Gas or tires? NASCAR limits truck pit stops
NASCAR is expected to release an amendment in the coming days to the Camping World Truck Series rules for the 2009 season with an emphasis on cutting costs for the owners.
Chief among the changes are limiting teams to 12 members on the road, which includes five on the pit crew (down from seven), multiple sources told FOXSports.com. Because of the crew reduction, the over-the-wall crew will not be allowed to change tires and gas the truck during the same stop.
Also, teams are expected to run two races per engine with the exception of the restrictor-plate tracks.
Given the dwindling truck count from last season — some owners estimated just a dozen fully funded teams — NASCAR has asked teams for feedback.
At the NASCAR Technical Center last week, truck series director Wayne Auton said he was encouraged by the interest in potential teams over the last couple of weeks.
"If you had asked me about (truck count) last month, I would have said we were in a lot of trouble," Auton said. "Well, not necessarily trouble, but we were very concerned for what was going on. In the last week, the phone has been ringing off the hook. We even have four new teams coming in that we hadn't heard of.
"I don't want to say too much, because I know some of them haven't made their announcements yet. But there are some owners that are starting second trucks. So, I'm excited right now. Listening to the owners, I'm optimistic that everything is going to be OK."
Among those who are adding to their operation is Armando Fitz, who announced a truck deal on the media tour. Current truck series owner Jim Harris expanded his operation by adding a team for David Starr. Ditto for David Dollar and Randy Moss, who've bought trucks from the organization formerly known as Bill Davis Racing for Tayler Malsam.
Harris, for one, has been very complimentary of the sanctioning body for its communication with the team owners and for being conscientious about the health of the truck series.
"They've had meetings throughout the winter and stepped up as they saw the economy worsening," Harris said. "They came in with no preconceived ideas and said if someone can identify areas where the series could save money they would be more than willing to listen.
"They're doing whatever it takes to save the show, but we still have to remember that we're here to put on the show."
Good luck on your project.