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Wallace to shutdown NASCAR teamUPDATE Rusty Wallace Racing, which will lose sponsor 5-Hour Energy after this season, is working with potential sponsors on a deal for Steven Wallace, Rusty’s son, to continue racing in the Nationwide Series. RWR also will field a car next year for Michael Annett, who has brought sponsorship to the organization.
5-Hour Energy is leaving the team to sponsor Clint Bowyer at Michael Waltrip Racing, a deal expected to be announced this week.
Team owner Rusty Wallace said Monday that he has no plans to shut down his team and is looking for new sponsors. Wallace said if he can’t run a full Nationwide season with Steven, he would run a partial schedule. He didn’t want to name the sponsors he has commitments from until the formal announcements.
“We’ve got about five of our sponsors under contract,” Wallace said in a phone interview Monday. “I don’t plan on shutting my team down at all. … I might have to slow down a little bit. I can’t put any of my personal money into this thing.
“I’ve already put personal money into this thing, more than I’m feeling comfortable with to keep it going. With that said, I’m not sitting here feeling sorry for myself because 90 percent of the garage area has this problem and my situation is no different.”
While moving to the Sprint Cup Series is the eventual goal for his team, making the move with 5-Hour Energy was not an option, Wallace said.
“They want to go Cup racing, and I’m not in the Cup business right now,” he said. “I told them I’d like to go Cup, but they want to go with a driver that’s already won, somebody that is proven up top. I get that, and [they want] somebody that has got an organization that has been in Cup for quite some time.
“I just couldn’t meet that criteria. So we’re losing them. It’s a big setback, no doubt about that. But it’s not the end of the world. … I’m not a quitter. I don’t quit.”
10/02/11 Rusty Wallace is willing to put his race organization, RWI, "into mothballs" for a couple of seasons until the sponsorship landscape in NASCAR improves. RWI is losing backing from 5-hour Energy at the end of the season and has yet to secure full sponsorship for the teams for next year. 5-hour Energy is expected to sponsor Clint Bowyer at Michael Waltrip Racing in 2012. An announcement is scheduled for Friday in Kansas City. So what happens to RWI's existing NASCAR Nationwide Series teams? "I just want to find a good ride for Steven," Wallace said of his 24-year-old son, who is eighth in the point standings. Wallace added he's spoken with several Sprint Cup organizations that expressed interest in putting Steven in a Nationwide Series car next season. FoxSports
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