Swan Racing

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Swan Racing
Swan Racing logo.png
Owner(s) Brandon Davis
Bill Romanowski (minority)
Base Mooresville, North Carolina, United States
Series Sprint Cup Series
Race drivers 26. (Closed)
30. Parker Kligerman (R) (Closed)
Sponsors Swan Energy
Nutrition53/Lean1
SMS Audio
Speed Stick GEAR
LendingTree (Daytona 500)
Manufacturer Toyota
Career
Debut 2011 Crown Royal 400 (Richmond)
Latest race 2014 Bojangles' Southern 500 (Darlington)
Drivers' Championships 0
Race victories 0
Pole positions 0

Swan Racing was a stock car racing team that competed in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series until the 2014 season. The team was founded as Inception Motorsports which fielded a single #30 team in the Cup Series in 2011 and 2012 before being purchased by Swan Energy CEO Brandon Davis late in 2012. The team is headquartered in Mooresville, North Carolina in the United States. David Stremme was the team's original driver, before being replaced by rookies Cole Whitt and Parker Kligerman at the end of 2013. The team expanded to two teams in 2014 for Whitt and Kilgerman, attempting and qualifying for every event that season until the woes of sponsorship kicked in following the eighth race of the season. The team shut down in April 2014; its owners points, employees, and most of its assets moved to Xxxtreme Motorsports and BK Racing, though Parker Kligerman remains under contract with the team.

Team history[edit]

The team was established as Inception Motorsports in April 2011 in Mooresville, North Carolina by Inception Investment Group CEO Timothy McSweeney[1] with David Stremme as the driver of the No. 30. The following year, Inception Motorsports switched from Chevrolet to Toyota.[2]

Before the 2012 Talladega fall race, McSweeney sold the team to 33-year old Brandon Davis, a racing enthusiast and CEO of independent petroleum company Swan Energy. Davis vowed to change the team's reputation as a start and park entry, and instead run full races. The team utilized engines from Triad Racing Technologies, hired former crew chief Steve Hmiel to be the competition director, and switched names to Swan Racing Company (Swan Racing for short).[3][4] On January 31, 2013, former NFL linebacker Bill Romanowski became a minority owner of Swan Racing. His health supplement company, Nutrition53 (Romanowski wore the #53 during his 16-year playing career) was a primary sponsor for ten races and an associate sponsor for the remaining 26.[5]

Prior to the fall race at Richmond in 2013, the team announced that it was releasing driver David Stremme following that weekend's event, and planned to run several young drivers in preparation for the 2014 season. The move blindsided Stremme, who had helped found the team out of his own race shop and was integral in Davis' purchase of the organization in 2012. Stremme also held a profit stake in the team, though it had yet to make a profit.[6][7] On December 3, 2013, the team announced that Cole Whitt and Parker Kligerman would compete for Rookie of the Year honors for them in 2014, as the team expanded to two full-time cars with the No. 26 and No. 30.[8] On January 13, 2014, Anthony Marlowe from Iowa City Capital Partners was announced as a minority owner.[9] On February 4, 2014, it was announced that rapper 50 Cent's headset company SMS Audio will serve as Swan Racing's associate sponsor.[10]

On April 17, 2014, team officials announced that they would be reviewing the team's future due to lack sponsorship, though co-owner Anthony Marlowe stated he intended to run Whitt for the rest of the season.[11] On April 23, the team announced it had sold off both entries, with Whitt, Marlowe, and the #26 entry moving under the BK Racing banner. The owners points of the #30 team were sold to Xxxtreme Motorsport, which fielded a #30 car at Richmond before switching to their usual #44. Swan Racing's shop in Statesville, North Carolina was also sold to Xxxtreme Motorsport.[12]

Car No. 26 history[edit]

On February 13, 2013 NASCAR approved a temporary number change for the Daytona 500 to allow Swan Racing to compete using the number 26, as a charity effort in honor of the 26 who died during the Sandy Hook shooting in Newtown, Connecticut. Two-time Daytona 500 winner and fellow Toyota team owner Michael Waltrip drove the car, with regular driver David Stremme recruiting Waltrip to "further [the team's] relationship with Toyota." Waltrip was also reunited with former Dale Earnhardt, Inc. crew chief Tony Eury, Jr. Waltrip drive the car to a 22nd place finish.[13][14][15][16] The team ran the #30 for the rest of the year.

