Frustrated Wimmer Takes it One Race at a Time
By Dave Rodman, NASCAR.com
Rather than chuckle at the irony of Richard Childress Racing being his racing savior in 2011, Wisconsin veteran Scott Wimmer chooses to cherish the relationships.
"The biggest positive was just the people I met," Wimmer said. "Richard's just a great owner to drive for -- he's got so much history in the sport and he's just a genuine great person, him and Will Lind and [son-in-law Mike] Dillon and [wife] Judy Childress -- they're just great people."
Once the Wausau, Wis., native graduated from Midwest late models to NASCAR's national tours, Wimmer found his greatest success in the current Nationwide Series' predecessor; as he scored six Busch Series victories between 2002-08, including a career-high four in '02.
And without question his series highlight came in 2007, when he and Cup Series veteran Jeff Burton won car owner Richard Childress his last NASCAR title to date, the final Busch Series owners' championship. While struggling to maintain a presence in the series, that's one link that keeps the money flowing.
"I'm still very fortunate in that I do a lot of work for work for [RCR]," Wimmer said. "I do a lot of testing, and I've worked with Tim George [Jr., the most recent ARCA Series winner] and I've worked with Ty and Austin Dillon. They still rely on me for testing and helping other drivers and that makes me feel good. They appreciated the time that I spent up there and how hard I worked for that company -- but really the relationships with everybody that I gained up there was probably the biggest [positive]."
And so it makes Wimmer's 2011 even more stark. He's made 13 of 14 Nationwide Series events, but has nothing more than a couple of definite rides with a part-time team, ML Motorsports, in the future.
"I get along with [ML Motorsports] really well and I think that's a really good situation for me," Wimmer said. "It's not full time but they do have nice equipment and they're a team that hasn't run real strong in the past and they're looking for a driver with some experience, to hopefully help their program get better, so we're looking at some of the standalone races --- the Iowas and IRPs --- and running with them again."
An environment that's made it hard for owners hasn't made it any easier for drivers -- no matter how good their track record.
"[The 2011 season] is kind of disappointing," Wimmer said. "I thought I was going to go into the year running full time with primarily the same team -- that hasn't happened and really that's that's been my career, my story since 2009 [laughing]. I keep trying to hang on and find competitive rides -- full-time rides -- but right now there's just nothing out there; there's very few.
"You kind of scratch some things together, but in the long run if you're not there each and every week -- and in good equipment -- you're not going to beat Kyle Busch and Carl Edwards and those type drivers. You're just not going to beat 'em. It's difficult but hopefully something [will happen]."
The chassis currently used in the Nationwide Series is a plus.
"I like [the new Nationwide car]," Wimmer said. "I don't think it's made the series as close as we thought it would. But in the long run I think it's going to end up helping the owners out. I think it's gonna make the racing a little more competitive [and] I think the cost is gonna stay down [because] there's not as much gray area with these cars where you can really spend a lot of money [in development].
"They drive really good -- almost too good, in some cases. I think some of the tracks we go to you've got to rely on horsepower because we pretty much run 'em wide-open there. I think in some cases, if they could make 'em to where they don't drive as good, where you had to get out of the throttle and things like that, it might make it a little more competitive. But so far I've been really impressed."
Wimmer said when he was with RCR he did some of the initial testing of the Nationwide new car and "I was impressed with it back then," Wimmer said. "Just like with the Cup new car, it took a little time but now guys are figuring it out and so far I'm pretty happy with it."
And in the meantime, Wimmer said he's trying to maintain a presence at the race tracks so as not to become out-of-sight and out-of-mind, while working on sponsorship deals "but it's really hard to get any of those things locked down and moving forward with them."
The biggest frustration comes when Wimmer pledges allegiance to the Nationwide Series.
"I've kind of focused on the Nationwide Series," Wimmer said. "After I went Cup racing I thought I'd never leave Cup -- I thought I'd be up there for quite a while. Unfortunately that hasn't happened."
Wimmer has made a couple of starts this season for Robby Gordon Motorsports, "here and there, just to do something on the weekends, but for the most part, most of my energy has been toward the Nationwide Series. I think it's a great series and I think with the way sponsorship is now that's kind of a good fit with the money you can find."
"I think it's a lot of things," Wimmer said. "Sponsorship isn't that strong. We're getting a lot of younger drivers in the sport, but I don't see a lot of new sponsors coming in with them [chuckling] or things like that. So I think it's a lot of different things. Really, right now if you want to race in NASCAR -- and I don't care how much experience you have or what you've done in the past -- if you don't have a sponsor with you, you're not going to be able to race and unless you have a really good sponsor you aren't going to be with a competitive team.
"It's frustrating. I'm kind of at the [cross] roads -- I've been down here since 2001 and can't find anything and it's hard to switch careers after 10 or 11 years at something. So hopefully something will come around, but the last three years, the way it's gone, it doesn't look good."
Wimmer comes from a racing family, and recently he's taken steps to insure a future in the sport. But rather than take advantage of his skills as a driver, which naturally would lend itself to spotting if Wimmer chose that route -- or even working on cars, which he grew up doing -- Wimmer might choose the route that best suits his family, including putting together a family-operated race team.
"We've got everything," Wimmer said. "We've got tools and equipment and we've actually got some pretty good people to help us out. The new car definitely does that, because they're not so specialized. I think earlier this year when I was running for Key Motorsports we actually took one of our big speedway cars to Bristol [a half-mile short track] and ran pretty competitive with it.
"It's not like you have to have a shop full of cars any more. You can use crossover cars, quite a bit so it's just one of those deals -- of finding the proper money and sponsorship to do it. I know we've talked about it, but it doesn't go too far because when you start putting together the cost of going to the races versus what they pay to start, and it's just hard to make it work."
State Park Speedway News
WAUSAU NOON OPTIMIST KID'S NIGHT 75 THIS THURSDAY!
Wausau, WI – School’s out, let’s celebrate! This Thursday is Wausau Noon Optimist Kid’s Night at State Park Speedway! That means bike races, bike giveaways, the Klements Racing Sausages and kids 12 and under get in FREE and also receive a FREE treat from the Noon Optimists! “Last year over 75 kids came out and participated in the bike races,” says State Park Speedway Owner Scott Wimmer, “It’s really a fun night for kids, they get to go out on the track and we hope to have even more out this year.”
Registration for the bike races will be open until racing begins at 7:30. Kids are encouraged to come early to register and also encouraged to bring bike helmets.
This Thursday the competition on the racetrack heats up! In preparation for the ASA Midwest Tour River Valley Bank Flip Merwin Memorial Race on June 23rd, a handful of ASAMT drivers plan to race at SPS this Thursday. Fans can get a sneak peak at the level of competition they’ll see just two weeks later. As drivers are confirmed for the event, it will be posted on the State Park Speedway website, www.stateparkspeedway.com
Fan gates open at 4:30pm Thursday with qualifying at 6:30 and racing at 7:30.
Wimmer Takes on Double Duty at Dover
Altamonte Springs, FL/May 14, 2011 –NASCAR Veteran Scott Wimmer will be taking on double duty this weekend as he subs for Robby Gordon in the #7 Fast Five/Speed Energy Dodge Charger R/T for this weekends Fed Ex 400 benefitting Autism Speaks at Dover International Speedway for the latest round of the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season.
Wimmer will be making his 108th start in the Cup series, the first since August of 2009 at the Sharpie 500. This will also mark Wimmers seventh start at Dover where he has one of his three career Top-10 finishes in the Cup series. “I want to thank Robby for giving me this opportunity to help him and his team out. I’m looking forward to getting behind the wheel of his Cup car that has shown so much potential this season. I’m just going to go out there and drive smart and get as many points as I can for Robby to help keep his team in the Top-35 in Owner Points” states Wimmer.
