By AMANDA VINCENT
Michael Waltrip may no longer be a team owner in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, but the semi-retired driver and NASCAR on FOX broadcaster does have a ride for the Feb. 21 running of the Daytona 500 at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway. He’ll be behind the wheel of the No. 83 Toyota for BK Racing.
“Happy to partner with @BKRacing_2383 @ToyotaRacing @Maxwell_House @AaronsSports to race in my 29th @DISupdates #Daytona500 @NASCAR,” Waltrip (@MW55) tweeted last week.
The one-race deal with BK Racing reunites Waltrip with some former Michael Waltrip Racing employees. He’ll also be reunited with David Ragan, who drove the No. 55 Toyota for MWR for the final two-thirds of the 2015 Sprint Cup season. Ragan recently was announced as a full-time driver, along with Matt DiBenedetto, for BK Racing for the 2016 season.
Waltrip is a two-time Daytona 500 winner, claiming both of those victories from behind the wheel of the No. 15 Chevrolet of the now-defunct Dale Earnhardt Inc. in 2001 and 2003. His MWR Sprint Cup program that began in 2007 was closed at the conclusion of the 2015 season when co-owner Rob Kauffman pulled his financial resources to invest in Chip Ganassi Racing.
Mostly retired as a driver, Waltrip routinely puts his racing helmet back on for restrictor-plate races at Daytona at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway.
Follow Auto Racing Daily on Twitter @AutoRacingDaily or like Auto Racing Daily on Facebook (facebook.com/autorcngdaily). Amanda’s also on Twitter @NASCARexaminer and has a fan/like page on Facebook: NASCAR Examiner.