Carl A. Haas Motorsports is a NASCAR Busch Series and USAR Pro Cup team. It is owned by former crew chief Travis Carter and Carl Haas. The team previously fielded entries in the Winston Cup Series before closing. It returned in 2007 to field a full-time entry for rookie Kyle Krisiloff.
After purchasing Mach 1 Racing from Hal Needham following the 1989 season, Travis Carter Enterprises debuted at the 1990 Daytona 500, as the #98 Chevrolet sponsored by Winn Dixie. Butch Miller was the driver, who finished 22nd. Miller drove the car in 23 races that year, posting one top-ten finish before he was replaced by Rick Mast, who finished out the year and garnered an additional top ten. In 1991, Jimmy Spencer took over as Banquet was the sponsor, and finished 25th in points. Spencer ran just seven races with the car in 1992, before the team suspended operations temporarily.
TCE returned in 1994 as the #23 Camel Cigarettes Ford Thunderbird driven by Hut Stricklin. After posting one top ten finish that year, Stricklin was removed as Spencer returned to the team again. Spencer ran in the car for several years, the big change coming when Winston became the sponsor in 1998. That year, Spencer looked poised for a top-ten finish in points, but injuries kept him from doing that as he was replaced by Ted Musgrave and Frank Kimmel while he nursed his wounds. At the end of the year, Carter announced he would expand his team to a multi-car operation, with three-time champion Darrell Waltrip driving the #66 Kmart Ford and Haas coming on board as a partner. The new team had previously been the #27 owned by David Blair Motorsports. Waltrip amassed the biggest pile of DNQ's he had ever had during his career. In 2000, he retired from the Winston Cup, his lone highlight being an outside-pole qualifying effort at the Brickyard 400. As for Spencer, his team received sponsorship from Kmart as well, and the team changed its number from 23 to 26 in 2000. Waltrip's replacement was Todd Bodine who won three pole positions and finished twenty-ninth in points. After 2001, Spencer departed, and Joe Nemechek signed on the ride. Unfortunately, during the offseason, Kmart went into bankruptcy, and the team's status was in danger. Nemechek ran a mere handful races that year before signing with Hendrick Motorsports, and Kimmel returned to run a few races. Bodine, who had lost his #66 ride despite winning a pole, took over with Discover Card sponsoring the car full-time, with his brother Geoffrey subbing on occasion. The 66 car returned part-time later in the year, with Japanese racer Hideo Fukuyama running a handful of races.
In 2003, HCM merged with minority owner Sam Belnavis to form BelCar Motorsports. The #26 switched to #54 with the U.S. National Guard as sponsor. Bodine struggled, posting one-top ten finish and finishing 31st in points. Fukuyama made an attempt at Rookie of the year honors in the #66, but that was soon aborted due to a lack of funding. At the end of the season, the Army/National Guard and Belnavis left for Roush Racing. Still, the team looked like it might come back. Carter teamed up with a British-based motorsports group called TorqueSpeed. The team was to be known as TorqueSpeed Carter and run a limited Cup schedule in 2004 with John Mickel as the driver. However, this new alliance never saw the track.
In 2004, Carter left NASCAR's top division to focus on mentoring his son Matt Carter who was working his way up the stock car ranks in the USAR Hooters Pro Cup Series. For two years, Carter drove for other teams while under his father's guidance. Carter re-opened Travis Carter Motorsports to field cars for his son. They have intentions of returning to NASCAR's top divisions with Matt Carter at the wheel. In 2007, Travis Carter announced his return to NASCAR with the help of Newman/Haas Racing co-owner Carl Haas, Indianapolis Motor Speedway chairman Mari Hulman George, and Mi-Jack Company founder Michael A. Lanigan. Their driver will be Kyle Krisiloff and they will carry the #14 with ppc Racing's #22's owner points from last year.
- ↑ http://www.usarprocup.com/view_article.asp?id=1701
- ↑ http://fantasyfootball.usatoday.com/content/clubhouse.asp?sport=NAS&majteam=714