Both Driver and Owner of the #7, Gordon has competed in each Sprint Cup race on the season and stands in 33rd position in Driver Points and 35th position in Owner Points. Wimmer understands his task, as each and every point is crucial to the team as they look to remain in the Top-35, which locks them in the field automatically for each round.
As mentioned, Wimmer will be pulling double duty this weekend as he also climbs behind the wheel again of the #40 Key Motorsports Chevy Impala for the NASCAR Nationwide Series. Wimmer is currently in 18th place in the 2011 NASCAR Nationwide Series Driver Points standings, and will mark his 216th career start in the series.
Follow Wimmer in the #7 Fast Five/Speed Energy Dodge live on Sunday, May 15th on FOX at 12:30pm.
Wimmer’s Solid Run Spoiled at Richmond
Altamonte Springs, FL/April 6, 2011 – Scott Wimmer, in the #40 DRAW”TITE Key Motorsports Chevy Impala, had a great feeling going into one of his best tracks. The sense was strong that Wimmer would have his best finish yet on the short track, and in qualifying in 21st position had a good car that he knew he could drive to the front of the field.
By lap 150 of the scheduled 250 Wimmer had brought his DRAW”TITE machine into the Top-10, where he remained for several laps, and was passing for 9th place when the drama began. Wimmer encountered a fuel issue with his car when he should have easily been able to go another 35 or so laps before needing to make a stop. Wimmer would be able to crawl his car into pit lane starving for fuel as the rest of the field passed at top speed under green flag conditions.
Wimmer could only sit and watch as the competition clicked off the laps and the frustration would mount as he was unable to get the car to restart.By the time he reentered the fray, he was six laps down in 32nd position with 65 laps remaining, and was a man on a mission to salvage as much as he could the rest of the way. Wimmer would pass anything in his way including the leaders down the stretch. By the time the checker flag dropped, Wimmer had run four fastest race laps and accumulated 33 green flag passes and his highest driver rating of the season on his way to a 24thplace finish. States Wimmer afterwards; “It’s really a shame the way things played out tonight. The #40 DRAW”TITE Chevy was a good car tonight, we had a very real shot at a Top-5. I don’t think anyone was catching Denny (Hamlin), but everyone else was fair game for sure. I really wanted to deliver tonight for the DRAW”TITE guys, and want to thank them for their support, we’d love to have them back and give them the results that they should have gotten tonight.”
On the season Wimmer dropped back one spot to 18th in the Drivers Points Championship, a mere 23 points out of the Top-15. For Curtis Key, he is currently tied for 24thin the Team Owners Points Championship, with his goal of Top-20 still well within reach. The Key Motorsports team now prepares for the Royal Purple 200 at Darlington Raceway on Friday, March 6that 7:30pm on ESPN2.
Additional information on DRAW”TITE may be obtained at www.draw-tite.com, on Scott Wimmer at www.scottwimmer.com or www.p1groupe.com. More information on Key Motorsports may be obtained atwww.keymotorsports.
Wimmer Puts on Solid Show at Daytona
Altamonte Springs, FL/February 21, 2011 – NASCAR star, Scott Wimmer, and the entire racing team of Key Motorsports were excited to be back in Daytona to race in NASCAR’s Drive4COPD 300 in the new #40 Chevy Impala this past weekend. They would face an uphill battle to keep up with the changes to the restrictor plates as NASCAR tried to eliminate the 2-car drafting which proved to be the quickest way around the circuit. A number of these changes were to take place at a moments’ notice, and kept the team hard at work. The team handled their task and never missed an on-track session.
