Alpha Prime Racing issued a press release on Thursday, November 11, confirming that Ellis will join a list of drivers that also includes Tommy Joe Martins, Rajah Caruth, Andy Lally, and Caesar Bacarella. The release did not reveal the number of races that Ellis will run, but it confirmed that he will make his first start of the year on April 8 at Martinsville Speedway.
“He doesn’t quit,” Martins said in a press release from Alpha Prime Racing. “He’s a talented racecar driver. He’s just never found a home out here. He’s had to bounce around and just make it work. He’s willing to drive anything, but he’s never been in top-15 level equipment. We want to give him that chance.
“I had over a hundred NASCAR starts before I got a top-10,” Martins continued. “I look at Ryan and what he’s done to stay around – driving for no money, driving for small teams. He’s really impressed me anytime I’ve ever raced with him. He’s a great addition, and he’s going to surprise some people.”
Ellis has suited up for 88 different races spread across the top three national series while driving for a wide variety of teams and posting one top-15 finish. He has made starts for nine Truck Series teams, twelve Xfinity Series teams, and four NASCAR Cup Series teams. The list includes Rick Ware Racing, BK Racing, Jimmy Means Racing, and Jennifer Jo Cobb Racing among others.
Ellis Has His Sponsorship Secure for the 2022 Season
A key part of the press release is that Ellis already has his sponsorship for the part-time schedule in the No. 44. He will work with CorvetteParts.net, continuing a relationship that featured four races during the 2021 NASCAR Xfinity Series season.
Ellis does not have a finalized schedule for the 2022 NASCAR Xfinity Series. The team will provide further information in the coming months, but the current expectation is that the California native will join Alpha Prime Racing for five races while representing CorvetteParts.net.
“I can’t reiterate enough how appreciative I am of Tom and TJ of CorvetteParts.net giving me a chance to compete with an extremely strong program at APR,” Ellis said in the press release. “The Keen’s support of my career means so much to me. We’ve been friends since meeting at GFR and it means so much that they continue to support my dream with their amazing family-owned business. The Keen’s and their brand are extremely well known and respected in and outside of the garage area. We want to continue to help driver sales so we can grow this partnership.”
Alpha Prime’s Schedule Continues to Take Shape
While co-owners Martins and Bacarella have yet to reveal the full schedule for the cast of drivers, they have provided some details. Specifically, the team revealed the races that Caruth and Lally will run during the 2022 season.
Lally will focus on road courses due to his expertise on the unique tracks. He will run all six road courses on the Xfinity Series schedule — Circuit of the Americas, Portland International Raceway, Road America, Indianapolis Road Course, Watkins Glen International, and the Charlotte Roval.
Caruth, on the other hand, will control the No. 44 for races at Martinsville Speedway, Dover International Speedway, and Richmond Raceway while primarily focusing on his ARCA Menards Series career. The team noted that other starts could be possible based on the available sponsorship.
Martins and Bacarella will both make a handful of starts during the 2022 Xfinity Series season. They have not finalized their respective schedules just yet, but Martins explained in the team reveal press release that he aims to run 10-15 races.