Share This Post

DeliciousDiggGoogleStumbleuponRedditTechnoratiYahooBloggerMyspaceRSS

Does ThorSport Racing’s departure signal the gradual departure of Toyota from Truck Series?

No. 88 ThorSport Racing Toyota of Matt Crafton (photo courtesy of Getty Images for NASCAR)

No. 88 ThorSport Racing Toyota of Matt Crafton (photo courtesy of Getty Images for NASCAR)

Was the announcement of ThorSport Racing and Toyota parting ways on Tuesday a sign of a Toyota gradual exit from the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series? The writing on the wall sure gives that impression. And if Toyota is backing away from the series, is the spec engine to blame?

Members of the Toyota camp have been the most vocal in their criticism of the spec engine built by Ilmor Engineering, based on a Chevrolet engine, that was tested multiple times by Chevrolet team, GMS Racing, in 2017. The engine will be an option for Truck Series teams this year and is expected to be the mandated engine next year.

Toyota multi-truck team, Red Horse Racing, shut down fairly early during the 2017 season, leaving Kyle Busch Motorsports and ThorSport Racing to carry the Toyota banner, along with the single-truck Hattori Racing Enterprises team that had Ryan Truex as its driver last season and a few other small, underfunded teams. Truex did end the 2017 season ninth in the driver points standings, but the No. 16 Hattori entry failed to end the year in the top-10 of the owner standings. That left KBM and ThorSport entries as Toyota representatives inside the top-10.

As I’ve already mentioned, ThorSport has departed the Toyota camp, leaving Kyle Busch Motorsports. But during all the hubbub surrounding the new spec engine, Kyle Busch hinted he would take his team out of the Truck Series if the engine became the mandated engine without Toyota support. So, is the end of KBM in the Truck Series coming? If the team owner’s remarks are any indication, maybe. After all, why would Toyota provide financial support for the purchase of an engine it didn’t manufacturer? And considering Toyota’s criticism of the engine, I’m guessing support of the engine is unlikely.

Busch claims that he wouldn’t be able to afford to continue fielding trucks in the series without the engine support it receives from Toyota. Red Horse Racing is gone, ThorSport Racing isn’t out of the Truck Series but has left Toyota. Will the series be without KBM in a few years? Chances of that are pointing to possibly.

That brings me around to this question: What does the future of Toyota in the Camping World Truck Series look like? Answer: Not good.

Follow Auto Racing Daily on Twitter @AutoRacingDaily or like Auto Racing Daily on Facebook (facebook.com/autoracingdailyonline).

Share This Post

DeliciousDiggGoogleStumbleuponRedditTechnoratiYahooBloggerMyspaceRSS
Posted by on January 17, 2018. Filed under Blog by Amanda Vincent,Featured,NASCAR,NASCAR Camping World Truck. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

Leave a Reply