Wimmer was still confident, and improved by more than two tenths from the first practice to the second. Focusing more on having a comfortable car for the race than a quick car in qualifying, Wimmer would start the Drive4COPD 300 in 42nd position. In classic fashion, Wimmer would pick his spots wisely to make up ground on the leaders. Before long Wimmer would find himself in 25th position after the first cycle of pitstops, when he would radio in that the hood was bowing in the center and cutting off air to the intake. The team brought the #40 Key Motorsports Chevy Impala in twice during the next caution period, and Wimmer was able to still gain a lap back and rejoin the fray with his goals still within reach.
"I really wanted to make sure I brought Curtis' car back in one piece, and in the Top-15,” said Scott Wimmer. "With the new points system in place I was confident we could accomplish a good finish here and head into Phoenix in the Top-10 in points."
With the hood situation still creating aero issues as well as robbing the car of its top end power, Wimmer would report in that the engine was skipping intermittently before it started smoking. Wimmer would radio into the crew that he knew the engine was going and brought it back to the garage for the remainder of the race. Wimmer and the Key Motorsports team will load up for their west coast swing in Phoenix and Las Vegas, two tracks Wimmer has always done well at. In his previous nine starts at Phoenix, Wimmer has 1 win, 4 Top-10's, led multiple laps with an average finish inside the Top-15 for his Nationwide career.
Wimmer, currently 24th in driver points, remains confident about the next few rounds; "Curtis and the team has put together some good cars for these next few races, I'm sure we can get out of there with some strong results and contend at the front of the grid." Key Motorsports is still searching for a primary sponsor for the season, but is dedicated to putting on their best effort until they can get the right company signed on.
Additional information on Scott Wimmer may be obtained at www.scottwimmer.com or www.p1groupe.com. More information on Key Motorsports may be obtained at www.keymotorsports.us
Wimmer Launches New Social Media Pages
Scott Wimmer Racing launches new Facebookand Twitter pages in anticipation of the upcoming race season. Social media sites provide fans an easy way to stay up to date with his/her favorite driver and SWR plans to take full advantage of the the amenities offered. The Scott Wimmer Facebook and Twitter pages will be more racing orientated and give behind the scenes looks during race days and even down time.
"It's the way a lot of drivers, companies, and fans are going these days," says Scott Wimmer, "It's so easy to get updates on your computer, phone, or iPad and know what is going on with who at any moment. I want to use these social media outlets to better connect with fans, so hopefully they will follow along."
Scott Wimmer fans should log on to Facebook and Twitter and become fans of Scott Wimmer and follow his journey on Twitter. Search for Scott Wimmer on Facebook and follow ScottWimmerRace on Twitter!
Veteran Driver Will Also Pilot BCR's No. 27 in Stand-Alone Events at Nashville and Kentucky
April 21st, 2010 - Baker Curb Racing announced today that Scott Wimmer will drive the team's No. 27 Red Man Moist Snuff Ford in Saturday's Aaron's 312 at Talladega Superspeedway. Wimmer will also pilot the No. 27 for Baker Curb Racing in the upcoming stand alone events at Nashville Superspeedway and Kentucky Motor Speedway.
The Wausau, WI native has finished in the top 10 in each of his two starts on the NASCAR Nationwide Series this season and has also led a lap in each race. Wimmer drove previously for Baker Curb Racing during the 2006 season and collected four top-10 finishes in 16 starts.
"Scott Wimmer has a solid resume in NASCAR and when given the chance this year he has proven that he can run up front and compete for wins," Baker Curb Racing president Matt Crews said. "He had some strong runs in our car in 2006 and we look forward to continued success with him behind the wheel of the No. 27 Red Man Moist Snuff Ford Fusion."
The 34-year old's resume includes six career Nationwide Series victories, including four during the 2002 season, and a third-place finish in the 2004 Daytona 500. In 2007 he and Jeff Burton teamed-up to win the NASCAR Nationwide Series Owner's Championship for Richard Childress Racing.
