Martins Motorsports ceases NCWTS operations

Barry Cantrell/NKPPhoto

By Caleb Whisler, Staff Writer

Through social media, Tommy Joe Martins has announced that his Martins Motorsports team in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) would be ceasing operations effective immediately.

“It was without a doubt one of the toughest decisions I’ve ever had to make. Without a doubt, the biggest bummer that I have ever had to deal with in racing. This decision was about family. My family has made a very large investment into my racing career and into forever. These two things were tied together. Martins Motorsports and Tommy Joe Martins were the same thing. It was the only chance I had at racing,” said Martins on Periscope.

Martins Motorsports was unable to find a driver and sponsorship to continue racing in 2018. According to Fronstretch, Martins Motorsports had handshake deals with two drivers but they ultimately fell through. The Martins family was expecting to foot the bill but would have a loss of $300,000 to $400,000 throughout the season, a loss they were not ready to take.

“Faced with the upcoming season, my family and I knew that without a commitment from a driver or a sponsor, that we were going to have to foot the bill for this thing all over again. “Even though we are a small team, we were projecting a large loss somewhere around three to 400 thousand dollars to run the year that we wanted to. With that in mind, it was a pretty easy decision for us to shut this thing down now before we got going,” said Martins.

“It is impossible for this business to operate in the green without additional revenue. Without any commitments from drivers or sponsors, that was just not going to happen. We were not going to lose the amount of money we had lost in 2016 and also had lost this year in sustaining this thing. We weren’t prepared to lose that again as a family. It’s a bummer but I know this was the right decision for my family and my families future.”

Having to tell his team that the organization was shutting down, was the thing that Martins hated the most. The organization was expecting to have the best season for the organization due to the addition of the Ilmor Spec Engine in the NCWTS. The team already had one in their truck in preparation for an upcoming test at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

“We were in a position, without a doubt, to have the best runs we ever had in the Truck series. We had improved our motor program quite a bit. We had gotten a couple of those spec motors. We already had one in our truck. We were full-blown prepared to try to go to the test at Charlotte Motor Speedway and really try to step our program up,” Martins stated.

The organization has competed in 32 races in NCWTS competition and 11 races in NASCAR XFINITY Series competition. The team has fielded entries with Martins, J.R Heffner, Austin Wayne Self, Brandon Brown and Matt Mills. The team has run in both series on a part-time schedule since 2009.

Martins Motorsports joins Brad Keselowski Racing and Red Horse Racing as NCWTS teams that have ceased or suspended operations in 2017.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *