Waltrip closer to driving only part-time in 2010

Calypso

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Apr 29, 2009
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Michael Waltrip said on Tuesday he is leaning strongly toward driving a part-time Sprint Cup Series schedule in 2010.

"That's what it's feeling like for me," Waltrip told ESPN "I said at the beginning of the year, and I was dead serious, if the other two cars are outrunning me and I'm not keeping up, heck with it.

"This year it's not working for me. I just want to have a winning championship race team."

Surrendering his seat in the No. 55 NAPA Toyota to Patrick Carpentier at Infineon Raceway in two weeks, Waltrip said, is a clear sign. The car is 32nd in owner points, compared to 11th for David Reutimann and 18th for Marcos Ambrose.

"It's pretty obvious with my willingness to not drive at [Infineon] that I'm looking at what I'm going to do in '10," Waltrip said. "It certainly makes it easier when you see the performance of the other teams, see what we're building going forward."

Waltrip said he'll definitely race at Daytona in 2010 and he'd like to drive a fourth car for Michael Waltrip Racing in a handful of other events. He said no decision has been made on whether he or his replacement will get the No. 55, although he would prefer to keep that number.

Martin Truex Jr. has been mentioned as a replacement. His contract with Earnhardt Ganassi Racing ends after this season and he's close to making a decision that doesn't appear to include EGR.

Truex's younger brother, 17-year-old Ryan, already is a developmental driver for MWR. He won a NASCAR Camping World East race at Watkins Glen this past weekend.

"There's not anything I'm in position to talk about," Waltrip said when asked about Truex.

But Waltrip hopes to have everything clear by the July race at Daytona, where he has three of his four Cup wins.

"We still don't know what all I'm going to do," he said. "I'll definitely race. I'll definitely be at Daytona. I don't know after that to what extent."

Meanwhile, Waltrip is excited about putting Carpentier in at Infineon and says he also could replace him at the other road course, Watkins Glen.

Carpentier is considered a road-course specialist. He has a pole and two runner-up finishes in the Nationwide Series race at Montreal and a top five in the Nationwide race at Mexico City.

He was 23rd in last season's Cup race at Infineon driving for Gillett Evernham Motorsports.

"If I see where I can improve my car's performance then that's exactly what I am going to do," said Waltrip, who has two top fives and 11 top 10s in Cup road races. "I am a good road racer, but Patrick is a great road racer.

"I love being an owner and I want to get another win for NAPA. It will feel just as good if I get the victory for NAPA or watching from the pit box with Patrick driving the car. I appreciate NAPA allowing me to make these kind of personnel moves when I feel it is best for the team."

Reutimann won the first race for MWR last month when he captured the rain-shortened Coca-Cola 600 at Lowe's Motor Speedway. Waltrip would like to see more of those moments, and if stepping aside helps, then he's willing to do it.

"I'm definitely going to drive some races in 2010," he said. "If it isn't full time, then we'll have somebody else in our other car."
 

Snoozer

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Oct 13, 2008
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Canada Eh!
I thought he already drove part time. :scratch: :D

Hardly finishing a race doesn't count. ;)
Seriously though, good for him. It'll make his team stronger in the long run putting someone else in the car.
He's a great pitch man and face for the company but as a driver? Maybe its time to hang it up.
 

flap_jackson

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Nov 10, 2008
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I'm so done with part-time drivers. Drive, or do not drive. There should not be any part-time. :thumbsdown:
 

fishy

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Dec 2, 2008
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"I'm so done with part-time drivers. Drive, or do not drive. There should not be any part-time."

Why would you give a crap if some drivers don't want to run the whole schedule?
That's as stupid as locking in 43 drivers and not letting any others try to qualify. With that plan, Brad Keslowski wouldn't have a win this season and we'd never see Bill Elliott or Sterling Marlin again.
 

fishy

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Me too. I just wish they were more competitive. The last one I can think of to even come close was Terry lebonte at a road course a couple years ago.

Check the stats, Bill Elliott, David Gilliland, Brad Keslowski, Boris Said, Scott Pruitt, and others have all had real good runs in the past 2 seasons.
 

Snoozer

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Check the stats, Bill Elliott, David Gilliland, Brad Keslowski, Boris Said, Scott Pruitt, and others have all had real good runs in the past 2 seasons.

DOH!! I thought Lebonte's 3rd was the best recently. I didn't even think about Brad!
I haven't had my coffee break yet.
 

Calypso

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Apr 29, 2009
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"I'm so done with part-time drivers. Drive, or do not drive. There should not be any part-time."

Why would you give a crap if some drivers don't want to run the whole schedule?
That's as stupid as locking in 43 drivers and not letting any others try to qualify. With that plan, Brad Keslowski wouldn't have a win this season and we'd never see Bill Elliott or Sterling Marlin again.

Ditto to this...:bigthumbup:
 

semipenguin

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Oct 11, 2008
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The best part time driver won 105 Cup Races :shock:

Who cares what Michael does. Last time I check this was the first Michael Waltrip thread. The guy's fans haven't been setting the world on fire. The go right along with the Ward Burton fans :right:

Good for Mikey. I hope MWR becomes the next RCR, or better yet, HMS :)
 

DexterMorgan

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Oct 22, 2008
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"I just wish they were more competitive. The last one I can think of to even come close was Terry lebonte at a road course a couple years ago. "

Ummmm....Mark Martin?
 

Calypso

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Say what you want about Mikey, but he his one hell of a pitchman. The sponsors just love him. It's amazing how Napa & Aaron's could stay so loyal to him after the last couple of years - "mysterious substance" found in the manifold at Daytona, sucking ass for the first year & a half.
Reply With Quote
 

dpkimmel2001

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Say what you want about Mikey, but he his one hell of a pitchman. The sponsors just love him. It's amazing how Napa & Aaron's could stay so loyal to him after the last couple of years - "mysterious substance" found in the manifold at Daytona, sucking ass for the first year & a half.
Reply With Quote

You are correct and Dexter does not like to use quotes. It does make it harder to follow. :bigahh:
 

semipenguin

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Yes, it would be nice if people would use the QUOTE feature so we know who you're quoting. But I'm used to it :)
Posted via Mobile Device
 

dpkimmel2001

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Same here. It just makes it a little harder to follow the threads and who said what. Oh well. :scratch: