INDIANAPOLIS -- Agreement One of the longest running sponsorships in NHRA drag racing will continue for three more years with the announcement today at the Performance Racing Industry trade show that GM Performance Parts has extended its sponsorship of Pro Stock racer Warren Johnson. Johnson, a six-time NHRA champion and the most successful Pro Stock driver in drag racing history, will carry GM Performance Parts as the primary sponsor of his Pontiac SC/T Grand Am through at least 2005.
"The 2003 season will mark the 18th consecutive year that GM Service and Parts Operations has supported Warren Johnson's championship-winning team," said Robert Triulzi, General Director, GM Accessories - GM Service and Parts Operations. "Warren began his long-term association with our organization in 1986 with sponsorship from the GM Performance Parts brand, and we are proud to continue this enduring relationship far into the future.
"This agreement between GM Performance Parts and Warren Johnson Enterprises exemplifies the teamwork and commitment that are essential for success in both motorsports and business," Triulzi added.
Johnson, 59, of Buford, Ga., has driven GM products exclusively throughout his 27-year professional career. He introduced GM Performance Parts - then known as "Goodwrench Performance Parts" - to NHRA drag racing in 1986.
"GM Performance Parts has played an essential role in the success of my racing business," said Johnson. "The technical and financial resources that GM Performance Parts brings to our program enable us to compete successfully in the most competitive category in motorsports. In turn, the parts that we develop in Pro Stock become available to racers and performance enthusiasts through GM Performance Parts authorized dealers."
Johnson was instrumental in the design and development of GM's purpose-built Drag Race Competition Engine (DRCE), which has become the cornerstone of GM's Pro Stock engine program. Johnson is now working with GM Racing engineers on the next-generation DRCE.
"I know that I can count on GM Performance Parts to produce the components we need to win in this intensely competitive category," said Johnson, who was voted "Engine Builder of the Year" on the Car Craft All-Star Drag Racing Team in 2001 and 2002.
"Warren's hands-on approach and his engineering insights directly benefit GM Performance Parts customers," said Bill Fitzgerald, manager of GM Performance Parts and Vehicle Care. "His race car is not only the flagship of GM SPO's marketing program in NHRA drag racing, but also a high-speed laboratory that GM engineers use to test and develop components. Just as Warren represents the best in NHRA drag racing, GM Performance Parts represents the best in high-performance engines and parts in the industry."
Johnson is known as the "Professor of Pro Stock" for his analytical approach to racing. He stands at the head of the Pro Stock class in every performance statistic: career victories (88), final rounds (138), No. 1 qualifiers (127), low elapsed times (129), and top speeds (196).
GM Performance Parts is part of General Motors Service and Parts Operations (SPO). SPO, headquartered in Grand Blanc, Mich., markets automotive replacement parts and accessories worldwide under the GM and ACDelco brand names. For more information, visit the GM Goodwrench web site at gmgoodwrench.com.
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