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NASCAR Truck: Mike Mittler passes away

L to R: Carl Edwards, Mike Mittler and Ken Schrader are inducted into the Ozarks Area Racers Hall of Fame in 2018.

By AMANDA VINCENT

Longtime NASCAR Truck Series team owner Mike Mittler passed away Friday after a lengthy battle with cancer. He was 67.

Mittler was a presence in the Truck Series since the series began in 1995. Future Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series stars including Carl Edwards, Jamie McMurray and Brad Keselowski were among the roster of drivers to pilot trucks for Mittler early in their NASCAR careers.

“Lost a dear friend today,” McMurray (@Jamie McMurray) tweeted Friday. “Mike Mittler gave me my first big break in NASCAR. He loved racing as much or more than anyone I have ever been around. I will always cherish the time I spent racing for Mike and his wife Bev.”

Mittler-owned trucks made 301 Truck Series starts. The team came close to a series win with Bobby Pearce behind the wheel of the No. 63 at Eldora Speedway in Rossburg, Ohio, in 2015. Pearce finished second in that race, the team’s only top-five finish. That runner-up finish at Eldora was one of three top-10s for Mittler as a Truck Series team owner.

Keselowski was in victory lane Saturday night at Kansas Speedway after winning the Cup Series race there. He acknowledged Mittler’s contribution to his career after the win.

“I am just thankful to be at this level,” Keselowski. “I never dreamed I would ever be in the Cup Series. I just dreamed of making a living in racing. I worked with guys like Mike Mittler, who taught me the grit and energy and effort you have to have to be successful in this sport. Mike was local to this area, and he passed away yesterday. It hurts to lose guys like that, because they mean so much to me and the sport. I think this was hopefully something he would be proud of.”

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Posted by on May 14, 2019. Filed under Breaking News,Featured,NASCAR,NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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