Bell Replacing Shaffer In No. 83

Christopher Bell will pilot the No. 83 CH Motorsports car next season. (Julia Johnson Photo)
Christopher Bell will pilot the No. 83  CH Motorsports car next year.(Julia Johnson Photo)
Christopher Bell will pilot the No. 83 CH Motorsports car next season. (Julia Johnson Photo)

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Christopher Bell will take over driving duties of the No. 83 CH Motorsports sprint car owned by Aaron Call and Janet Holbrook next season.

Bell replaces veteran shoe Tim Shaffer, who wheeled the No. 83 to victory in the 50th Knoxville Nationals in 2010, and won four-straight UNOH All Star Circuit of Champions titles from 2009 to 2012. Shaffer joins a growing list of drivers, including Lance Dewease and Craig Dollansky, who are currently in search of a ride for next year.

Bell is currently in his first year in the Honda USAC National Midget Series, driving for Keith Kunz/Curb-Agajanian, where he is the dirt series championship leader. He has five USAC dirt midget victories in 2013, including victories in the Belleville Midget Nationals and Gold Crown Midget Nationals as well as the overall Indiana Midget Week title.

“I’m just looking forward to going and having fun and living my dream,” Bell said by phone Friday afternoon. “Hopefully we’ll have some good runs, including some top 10s and maybe we’ll even get a win or two in there.”

Originally Call was interested in fielding Bell in a few races this season. The conversation between Bell and Call quickly moved from 2013 to 2014 with Call expressing interest in Bell driving the No. 83 next season.

Bell wasn’t sure he’d be able to do that because he already committed to racing the full Honda USAC National Midget Series schedule for Kunz. He has also committed to the full Traxxas USAC Silver Crown Series calendar with Team 6R next year.

“I wasn’t sure if it was going to work out because I already had prior commitments to Keith Kunz and Team 6R for the USAC Silver Crown and midget schedules,” Bell said. “They informed me they were only going to run a partial schedule and so I think it is going to work out pretty well for both of us.”

The tentative plan is for Bell and CH Motorsports to enter between 35 and 40 races next season. According to Bell, there is no set plan for what races the team will be entering.

“I think it just kind of depends on what is ever is open on an available weekend. I’m not really sure. It is kind of tough to say without the schedules being out yet. We’re not exactly sure what we’re going to do next year,” Bell said.
Bell does have some experience behind the wheel of a winged sprint car. Earlier this year he picked up two victories in the Midwest Open Wheel Ass’n as well as a victory in the ASCS Gulf South Region.

In addition to signing Bell, CH Motorsports has also secured primary sponsorship from Allegra Printing and Imaging of Traverse City, Mich., for the 2014 season.