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Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Why is Toyota out of F1, but still in NASCAR? Because they can win.

Anyone who got excited when they heard Toyota was pulling out of Formula 1, thinking maybe a NASCAR exit was next to come, was quickly disappointed.

Toyota Racing Development president Lee White said this week that the Japanese carmaker's decision to get out of Formula 1, a series where it just hasn’t been able to achieve much success, "has no bearing on its NASCAR programme. It (the decision) should have no effect whatsoever on our NASCAR programme, our NASCAR plans and our NASCAR future. We remain completely committed to NASCAR and NASCAR is completely committed to us.”

Why stay in one and not the other? That’s easy: Success.

Toyota has done what a lot of anti-Toyota NASCAR fans feared when it was announced they were coming to NASCAR. They’ve won on all levels.

Toyota has aligned itself with solid teams like Joe Gibbs Racing and Michael Waltrip Racing, put in the money needed to develop its cars, and is being rewarded with solid finishes.

In the Truck series, they have won the manufacturers’ title for the past four seasons and run up front each week. They will claim the Nationwide title this year with Kyle Busch, and the Joe Gibbs Toyotas pretty much own that series on a weekly basis, often battling between each other for the win.
In Cup, they have yet to win a title, but have an impressive number of wins between the Gibbs, MWR and Red Bull teams.

Considering how it all started, the success is amazing. Michael Waltrip’s Toyota was busted for the infamous jet fuel violation, and the Toyota teams struggled to even qualify for many races. Slowly though, things improved, and now they couldn’t be happier with their Cup effort. Solid drivers like Kyle Busch, Joey Logano, Brian Vickers, David Reutimann and Denny Hamlin are among their employees who can bring them wins each weekend.

Sure, Toyota drivers are not challenging Jimmie Johnson for the championship, but neither are any Ford or Dodge drivers. The only drivers close to Jimmie are his Hendrick teammates.

So while Toyota never could never reach the standards set by McLaren and Ferrari in the world of Formula 1, they are on a road to competing for NASCAR titles at the CUp level.

That’s why they’re they’re still in NASCAR, and will not return to Formula 1.


Blogger Danny said...

No way is Michael Waltrip Racing (MWR) a "solid" team. They are 16th Reutimann, 18th Ambrose & 32nd Michael Waltrip in the cup point standings. MWR also fields car 66 a regular start and park and Max Papis who is never a threat. MWR cup win (ONE) was a charlotte where Reutimann won a fluke rain shortened race when he stayed out and won. Joe Gibbs has done decent but MWR-no way

November 12, 2009 at 7:46 AM 
Blogger Matt Myftiu said...

They are no JGR, but MWR is much-improved and on the way to more success. Waltrip's best days were long gone, and Truex may do well in that car this year, and Reutimann and Ambrose had much-improved seasons. I see MWR as a team on the way up, that made big improvements in 2009.

November 12, 2009 at 8:03 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Waltrip's best days were long gone"???? They never were as a driver. So you're a Toyota fan, ok, but the real reason is it's a hell of a lot cheaper to buy your way in nascar then F-1.

November 12, 2009 at 4:28 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just enjoy the races or quit watching them, Grow up all ready

January 29, 2010 at 9:06 AM 

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