As expected Michael Waltrip Racing (MWR) announced that Mark Martin will drive 25 Sprint Cup events in 2012 and 2013 in the #00 Aaron’s Dream Machine including the Daytona 500. Michael Waltrip will drive five additional events. The rest of the restrictor plate races and the race at the Kentucky speedway. That leaves about six races where the #00 will not run or they could get a single event sponsor and a different driver. What is the thinking behind MWRs action?
First, MWR now has a real veteran of the sport with great experience available at its pleasure to help direct, mold and shape it into a power house team. No one person like Mark Martin would be able to fit that description. This is a must do for MWR in order for their teams to get to the next level.
Second, Having Michael Waltrip running the restrictor plate races, arguably one of the best restrictor plate racers and Mark Martin running most of the other races, takes this tandem from two guys running the Aaron’s Dream Machine to the Dream Team running the Aaron’s Dream Machine.
Third, Having Clint Bowyer as a team mate, the most recent winner of a restrictor plate race, guarantees a quality drafting partner for Michael Waltrip and Mark Martin. A must have in the age of Two Car Tandem drafting.
Fourth, The Wood Brothers #21 car has run only 16 races this season and is currently 38th in points only 140 points from 35 and guaranteed a starting position every week. This Dream Team could very easily be in the top 35 next year, without running any more races than already scheduled. Though in the loss of four full time teams that are in the top 35 in points, and it is all but assured.
All around this looks like a really great move for Michael Waltrip Racing.