- Marty Smith, NASCAR
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JTG Daugherty Racing has signed what team co-owner Brad Daugherty called a "technical alliance" with Michael Waltrip Racing, and thus will field Toyota Camrys full-time in the Sprint Cup Series beginning in 2009.
The deal will be announced formally Wednesday afternoon.
Under the agreement, JTG/Daugherty receives the same chassis, engines and technological information-sharing that Waltrip gets through Toyota Racing Development.
"This way we don't come out of the box already behind," said Daugherty, reached by phone Wednesday. "Actually, this puts us about two years ahead of where we would have been otherwise."
Daugherty, an ESPN NASCAR analyst, said the alliance includes the No. 47 team being housed under the MWR roof.
Daugherty stressed there was still independence from MWR, however, saying it is not a merger and that the No. 47 is not a fourth Waltrip team.
"We'll work with Toyota Racing Development out of Costa Mesa [Calif.], and all their parts and pieces already flow through MWR," Daugherty said. "It just makes sense for us to be in-house over [at MWR]."
Marcos Ambrose will drive the No. 47 Toyota, with sponsorship from Little Debbie Snack Cakes and Clorox.
Marty Smith is a contributor to ESPN's NASCAR coverage. He can be reached at ESPNsider@aol.com.