First Generation Driver Gracin Raz to Race the 2015 NASCAR K&N Pro Series West Season
LAKE OSWEGO, Oregon (January 6, 2015).
Gracin Raz stepped in to the No. 99 NAPA Filters Toyota for the first time on August 14 for a test run with his crew led by Duane Knorr. By the end of qualifying at the NAPA Auto Parts/Toyota 150, Raz came in fifth fastest and earned the top spot for all rookies competing.
>17-year old Gracin Raz from Lake Oswego, Oregon has signed an agreement with Jefferson Pitts Racing (JPR) to race the full NASCAR K&N Pro Series West schedule where he will be led by Jeff Jefferson.
Raz, a first generation race car driver, will be one of the youngest drivers from the State of Oregon to race a K&N West Pro Series and he has no plans to slow down. “I have known since I was three years old that racing is what I want to do,” said Raz. “Mr. Jefferson invested a lot of time in me and my late model crew in 2014, and has shown faith in me and my abilities that really helps build my confidence. This is the type of opportunity you have to make count and I plan to do all that I can to exceed expectations.”
Raz caught the eye of Jefferson in 2014, who facilitated the opportunity for Raz to race for Bill McAnally Racing twice last year. In his first K&N race, Raz out qualified all rookies and is expected to be a strong contender for Rookie of the Year in 2015. “Gracin brings natural talent, adaptability, and the type of character that will enable him to go as far as he wants in racing,” said Jefferson. “I am excited to work closer with him and am confident he will achieve great results.”
Jefferson, along with Jerry Pitts, crew chief for the 2011 and 2014 NASCAR K&N Pro Series West Champion Greg Pursley, teamed up to purchase Gene Price Motorsport’s program – equipment many describe as the best in the K&N Pro Series. Between the equipment and combined knowledge of Jefferson and Pitts, JPR Racing will be one of the most powerful programs in the K&N Pro Series.
Behind Raz is a growing list of strong supporters, including new sponsor Trinity Energy out of Billings, Montana – a rapidly growing leader in equipment designed to increase the efficiency of oil production. Helping lead sponsorship activation for Raz is Nathan Durkes out of Indianapolis, Indiana. Nathan brings extensive motorsports marketing experience and wow’d NASCAR’s top promoters after helping lead a team representing the University of Norte Dame to a first place finish in the NASCAR Kinetics Marketing in Motion program. “I have really enjoyed watching Gracin mature as a race car driver over the past year and can’t wait to see what he can do with JPR,” said Durkes. “Gracin has great character and is a super marketable guy; I am thrilled to be part of his team.”
Raz will open his 2015 season with a super late model race in Tucson, Arizona the first week of February. The 2015 NASCAR K&N Pro Series West season will open March 28 at the Kern County Speedway in Bakersfield, CA.