SCHAFFER TO JOIN LANE AS ASSISTANT CREW CHIEF FOR TASCA
Don't say Bob Tasca III didn't tell you so.
The cryptic crew chief carousel tuning rumor on CompetitionPlus.com has been revealed today as John Schaffer, who recently departed John Force Racing will join Bob Tasca Racing as a co-crew chief starting at this weekend's NHRA Virginia Nationals.
In return, Mike Green is headed to JFR, and is expected to tune Top Fuel rookie Austin Prock.
Schaffer, 31, the youngest professional full-time crew chief on the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series, is expected to bring a wealth of energy and Funny Car experience to the Ford team.
“I’ve known Jon and raced against Jon for many years, and I’ve always looked at him as an up-and-coming talent, no different than I feel about Eric,” Tasca said. “I’m optimistic that the two of them working together will be a powerful combination.
“Part of putting this program together in conjunction with Ford was to win races. We committed to that from the beginning and I’ve been working to create the best team I can that’s capable of producing the best results. I have very high expectations for our program. The only thing that is acceptable to me is for this team to win races and compete for a championship this year.
“It may take us a few runs, or a few races to get exactly where we want to be, but these changes are being based on the long-term goal, and that goal is to win races and win the championship with this Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Mustang. I didn’t feel like the set-up that I had was capable of doing that at any point this season, and just like the leader of any company, I wanted to set our team up for success in the near term to meet the long-term goals.”
Schaffer first entered motorsports through the kart and open-wheel competition before trying stock car racing. Ultimately, his friendship with longtime NHRA Top Fuel driver Dave Baca, who was based in Schaffer’s hometown of Discovery Bay, Calif., brought him to the NHRA.
Schaffer didn't expect to make a career of nitro racing, but the lure of nitro-burning hooked him in staying.
“Bob has a great organization that has been well-established, so there’s already a team, the parts, everything’s already here to succeed,” said Schaffer, who took his first NHRA job in the early 2000s. “I’m just bringing the knowledge I’ve gained over the last few years. I’m looking forward to working with Eric Lane to see if we can get this thing a little quicker and consistent and start winning some races.
“I’m looking forward to working with the Tasca family. I appreciate them giving me a chance and I’m excited for what the future will bring for Tasca Racing.”
Tasca debuted the all-new Ford Mustang body developed by Ford Performance at the 2019 season-opener in Pomona, Calif. He has five round wins entering the Virginia NHRA Nationals, including a semifinal finish in Phoenix. He is currently 10th in the point standings.