Ryan Ellis is accustomed to entering each NASCAR season with only a few opportunities to prove what he’s capable of behind the wheel. Thanks to BJ McLeod, a team owner and driver himself, Ellis has run several races already this season.
With backing from Keen Parts, which sponsored Go FAS Racing when Ellis worked in the public relations department, he's able to run competitively in the Xfinity Series. Plus, he’ll also get a shot to return to the Cup Series with Rick Ware Racing at Kansas Speedway.
BY JOSEPH WOLKIN, @JoeWolkin
“It’s been good and this year has given me more of an opportunity than I ever had before. That’s mostly due to Keen Parts. They committed to the majority of the races I was going to run and I pieced together the rest of it with small companies that have been with me for a while. From a performance standpoint, we’ve had a larger allotment of tires and more preparation.”
“I’ve always respected him so much as a driver. He’s somebody who’s always been in a situation where you have to make the most of what you got. He does that every week. He does a very good job at it. He’s also probably the first guy I want on my team if we ever get into a fight. He’s just a hardcore racer.”
“The way that opportunity came about was very unique and I don’t know if that’s ever happened. The Ware’s just gave me a call and told me they want to do that. It’ll be really cool. Stuff like that doesn’t set in until you’re standing up there at driver introductions. Then, you’re thinking of how you’re in the thick of everything. I can go out there, make laps and have some fun.”
“I used to set so many goals, like the amount of races I want to run. I want to grow through my existing partners and show a positive return for every sponsor that comes on board. If I can keep making those people happy, I know my opportunities will continue to grow. That’s been my focus. I’m really thankful to have several races going into this year. I don’t know what lies ahead next year, but hopefully we can do a little bit more. I want to run the Daytona 500, too. Just one big race.”