Team Penske announced on Tuesday morning that Alex Tagliani will compete in a pair of NASCAR Nationwide Series races this coming season. Tagliani will run the No. 22 Discount Tire Ford at Road America on June 21st, followed by Mid-Ohio on August 16th.
“This is a great opportunity to get back in a NASCAR Nationwide Series (NNS) car and to do it for one of the best teams in the series and one of the greatest owners the sport has ever seen – Roger Penske,” the Quebec native commented. “I’ve been able to run for ‘The Captain’ one other time in my career in a stock car and we were so close to winning the race. This gives me two great chances to get my first Nationwide Series win. And with the team winning both of these races last year, I guess you could say the pressure is on me to get the job done this season.”
It’ll mark Tagliani’s fifth and sixth starts in the Nationwide Series as Tagliani made four starts between 2009 and 2012, including a second place finish at Montreal in 2011.
Over the course of his career, Tagliani has ran multiple disciplines of racing and that won’t change in 2014.
With 70 Verizon IndyCar starts in the bank, Tagliani will be running the Indinapolis 500 this summer for Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing. He won the pole for the event in 2011 while driving for Sam Schmidt.
He will also be running the full NASCAR Canadian Tire Series season this year – with the exception of the season opener. Taglani has made 16 starts previously in the series, with a win in Edmonton in 2008.
“I have known Alex for a long time and he has driven for our team before, so he was the ideal choice to race the Discount Tire Ford for these upcoming road course events,” Roger Penske said. “Alex is a proven winner in both open-wheel and stock car competition. He has competed for wins each of the last two times he has raced in the Nationwide Series, including with Team Penske back in 2011. I think he, (crew chief) Jeremy Bullins and the No. 22 Discount Tire Ford team will be tough to beat at both Road America and Mid-Ohio this season.”
Last year, the combination of A.J. Allmendinger, Brad Keselowski, Joey Logano and Ryan Blaney proved to be successful last year in the No. 22 Ford as the four drivers won a combined twelve races last season to win the owner’s championship. Logano, Keselowski and Blaney have each taken turns behind the wheel this year, with Keselowski scoring a victory at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.