Published On: Thu, Aug 20th, 2015

sad day for Michael Waltrip Racing

Waltrip Racing, on brink of collapse, releases drivers at end of season.

Michael Waltrip -  Bowyer-Kahne

 

Clint Bowyer will leave Michael Waltrip Racing at the end of the season, forcing NASCAR’s original Toyota team to either scale back to a part-time status or close its doors in 2016.

Team owner Rob Kauffman said last month he was pulling his money out of the team that currently fields full-time cars for Bowyer and David Ragan. He also said he would be joining the ownership group at Chip Ganassi Racing.

Kauffman, Bowyer and Waltrip all made the announcement about their futures early Wednesday:

Rob Kauffman, co-owner of Michael Waltrip Racing, has agreed to buy an interest in Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates. The companies will continue to operate separately and compete against each other for the remainder of the 2015 season. They are also currently evaluating ways to field the most competitive race teams possible to provide an excellent platform for their partners and employees for the 2016 season and beyond. More details will follow in due course.

“Well, it’s a sad day for MWR obviously. I love the culture we’ve built there, our sponsors, they’re not sponsors, they’re partners. And our employees are our teammates, ” Waltrip said to Jacksonville . “We just have the perfect workplace, and unfortunately in 2016, we’re not going to be racing there.

Read the full story at  jacksonville by Don Coble

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In 2013, late in the year, there was an announcement that a company nobody had ever heard of would be the title sponsor of a car and driver in the Verizon IndyCar Series.

The car ran last season with the company’s logo all over the race car and the driver’s uniform but then it vanished from the sport at season’s end. Some reporters heard later that despite contractual obligations and promises, the company hadn’t cut a cheque for the team since before last year’s Indianapolis 500.

To avoid embarrassment, to save face, etc., the team went into its piggy bank and took out enough money to weather the storm. But this season, that team was a car and driver short. And the piggy bank was still empty.

 

Michael Waltrip Racing (“MWR”), is a professional stock car racing team focused on the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. The company is as a 50–50 partnership between Robert “Rob” Kauffman, the 44-year-old founder and managing partner of Fortress Investment Group, and two-time Daytona 500 winner Michael Waltrip, who first established the team in 1996 in the Busch Series (now Xfinity Series) (Wikipedia)

 

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