s going to take some adapting specially since I haven’t driven a Champ Car in years and the turbos take some getting used to, but I am confident that we’ll be quick right out of the box."