On January 7, 2014, Swan Racing announced that their new second full-time team would be numbered 26. Former Red Bull Racing and JR Motorsports driver Cole Whitt was hired to drive the 26, after running seven late season races for the team in 2013. New investor Anthony Marlowe was listed as the owner.[17] The car was sponsored by Speed Stick GEAR in the 2014 Daytona 500, and several other early-season races. Whitt qualified for each of the first eight races, and recorded a single top-20 (at Auto Club Speedway). After Darlington, he No. 26 team was sold to former Swan Racing minority partner Anthony Marlowe, who in turn merged his ownership of the team with BK Racing.[12]

Car No. 30 history[edit]

The team's 2011 car under Inception Motorsports

The No. 30 team made its debut in the 2011 Crown Royal 400 at Richmond International Raceway with David Stremme as the driver, qualifying 16th in their first attempt at competition.[18] Steve Lane was the crew chief. Throughout the season, the team attempted 18 races,[19] but failed to qualify for five, including the 2011 Brickyard 400.[20] Inception Motorsports finished 43rd in the 2011 Sprint Cup Series team owners' standings.[21]

For the 2012 Sprint Cup Series season, the team ran the full 36 race schedule with Stremme driving in all races except the two road course races, where Brian Simo and Patrick Long drove respectively.[22] They made the field on qualifying speeds for the 2012 Daytona 500, taking the third of three guaranteed starting positions for teams not in the top 35 in owner points.[23] The team later acquired the 2011 owners' points from the defunct TRG Motorsports No. 71 team, which had finished 36th in the owner standings and shut down at the end of 2012.[24] The team qualified for each of the first six races of the season, with a best finish of 28th at Las Vegas Motor Speedway,[25] before failing to qualify for the season's seventh race at Texas Motor Speedway. Having failed to reach the top 35 in owners points, the team began to start and park due to a lack of sponsorship, eventually parking in 20 out of 28 races.[26] The team did finish six races and its best 2012 finish was 24th at Indianapolis.

The team's 2013 car at Richmond International Raceway

Following Michael Waltrip's run in the 2013 Daytona 500, Stremme returned to drive for the newly-rechristened Swan Racing, with Tony Eury, Jr. taking over crew chief duties for the team.[27] The team only recorded four top 20s in the first 26 races. Stremme was released following the September race at Richmond International Raceway, being replaced by Cole Whitt for four races.[7] Whitt finished 39th at Chicagoland Speedway. Four-time Chili Bowl Midget Nationals winner Kevin Swindell ran the #30 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway with local sponsor Genny Light,[28] finishing 38th after an accident. Whitt wound up running seven races for the team, while Parker Kligerman started two races at Texas and Homestead-Miami, with sold finishes of 18th and 25th respectively.[29][30][31] Overall, the team had five DNF's all season and failed to reach the halfway point of a race only once, when Whitt crashed at Phoenix in November.