NASCAR Nationwide: Wimmer Deserves a Chance
Written by Ashley McCubbin
April 5th, 2010
Scott Wimmer is a talented driver in the Nationwide Series – yet continues to lose rides despite how successful he is for the team.
In his past two starts with JR Motorsports (JRM), he has finished seventh both times. Though come Phoenix, Wimmer won’t be in the No. 7 car. That ride has been given to Landon Cassill, a young star who has a development contract with Hendrick Motorsports, a team closely affiliated with JRM.
This isn’t the first time that Wimmer has made considerable contributions to a team and been set aside on the curb.
In 2007, Wimmer was pegged by Richard Childress Racing (RCR) to drive part of the schedule while veteran Jeff Burton was to run the other races. The end result of both of their success combined was to equal the owner’s championship for RCR.
In his 23 starts, Wimmer had no wins yet had a pole at Gateway, seven top fives, 14 top 10s and an average finish of 11.6. Though Wimmer did his part as combined with Burton’s finishes, they won the owner’s championship for RCR.
In 2008, the same package was put together and Wimmer once again had success. He won a race at Nashville, had a pole at Bristol, five top fives, 13 top 10s and an average finish of 10.5.
In 2009, Wimmer joined up with Curtis Key Motorsports, an under funded team to try to help them, while also running six races for JRM. In those six races, he finished ninth, 18th, ninth, 31st (engine), and 18th. In his 24 starts for Curtis Key Motorsports, he got them a top 10 with a seventh place finish at Memphis.
In 2010, JRM once again called upon Scott Wimmer and as said earlier, he delivered with back-to-back seventh place finishes.
When JRM announced that they’d be trying to run the No. 7 all year long, the first thought was Wimmer would be driving that car all year long. Though that didn’t happen as during the Memphis weekend, JR Motorsports announced Cassill would be driving the car for the next four races.
In comparing their stats, the obvious choice though would be Wimmer. In 201 Nationwide starts, Wimmer has six wins, 29 top fives and 73 top 10s while Cassill has only six top 10s in 26 starts.
Plus add in the contributions that Wimmer had made to both RCR and JRM, he’s most deserving of a full-time Nationwide Series ride that has good funding behind it.
Though in discussing Wimmer, you also have to fault RCR for not giving him a full-time ride after he had success running part-time with Burton.
Since letting Wimmer go, RCR’s Nationwide drivers have yet to match his success, besides Austin Dillion.
In his six starts, Dillion managed to get one top five finish. Though if you look at the other drivers, their stats don’t compare.
Since Wimmer left RCR, they’ve had three non-Cup drivers, besides Dillion, run their car: Stephen Leicht, Sean Caisse and John Wes Townley.
In 71 Nationwide starts, Leicht has one win (2007 Kentucky with Yates Racing), three top fives and 16 top 10s.
In three races with RCR, Caisse’s highest finish was 22nd at Loudon.
In 34 races, Townley’s highest finish is 15th at Las Vegas this year.
If I was RCR, I’d be looking to bring Wimmer back into the picture.
There are many talented drivers who have got pushed off to the curb and left without rides, slowly being forgotten.
Hopefully Wimmer is not the next driver added to that list because if I was starting a team and looking current free agents, he’d be one driver that I’d pick-up.
One Economic Indicator Is Positive: Few Worthy Drivers Are Without Rides
Written By Jim Pedley
Feb. 10, 2010
The economy still stinks. The signs of a stinking economy are everywhere. Perhaps the worst of those signs of stink are the unemployment numbers. But one of the lone exceptions to that could be in the very restricted demographic of NASCAR drivers.
In that category, things look, well, decent.
I did a little surfing on that subject the other day and came to the conclusion that based on my limited research (20 minutes on the internet) there was only one driver out there who has no full-time ride this season who really, really deserves one.
That driver is Scott Wimmer.
Wimmer, in recent years, has shown enough to warrant a ride in one of NASCAR’s three premier touring series. He was very good when he was driving the No. 29 Nationwide Series for Richard Childress Racing. He played a big part in winning RCR the team championship.
