Seven-Time Trans Am Champion Ernie Francis Jr. Returns to Trans Am’s TA Class at Sebring

February 23, 2024

Seven-Time Trans Am Champion Ernie Francis Jr. Returns to Trans Am’s TA Class at Sebring

After a two-year absence from the series, seven-time champion Ernie Francis Jr. will return to the Trans Am Series presented by Pirelli this weekend at Sebring International Raceway, driving in the TA class where he won four-consecutive championships.

Francis Jr. will fill in for an under-the-weather Brent Crews. The 2023 CUBE 3 Architecture TA2 Series champion was scheduled to do double duty and make his TA class debut. Unfortunately, illness will keep Crews out of both races this weekend, but the No. 79 ECC/Treetop Apple Juice Dodge Challenger will not sit idle, thanks to Francis Jr.

En route to his seven class championships (2014-2020), Francis Jr. earned 47 wins in Trans Am, the most of any driver in series history, and 24 wins in the TA class, putting him fourth in victories in the premier category. In addition to his four-consecutive TA championships, Francis Jr. is also a two-time champion in the TA3-A class and has one GT title. 

The opportunity to drive this weekend came because Francis Jr. was on site at the Sebring SpeedTour, competing in Sportscar Vintage Racing Association (SVRA). He will be driving his 2017 TA-class championship winning car in Group 10 for Breathless Racing.

“We could not be more thrilled to have Ernie Francis Jr. back in our paddock,” said John Clagett. “We have been fortunate enough to see Ernie grow from a young driver into one of the most successful drivers in the history of the Trans Am Series. We are proud of everything he’s done in the years since he’s left Trans Am, but we’re so excited that his immense talent will be back on display in Sunday’s race.”

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