ATLANTA, Nov. 7, 2005 – Jamie McMurray, one of NASCAR’s fastest-rising stars, today announced that he will drive the IRWIN Industrial Tools/Sharpie Ford for Roush Racing in 2006. The announcement ends the speculation of when one of the most coveted driver’s seats in racing would be filled.
“The addition of Jamie McMurray as driver of the IRWIN/Sharpie Ford is a development that’s exciting to our employees, customers and fans,” said Eric Pinkham, director of motorsports for Newell Rubbermaid. “There’s no question that Jamie now has the right tools to achieve even greater NASCAR success and make a permanent mark on racing history.”
In making his new home in the Roush Racing camp, McMurray inherits a wealth of experience in his NASCAR Nextel Cup series teammates at Roush including Mark Martin, Matt Kenseth, Greg Biffle and Carl Edwards.
“I’m proud to come on board with IRWIN and Sharpie,” said McMurray. “There couldn’t be a better fit for me. Backed by the Roush championship tradition and the support of millions of IRWIN and Sharpie fans, we will take it to the next level in 2006. I’m ready to go.”
Born in Joplin, Mo., and a resident of Statesville, N.C., McMurray turned the racing world on its head in October 2002 at Lowe's Motor Speedway as he scored his first NASCAR Cup victory in only his second career start filling in for the injured Sterling Marlin. In the process, McMurray set a new NASCAR modern-era record by becoming the quickest driver to win a Cup race. In his true rookie season of 2003, he competed in all 36 Cup races, scoring five top-fives and 13 top-10 finishes. During his sophomore year behind the wheel, McMurray post nine top-five and 23 top-10 finishes en route to finishing 11th in points and picking up NASCAR’s $1 million bonus. So far this season, McMurray has four top-fives and 10 top-10 finishes.
“We also would like to thank Kurt Busch for helping IRWIN and Sharpie bring home an unforgettable championship in 2004,” said Pinkham. “We wish him well and are now looking forward to earning another title with Jamie at the wheel.”
IRWIN and Sharpie racing will compete in 15 races throughout the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series next year, including special Sharpie paint schemes at each event at Bristol Motor Speedway. The brands’ sponsorship will feature interactive marketing at tracks, retail appearances, advertising and consumer and customer promotions.
About IRWIN Industrial Tools
IRWIN Industrial Tools manufactures and distributes professional-grade hand tools and power tool accessories worldwide for trade professionals who demand superior performance and durability on the job. IRWIN Industrial Tools' brand portfolio features user-preferred category leaders such as BLUE BLADE® bi-metal utility blades, VISE-GRIP® locking tools, MARATHON® saw blades, QUICK-GRIP® clamping tools, SPEEDBOR® wood-boring drill bits, STRAIT-LINE® marking tools, Unibit® step drill bits and HANSON® taps and dies. IRWIN Industrial Tool products are available wherever professional tools are sold. For more information about the IRWIN line of hand tools and power tool accessories, call 1-800-GO IRWIN or visit irwin.com.
About Sharpie and Sanford
Sharpie®, invented in 1964, is the popular family of permanent markers. Sanford, maker of Sharpie permanent markers, is a business unit of Newell Rubbermaid Inc. (NYSE: NWL). The Company is a worldwide leader in the manufacturing and marketing of writing instruments, including such well known brands as Paper Mate®, Colorific®, Parker®, Waterman®, EXPO® and uni-ball®, among others. Sanford makes more than 6,000 products ranging from markers, pens and pencils to professional art products and fine writing instruments. For more information on Sanford and its family of brands, please visit www.sanfordcorp.com or call 800.323.0749.