He was better than his Key Motorsports equipment last year in Nationwide. He had two top 10s in six races in JR Motorsports cars in 2009.
After Wimmer, the list of ride-worthy unemployeds thins out.
John Andretti has a partial ride and probably deserves a full one -- and J.J. Yeley, I think, is worthy of getting another shot, especially in Nationwide.
Maybe the two drivers with the highest profiles out of full-time work right now are Reed Sorenson and David Stremme.
Those are two great kids, but there is no denying that they have had their shots at proving themselves with top Cup teams. These days, as teams are in full-scramble mode to win trophies and I mean right now, good shots are limited to one per customer – even if you call within the next half hour.
Kenny Schrader is out there, though perhaps not available. He says he is happy racing dirt tracks these days, though he was lured back to Cup for the Shootout.
Scott Riggs? You would think a good Nationwide team would at least have a look but then again, he is getting up there in age.
Kyle Petty is still available, but, he is really getting up there in age and has a lot of potential distractions coming along with him.
Tony Raines? Nah.
The way it looks, very, very few established veterans are being left behind as NASCAR fires engines this week.
I guess that’s good – unless your are one of those drivers.
Jim Pedley is managing editor of Racin’ Today. Read more NASCAR news at racintoday.com.
Wimmer Gives Back To Community
Scott Wimmer has always been known as a NASCAR driver that has always given back. Most recently Scott participated in a charity snowmobile ride that benefited a memorial established in the honor of his close friend Philip "Flip" Merwin.
The ride, hosted by the Decker family of Eagle River, WI and was held in conjunction with the World Championship Snowmobile Races. Over 60 fellow riders paid to hit the trails in the celebrity ride which also features, Bobby Unser, Dale Loritz, and Danica Patricks father, TJ Patrick.
The ride wound through the forests and across the frozen lakes of northern Wisconsin. The trip include a stop for lunch at the Sayner Pub and concluded back in Eagle River after covering roughly 70 miles of snow covered trails.
The end of January would find Scott back at the snowmobile race track again. This time he was at the Wausau 525 Snowmobile Championship. Wimmer is a native of Wausau, WI and is eager to come home anytime he can. The Wausau 525 is a race weekend that was established to memorialize another Wausau racer, Scott's close friend Flip Merwin.
Held on Man Made Lake, the event attracted drivers from several states and Canada. Proceeds from the event directly benefit "Flips Fund". The fund was established after Flip Merwin passed away after a snowmobile accident at the Eagle River Snowmobile Derby in 2003.
"It is such an honor to be a part of these events year after year. The support continues to grow and the community really embraces Flips memory. The money raised is given back in scholarships and is also used to aid families with critically ill children. I really want to thank the Decker family for hosting the snowmobile ride and all of the organizers of the 525. They put on a great events. Flip would have been proud" Scott reflected.
Scott also teamed up with his father in late 2009 and purchase State Park Speedway in Wausau, WI. Scott and his brother Chris grew up racing on the local short track and is excited to bring racing back to his hometown.
In the upcoming months, the track and grounds will see massive improvements. The changes will make the venue for desirable for drivers and fans alike. It wasn't too long ago when Thursday nights in Wausau came to life with the late models at the 1/4 mile track and Wimmers look to once again make the track a local favorite.
“There’s still a lot to do and we are just in the beginning phase,” says Scott Wimmer, “There are a few races we would like to get or keep at State Park and all the specifics will continue to fall in to place.”
State Park Speedway begins its search for sponsors for the 2010 race season. There are many different opportunities including billboards and sponsorship nights at the track. For more information on sponsorship or to set up any interviews or media opportunities with either Ron or Scott Wimmer please contact Jana Jurkovich at (612) 819-4564 or firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information regarding State Park Speedway, please visit www.stateparkspeedway.com
For more information regarding Wausau