Rusty Wallace Racing
|Base||Mooresville, North Carolina|
|Notable car numbers||4, 36, 50, 61, 62, 64, 66|
|Notable drivers||Steven Wallace
T. J. Bell
|Notable sponsors||Duraflame, Bell Helicopter, Aspen Dental, Jimmy Johns, South Point Hotel, Casino & Spa, Pilot Flying J, 5-hour Energy|
|Manufacturer||Toyota, Ford, Dodge , Chevrolet|
|Opened||1985 (Reopened 2012)|
Rusty Wallace Racing, formerly known as Rusty Wallace, Inc. is a NASCAR racing team based in Mooresville, North Carolina, near Charlotte. The team is owned by former NASCAR champion and commentator Rusty Wallace. Wallace announced on January 6, 2012, that the team would go on a temporary hiatus after being unable to find a sponsor for Rusty's son Steven. The team returned to the Nationwide Series with Steven piloting the Rusty Wallace Racing No.4 Ford Mustang in the 2012 Virginia 529 College Savings 250 at Richmond International Raceway, where he started and finished in 11th place. The team will make at least one Nationwide Series start in 2013 with Steve Wallace behind the wheel.
RWI was founded in 1984 as Rusty Wallace's marketing firm. It began fielding racecars in 1985 for Wallace in the No. 66 Oldsmobile. He won a pole in his first race at Daytona International Speedway, and ran three more races that season, which included two consecutive top-fives. He ran three races in 1986 and 1988, and had four top-tens with sponsorship from Alugard and Kodiak.
Beginning with the 1989 season, Wallace began fielding the No. 36 Cox Treated Lumber Pontiac for his youngest brother Kenny. He would win three poles and had sixteen top-ten finishes, and was named Rookie of the Year in addition to his sixth place points finish. After a winless 1990, he earned his first career victory at Volusia County Speedway, followed by another win later in the year at New Hampshire International Speedway, allowing him to finish a career-best 2nd in points. In 1992, Dirt Devil became the team's new sponsor, and Wallace had just one win and fell to sixth in points. After Kenny's promotion to the Winston Cup series, the team shut down.
Car No. 62 History
The No. 62 debuted in 2006 as the No. 61 Dodge. It was driven by Steve Wallace, Rusty's youngest son, at Dover International Speedway and finished 21st. It ran another race at Phoenix with Wallace finishing 16th. The 64 ran only one race in 2007, with Chase Austin finishing 41st at Memphis Motorsports Park. The team would run full time in 2008 with the ride originally to be shared between Austin, Penske Racing test driver David Stremme, and road racer Max Papis, but Stremme's consistent top-10 runs put him in the seat full-time, with the exception of road courses, with 5 top-fives and 16 top-10s leading to an 11th place points finish for him. Atreus Homes and Communities began the season as the sponsor, but soon left. AVIS, Penske Trucking, and Loan Star Title Loans shared the sponsorship duties for the rest of the season. Stremme's return to the Sprint Cup Series left the seat open, and former Truck Series driver Brendan Gaughan drove the renumbered 62 in 2009 with sponsorship from South Point Hotel, Casino & Spa, before U.S. Fidelis and 5-Hour Energy came over to share sponsorship with the No. 66.
Michael Annett, along with sponsor Pilot Flying J, drove the car in 2011, with Gaughan returning to the Camping World Truck Series with Germain Racing. After an arrest for a DUI prior to Daytona, Annett rebounded and finished 9th in points. However, Annett was released following the shutdown of RWR and gave the No. 62 team's owners points to JD Motorsports.
Car No. 64 History
Car No. 66 History
RWI returned in 2004 with Billy Parker as the driver of the No. 66 Dodge Intrepid in NASCAR's Nationwide Series, with primary sponsor Duraflame. Parker was scheduled to drive in 17 races, but after finishing only 4 of 8 races he was released. He was replaced by Jamie McMurray, who won the team's first pole on New Hampshire and later won the team's first race at Darlington Raceway. Rusty Wallace drove in two races as well, finishing in the top-ten both times.
In 2005, RWI ran a full 35 race schedule in the NASCAR Nationwide Series. At the request of Duraflame, who switched to sponsor another team, the Dodge Charger was renumbered No. 64. McMurray shared driving duties with Wallace's former Penske Racing South teammate Jeremy Mayfield, Bill Elliott, and Wallace. Miller High Life Light and Top-Flite Golf shared sponsorship. The next season, McMurray and Steve Wallace split driver duties in the No. 64 Dodge Charger. Top-Flite Golf remained the primary sponsor during McMurray's 20 races, while the Jackson Roscoe Foundation was primary sponsor for most of Wallace's 17 races.
In 2007, Steve Wallace was named the full-time driver of the newly-renumbered 66, with Homelife Communities becoming a primary sponsor. Wallace won two poles but finished 19th in points. Reed Sorenson drove the 66 in one race as well. Atreus Homes and Jimmy John's sponsored Wallace in 2008, who had seven top-ten finishes. US Fidelis and 5-Hour Energy sponsored Wallace's full-time run in 2009, with one top five and nine top tens with a respectable 7th place points finish. After US Fidelis ran into financial trouble, 5-Hour Energy sponsored the team in 2010 and 2011, finishing 10th and 9th in points in the respective years. After 5-hour Energy left RWR to sponsor Clint Bowyer at Michael Waltrip Racing in the Cup Series, team owner Rusty Wallace was forced to suspend the Nationwide Series operations and handed the No. 66 owners points to MAKE Motorsports. In 2013, the team will attempt to qualify for the History 300 at Charlotte Motor Speedway with the Steven Wallace driving the No. 66.
Return to Sprint Cup
In 2011, Rusty Wallace Racing acquired the owner's points of the No. 77 Penske Racing team, guaranteeing Steve Wallace a start in the 2011 Daytona 500. Wallace drove the No. 77 car, which was sponsored by 5 Hour Energy.
- Caraviello, David (February 9, 2013). "Revived RWR Learned Lessons From Shutdown". NASCAR. Retrieved February 11, 2013.
|This article relies on references to primary sources. (April 2007)|