Mar 30, 2014; Martinsville, VA, USA; NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Parker Kligerman (30) spins during the STP Gas Booster 500 at Martinsville Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports

NASCAR: What Went Wrong With Swan Racing?


Cole Whitt (26) and Parker Kligerman (30). Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

UPDATE – For an update on the current state of Swan Racing please click HERE to be redirected to Beyond The Flag’s live update page. This page will contain all of the latest information on the status of Swan Racing.

End of Update -

NASCAR like most other sports all seems to fall under a golden rule; those who can spend more are able to find more success. Obviously there are exceptions to this rule and I am sure that you can name several right off of the top of your head. However, generally speaking money in sports and especially NASCAR goes a long way. The advantages of a team like Hendrick or Penske because of their financial situation is something that a Swan Racing team would love to have.

Earlier today Swan Racing made the following announcement on their Facebook page.

Swan Racing is in the process of reviewing its current situation and the ability to continue to compete in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. The team has been unable to secure the kind of sponsorship required to effectively operate the team. As a result, the team management is exploring every available option. We hope to be in position to provide a detailed update in the near future.

This should come as no surprise to anyone that follows NASCAR. In a sport where sponsorship dollars rule supreme, it’s a daunting task for smaller teams to sponsor a car for 36 races. Swan Racing has it even harder because they have to sponsor two cars for 36 races. As if a small team fielding two cars wasn’t challenging enough, Swan Racing is fielding two rookie drivers in their first full year of Sprint Cup racing.

Of the above mentioned issues, the fact that Cole Whitt and Parker Kligerman are rookies isn’t exactly that big of a deal. A lot of companies want to be the first to get behind the next big name of the sport or the freshest face. However, it’s got to be hard to sell Whitt and Kligerman when you look at how they have run the first eight races of the season.

Driver
Daytona
Phoenix
Las Vegas
Bristol
Fontana
Martinsville
Texas
Darlington
Cole Whitt2827364018293138
Parker Kilgerman2942403442414030

Between the two of them they have managed to finish inside of the top-20 only once. Couple that with their combined 10 finishes outside of the top 30 out of a possible 16 finishes and it becomes obvious the team isn’t doing well. Earlier this year Beyond The Flag had the opportunity to interview both Whitt and Kligerman. During these interview we learned that both drivers thought that they were auditioning in 2013 for the teams only ride in 2014. Neither driver found out until the end of 2013 that Swan Racing was going to field two cars in 2014.

That decision to field two cars might end up being what does the team in. It’s hard to argue that if they were not splitting all of their time and funds between two cars that the time might be more successful. If they ran one car it would cut their sponsorship worries in half and would allow them to better focus the teams time and energy. This might simply have been an instance where Swan Racing tried to be bigger than they really were and now it’s coming back to hurt them.

The fate of Swan Racing is obviously up in the air. However, if I were in charge I would drop Kligerman and roll the dice on Whitt for the rest of 2014. For whatever reason Whitt is running miles ahead of Kligerman. In eight starts Kligerman has finished 40th or worse a staggering six times. This is not to say that Kligerman cannot race or is a lost cause, but if your team is on the line there comes a time when you need to cut your losses.

In the case of Swan Racing, Kligerman should be the first loss to be cut.

Christopher Olmstead is the Editor of BeyondTheFlag.com on the FanSided Network. Follow us on Twitter @Beyond_The_Flag and “Like” us on Facebook.

Tags: Cole Whitt Featured NASCAR Parker Kligerman Popular Swan Racing

  • me_again

    The bottom line is the current state of NASCAR is that they are forced to start 43 cars for every race but there simply aren’t 43 teams that are willing to spend the money it takes to compete every race.

  • Robby Post

    The strange thing is if you look up their past records…Kligerman is the FAR more decorated and accomplished driver.

    • Craig Huges

      Are you kidding? Whitt won rookie of the year in trucks in 2011, finishing higher than Kligerman. In 2012 after moving up to Nationwide, he finished 7th in the points. When Kligerman moved up to Nationwide, he finished 9th. Even when Whitt was running for Tri-Star, he was able to get 4 top 10s. You know how many top 10s Tri-Star has? 13. Whitt earned Tri-Star just under 1/3rd of its top 10s. Cole Whitt definitely has more talent than Parker.