On January 7, 2014, Parker Kligerman, a former development driver for Team Penske and Kyle Busch Motorsports, was confirmed as the driver of the #30 for 2014.[17] Unfortunately, Kligerman struggled mightily through eight races, with a best finish of 29th at Daytona, where he crashed out of the race on Lap 193. He also failed to finish at Phoenix (engine), Auto Club (crash), and Texas (radiator), suffered a non-terminal electronic fuel injection problem at Las Vegas and a first lap wreck at Martinsville. The owners points of the #30 were later sold to Xxxtreme Motorsport with driver J. J. Yeley due to Swan's financial struggles, with the #30 crew following. However, Kligerman will continue to remain under contract.[32]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Inception Motorsports: About the Team". Inception Motorsports. Retrieved June 5, 2012. 
  2. ^ Pockrass, Bob (February 24, 2012). "Trevor Bayne, Tony Raines, David Stremme earn starting spots in Daytona 500". Sporting News. Retrieved 2012-06-07. 
  3. ^ "New ownership team of Swan Racing enters Cup series". motorsport.com. motorsport.com. December 4, 2012. Retrieved 6 November 2014. 
  4. ^ "New ownership team enters NASCAR". NASCAR.com. Turner Sports. December 10, 2012. Retrieved 2012-12-15. 
  5. ^ Former NFL Linebacker Bill Romanowski Joins NASCAR’s Swan Racing
  6. ^ Gluck, Jeff (September 6, 2013). "Swan Racing moves on without David Stremme". USA Today. Richmond, Virginia: USA Today. Retrieved 6 November 2014. 
  7. ^ a b Spencer, Lee (September 6, 2013). "Stremme stunned by impending ouster". Fox Sports. Retrieved 2013-09-07. 
  8. ^ "Swan Racing announces 2014 Cup lineup". NASCAR.com. December 3, 2013. Retrieved December 3, 2013. 
  9. ^ [httl timpe://espn.go.com/racing/nascar/story/_/id/10287224/swan-racing-takes-investor-announces-lineup "Swan Racing Adds Minority Investor"]. ESPN.com. January 13, 2014. Retrieved January 13, 2014. 
  10. ^ Caraviello, David (February 4, 2014). "50 CENT PARTNERS WITH SWAN RACING". NASCAR. Retrieved February 4, 2014. 
  11. ^ Bruce, Kenny (April 17, 2014). "Swan Racing 'reviewing' its current situation". NASCAR. Retrieved April 18, 2014. 
  12. ^ a b Caraviello, David (April 23, 2014). "Swan Breakup Leaves Kligerman Without A Ride". NASCAR.com. Retrieved April 23, 2014. 
  13. ^ "Michael Waltrip to drive for Swan Racing in the Daytona 500". motorsport.com. motorsport.com. January 10, 2013. Retrieved 5 November 2014. 
  14. ^ Michael Waltrip To Honor Sandy Hook Victims In Daytona 500
  15. ^ Associated Press (February 24, 2013). "Daytona 500 Results 2013: Complete Finishing Order". The Huffington Post. Retrieved March 10, 2013. 
  16. ^ Associated Press (January 10, 2013). "Waltrip to enter Daytona 500 with Swan Racing". Yahoo! Sports. Retrieved January 10, 2013. 
  17. ^ a b Swan Racing (January 7, 2014). "Swan Racing Announces 2014 Season Updates". Retrieved January 7, 2014. 
  18. ^ "Montoya claims Richmond pole". Racer. April 29, 2011. Retrieved 2012-06-07. 
  19. ^ "Timothy McSweeney Sprint Cup Owner Statistics". Racing-Reference. USA Today Sports Media Group. Retrieved June 5, 2012. 
  20. ^ "David Stremme 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup Results". Racing-Reference. USA Today Sports Media Group. Retrieved June 5, 2012. 
  21. ^ "NASCAR Sprint Cup Series 2011 Owner Standings". NASCAR.com. Turner Sports. Retrieved 2012-06-07. 
  22. ^ Bigelow, Billy (January 19, 2012). "The Cup Series Adds Another Full-time Team - Sadly It Looks Like a Start-and-Park". The Caledonian-Record. St. Johnsbury, VT. Retrieved 2012-06-07. 
  23. ^ "Edwards leads Roush Fenway Daytona 500 front row sweep". Racer. February 19, 2012. Retrieved 2012-06-07. 
  24. ^ Rodman, Dave (February 27, 2012). "Stoddard persevering, improving in 2012". NASCAR.com. Turner Sports. Retrieved 2012-06-07. 
  25. ^ "David Stremme 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Results". Racing-Reference. USA Today Sports Media Group. Retrieved 2012-06-07. 
  26. ^ Keith, Bryan Davis (May 28, 2012). "Five Points to Ponder: Enough with the Whining and Debris Already". Frontstretch.com. Retrieved 2012-06-07. 
  27. ^ "Eury Jr. to serve as Stremme's crew chief". NASCAR.com. Turner Sports. December 10, 2012. Retrieved 2012-12-15. 
  28. ^ "Swindell to make Sprint Cup debut with Swan". Yahoo! Sports. September 19, 2013. Retrieved September 19, 2013. 
  29. ^ http://motorsportstalk.nbcsports.com/2013/11/04/swan-racings-parker-kligerman-impresses-with-p18-in-nascar-cup-debut/
  30. ^ http://www.yardbarker.com/nascar/articles/kligerman_to_run_homestead_with_swan_racing/15000386
  31. ^ http://www.nascar.com/en_us/sprint-cup-series/drivers/parker-kligerman.html
  32. ^ Associated Press (April 23, 2014). "Swan Racing sells 2 cars, keeps Kligerman in fold". USA Today. Retrieved April 23, 2014. 

External links[edit]