Petty Enterprises Think Merger

The current financial crisis affects not only the world of Formula 1, but also North America's most popular racing series, the NASCAR. The financial difficulties have struck most teams from across the Atlantic, one of them being the oldest outfit in sport's history, Petty Enterprises. While admitting that their commitment with Dodge car manufacturer remains a priority for the upcoming season, the team is now looking to associate their efforts with another outfit for 2009.

“We're very committed to Dodge at Petty Enterprises. If you read the news out there, everybody is talking to everyone about our merger. I've banked with Wachovia all my life when they were First Union before they become Wachovia. As the future unfolds, we all have to be smart on how we pay attention to how we operate and is there ways that we can be more efficient as we grow. That's what will drive the decision of the future,” admitted Robbie Loomis, the team's Vice President for Racing Operations.

Loomis also pointed out that a future merger with another team would help Petty Enterprises grow stronger in their efforts to become title contenders in the years to come. He stressed out that having a 4-car strategy rather than a 2-car one should become his team's target for 2009 and onward.

“I know as I have the last couple years... we kind of saw that we were two cars and we wanted to get to four because years ago, NASCAR said there needs to be a four-car team. Before, a one or two-car team was trying to hook on another two-car team. Now, you're seeing a four-car team and two-car team that want to attach to them and maybe grow to a four-car team to attach to that. The competition level is just raising the bar quicker and quicker,” added Loomis.

The team has recently lost their main sponsor for former Cup and Nationwide champ Bobby Labonte's entry for next season. He is currently 20th overall in the drivers' standings, securing his team a race-to-race entry for 2009. Team's second entry – shared by Kyle Petty, Chad McCumbee and Terry Labonte – is currently outside the top-35 in car-owner standings and is struggling to make the cut in the remaining 4 races of the season.
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