Can't Get Hired? Start Your Own Team—It's the Latest Trend in NASCAR
NASCAR continues to teach me many thing. Some good, and some bad. Some are funny, and some are sad. Some are magnificent, and some are ludicrous.
But I'm always learning.
During the 2008 offseason and early into 2009, I had to find some way to pass time with the ban on testing. I constantly scoured all motorsports websites for any and all news. Carl Edwards bought a farm, by the way.
But I also discovered something else—just about anyone can start their own Sprint Cup Series team and it doesn't matter if they're going to be competitive or not.
Within the last month or two, we've heard about the formation of two major race teams, all with former drivers that have had their moment in the NASCAR sun. Well, the sun has set and NASCAR moved on without them, but apparently they were the only ones that didn't get the memo.
And of course, there will always be the field-fillers that attempt the Daytona 500 and other select races. There are these non-contenders that always seem to find themselves in the way. Teams like Carl Long Racing, BlackJack Racing and Cope/Keller Racing.
But, back to our three new teams.
Jeremy Mayfield will be both the owner and driver of the No. 41 All-Sport Toyota from the new Mayfield Motorsports. Mayfield was last seen competitive when driving for Ray Evernham in the No. 19 Dodge. He did make the Chase in 2005 after winning a race, but after that he fell off the radar and was replaced by Elliott Sadler. After had he had a disastrous 2007 season in a Bill Davis Toyota, where he saw more races on TV than from behind the wheeland was out performed by anyone.
And even if Mayfield said that the reason he was fired from the No. 19 because he had a falling out with Evernham, he was still not getting the job done. He only had two wins in three seasons, and only 22 top-10 finishes.
So long, see ya later.
Joe Nemecheck has started NEMCO Motorsports where he will also be the driver. The car is an un-sponsored No. 87 Toyota. Nemecheck's former rides include the No. 01 U.S. Army Chevrolet, the No. 13 and most recently the No. 78 Furniture Row Chevrolet. He last win was at Kansas in 2004 when he beat Ricky Rudd.
From there he bounced from team to team and did nothing spectacular.
Seek new work Senor.
Then there's Tommy Baldwin the former crew chief to drivers like Ward Burton, whom he won the Daytona 500 with, Jimmy Spencer, Dave Blaney and Kasey Kahne. Baldwin has formed Tommy Baldwin Racing with the No. 36 Toyota which is un-sponsored.
The driver is Scott Riggs.
Riggs has never won a Sprint Cup Series race although he has 3 career poles and a career high finish of 4th in the 2006 Sharpie 500 at Bristol. He's also driven for Ray Evernham where he was replaced by Patrick Carpentier (he too proved to be a bust).
Better luck next time.
Well, apparently that time is now for all three of these drivers. They were all released for not performing and doing more harm then good. They're not wanted by any other organization, as evidence by them not being hired, so they decided to start their own.
Now that concept is easy to understand because they are all drivers and competitors, racing is all they want to do is race.
But lets be honest: do any of them really have a snowballs shot in hell of accomplishing anything great this year?
Sure, they each have Toyota horsepower, but probably not the good stuff. What about chasis and crew members? Possibly just thrown together. Driver talent? Well, if they do have something left in them, they really need to show it.
It just seems all a waste to ride around non-competitively and be in the way, if they make the race that is. Or perhaps they've never talked to another owner-driver in Robby Gordon. Then again, all they'll be doing is talking--to themselves and the media all year long about how they can win and work toward making the Chase.
Uh, Dr. Phil line one.
They're great guys but their time in NASCAR is up and it's time to move on and do something else. Something besides showing that NASCAR will let anyone own a Sprint Cup team.
Or you know what let them race, and I've got some spare change laying around. So, instead of doing that pile of laundry, I'm gonna start my own team.
Anyone want to drive?
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