CAT to RCR: Bill Davis Left Looking for Sponsors Once Again

B SCorrespondent IJune 19, 2008

This time last year, Bill Davis Racing fielded two Caterpillar Toyota Camrys at Infineon.  Now, the two organizations will part ways after the 2008 Sprint Cup season, ending a 10 year partnership that has spanned 3 different drivers.  

The move comes as AT&T is forced out of sponsoring a car in NASCAR's highest series by the labyrinth of legal battles associated with Sprint's exclusive sponsorship.  AT&T must leave the series after the 2008 season, leaving veteran driver Jeff Burton and legendary owner Richard Childress without a sponsor for the #31 car.  

CAT, current sponsor of BDR's #22 driven by Dave Blaney, jumped at the opportunity to sponsor a car with the experience and financial backing of the Childress organization, which also employs perennial contenders Kevin Harvick and Clint Bowyer.  Jim Parker, vice president of Caterpillar’s North American Commercial Division, said that "joining Richard Childress and his team matches two organizations that share common values, as well as high levels of success," adding that he was "confident this new partnership will excite Caterpillar's customers, dealers and employees."  Does that mean that CAT and BDR don't have common values?  Or that they don't both have high levels of success?  Maybe if they had some more sponsor money, the level of success would be higher?  But I digress...

Davis remained optimistic about his team's prospects going into next season.  "This is an exciting time for our team," Davis said, "and we are looking forward to the future."  C'mon Bill.  You're not fooling anyone.  You know that not having a sponsor is not an "exciting time."  It wasn't an "exciting time" when you pulled Jacques Villeneuve from the 27 car because he failed to find an appropriate canadian sponsor.  Doug Yates and crew haven't had an "exciting time" playing musical paint schemes all year, piecing together week-to-week deals with anyone and everyone who wants a piece of the decal action.  Now instead of trying to find a sponsor for one of his teams, Davis is stuck holding the bag for both teams, as another longtime partnership ends with a sponsor seeking greener pastures, ala M&M/Mars, NAPA, UPS, and Budweiser.

And people wonder why the little guy never wins in NASCAR anymore...