NASCAR Race Weekend Central

2006 Driver Review: Scott Wimmer

Scott “Sometimes taking a ride in the Busch Series is a step up” Wimmer
2006 Ride(s): No. 4 Aero Exhaust/Lucas Oil Chevrolet (Feb.-Sept.)/No. 33 Holiday Inn Chevrolet (Nov.)
2006 Owner(s): Morgan-McClure Motorsports (Feb.-Sept.)/Richard Childress (Nov.)
2006 Crew Chief(s): Chris Carrier (Feb.-Sept.)/Pat Smith (Nov.)
2006 Stats: 24 races, zero wins, zero top fives, zero top 10s, 38th in points.
Best Finish: 12th, Homestead

High Point: After being released by Morgan-McClure Motorsports in September, Wimmer was picked up by Richard Childress Racing in 2007, a deal which included running the final race of the Nextel Cup season at Homestead. Driving the No. 33 Holiday Inn Chevrolet, Wimmer justified the signing by posting his best result of 2006. Starting 24th, he steadily progressed to the front all race long to finish just outside the top 10 in 12th place.

Low Point: In the mid ’90s, MMM dominated the restrictor-plate tracks, scoring back-to-back Daytona 500 victories in 1994 and 1995. They followed that up in 1996 with wins at Talladega and the Pepsi 400. My, how times have changed! What once was their strength is now their weakness. Wimmer and the MMM team failed to qualify for either event, the Daytona 500 and the Pepsi 400, at the World Center of Racing in 2006. At Talladega, Wimmer qualified 43rd and finished 21st in his only start there with the No. 4 car.

Summary: This is another classic case of “the driver is better than the equipment he is given to race.” A lack of a high-dollar sponsor has really hurt the MMM team in recent years, leaving them a few steps behind the competition, a deficit that usually results in a driver merry-go-round. Wimmer lasted longer than most, but it still only took 29 races with lackluster results before Wimmer and MMM parted ways. Luckily, the 30-year-old was young enough to bounce back, picked up off the street by friend Kevin Harvick and RCR for the end of 2006 and beyond.

2007 Outlook: Wimmer will return to Busch Series competition, splitting time with Jeff Burton while driving the No. 29 Holiday Inn Chevrolet for RCR. With five career wins in the series, look for Wimmer to resume his winning ways. He will also compete in two yet-to-be determined Nextel Cup Series events in RCR’s No. 33 Chevrolet.

Grade: D

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