Kligerman named backup driver for Kurt Busch at Charlotte
MAY 14, 2014 11:50a ET
Parker Kligerman, the odd man out in the recent closure of Swan Racing, has been hired by Stewart-Haas Racing to be the the backup driver for Kurt Busch in the No. 41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS NASCAR Sprint Cup Series car for the next two weekends.
Busch, who is attempting to be the fourth driver to run the Indianapolis 500-Coca-Cola 600 double, will be commuting back and forth between North Carolina and Indy during the May 16-17 NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race and the May 22-25 Coca-Cola 600 race weekends.
Kligerman, 23 has made 10 Sprint Cup starts, 51 NASCAR Nationwide Series starts, 50 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series starts and 23 ARCA Racing Series starts. He has a single Truck Series victory to his credit, earned in 2012, as well as nine ARCA wins, all in 2009.
The season began with Kligerman driving for Swan Racing in the Sprint Cup Series, but that team shut down last month, costing him his seat.
"I'm grateful for the opportunity and want to thank everyone at Stewart-Haas Racing for entrusting me with the Haas Automation Chevy," Kligerman said in a statement released by the team Wednesday morning. "For these next two weeks, my sole focus is to help the No. 41 team compete at a high level, no matter how big or small my role might be."
Indy 500 practice began May 11 and goes through May 16, with qualifying May 17 and Pole Day May 18.
The May 16 practice at Indianapolis conflicts with practice for the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race. Indy 500 qualifying on Saturday ends at 6 p.m. ET Saturday, with NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race qualifying set for 7:10 p.m.
The Indy 500 is scheduled for 12:15 p.m. on May 25, with the Coca-Cola 600 set for at 6 p.m. The 500 should be completed at about 3:30 p.m., giving Busch roughly two-and-a-half hours to get from Indianapolis Motor Speedway to Concord, N.C., before the green flag waves for the Coca-Cola 600.
If Busch doesn't make it back to Charlotte Motor Speedway on time, Kligerman will start the Coca-Cola 600. Upon Busch's arrival, Kligerman will yield the seat of the No. 41 Haas Automation Chevrolet to Busch, whereupon Busch will finish the race.
"Parker and I were teammates a few years ago when we were together at Penske and his feedback was always really good," Busch said. "Plus, we're built about the same, and that's really important as we don't want to have to adjust seats or pedal positions inside the race car. I'm confident in Parker's abilities and know that my Haas Automation Chevrolet is in good hands."
WATCH! The NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race: 7 p.m. ET Saturday, FOX Sports 1
Reminder: NASCAR Race Hub has moved to 5 p.m. ET on FOX Sports 1 effective Monday, May 12. More information: http://msn.foxsports.com/nascar/racehub