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DATE News (chronologically)
09/15/08
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Yet another NASCAR team to fold
Nationwide Series driver Bobby Hamilton Jr. said Team Rensi Motorsports will close its doors in December if a new sponsor to replace Smithfield Foods isn’t found by then.

Hamilton Jr. is in his second stint with Team Rensi and nearly was without a ride this season until a sponsor was found in early December. Smithfield told the team last Monday it would not return next season, Hamilton Jr. said.

“It’s simple: If they don’t have nothing by December, they’re locking the doors,” Hamilton Jr. said. “That’s for real. They’ve already let people go. They’ve tried to keep as many good people as they could. We’ve already lost several good people because they didn’t know what was going on and they had to have jobs. It’s a bad deal. It’s for real.”

Efforts to reach team president Ronnie Russell were unsuccessful, but a source close to the team confirmed Hamilton Jr.’s statements.

Crew chief Chris Wright remains with the team, though a source said nearly half of the team’s payroll was cut via layoffs.

“The upsetting thing about it all is these guys have been in business for 11 years,” Hamilton Jr. said. “It’s so hard now to get [a sponsor] to look at you unless you’ve got a Cup guy. … It’s a mess.”

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