Small Teams Surviving in Midst of Shaky Economy
Photo by Wesley Daniel / TheRacingExperts.Com
Casey Mears (13) has managed to stay 28th in points with nine top-25 finishes on the season.
By Brandon Hauff
All opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.
Over the years, many small teams have been “field fillers,” but many have had reasonable success our great sport. Today, we see some of them run consistently well, even though some of them may have to use the start-and-park method in order to keep up with their budget to race that weekend.
Germain Racing- This season, they have cut down to only one team with the No. 13 of Casey Mears with Fortune 500 company Geico sponsoring their efforts. Last season, they tried with two teams, the No. 13 and the No. 60 with the sponsor of Big Red, and driver Mike Skinner. The second car shut down the team towards the end of last year due to lack of funding. Casey has run very well for the team this season, even though the luck just has not been there. At times, they have showed that they have the capability to run as high as the top 15. They are still near the top-30 in owner points, and with a little luck, they can be a strong top-25 to top-20 team.
Front Row Motorsports- Over the years, these
teams have had times that they have been able to compete for really good
finishes. This year they hired David
Ragan, arguably a driver with raw talent.
He replaced David Gilliand in the No. 34 car for the year, while
Gilliand drives the No. 38. They have
also added Rookie of the Year contender Josh Wise in the No. 26. Wise has done very well for the team as a
rookie making all but one race this season.
Overall, they have not been a top-10 contending team, but owner Bob
Jenkins pours millions of his own dollars into the team to run inside the
BK Racing- This is a small team who formed this year in January 2012 with drivers Landon Cassill and Travis Kvapil. Currently they both sit solidly in the top 35 in owner’s points, with recycled Team Red Bull equipment. It took the team only nine races to get their first top-20 finish with Cassill in the No. 83 at Richmond when he finished 20th. The team hopes to get three cars running in multiple races throughout the rest of the season, with the addition of the No. 73 with driver David Reutimann, along with the No. 93 of Kvapil and the No. 83 of Cassill.
Nemco Motorsports- Since 2009, Joe Nemechek has been racing for his own team, even though he has had to start-and-park on many occasions. That doesn't stop him though as he has made all but 12 races since then. For a single-car operation with limited sponsorship, if any, that is pretty good. Joe has run in Nationwide Series full-time along with his Cup program. Joe currently sits in the top 10 in points on the Nationwide side. The team continues to show up to the track each weekend to make the race, and hope to find sponsorship here in the near future. Many speculate that the No. 87’s start and park efforts in Cup help fund the Nationwide car.
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