Shawna out, Ron in the BAM car?



Not definite, but probable. Can't really imagine why Ron would want the spot, but so it goes.

From the Philadelphia Inquirer

Winston Cup's lone female driver wonders where her car has gone
By Pete Schnatz

Shawna Robinson is the only woman driver competing in NASCAR's Winston Cup Series, and last season she became the first female to finish a race in more than two decades.

The question now, however, is: How much longer will she have a job?

Although team officials have not confirmed any driver change, Robinson revealed in a phone interview yesterday that she may have taken her last ride in the No. 49 Dodge Intrepid.

Ron Hornaday Jr., who replaced Robinson at two races earlier this season - failing to qualify for one and needing a provisional to make the other - is ticketed to drive BAM Motorsports' entry in the Aug. 4 race in Indianapolis.

Both drivers were at the Brickyard for test sessions last week, but according to Robinson, "Ron was in a car built for Indy; I was testing a car not made for Indy.

"I'm extremely frustrated," she said. "The owners are very good people and they've given me a great opportunity, but I just don't know where I stand with the team at this point."

The 2002 Winston Cup season began on a bright note for the 37-year-old racer.

Starting fresh with the newly formed BAM Motorsports, which is owned by Beth Ann Morgenthau and her husband Tony, Robinson turned in a career-best finish of 24th in the Daytona 500.

But in running a limited schedule, the team has been unable to secure primary sponsorship. Robinson noted that "things keep breaking on the cars," and admitted that she had just discovered on the Internet that BAM recently hired its third crew chief of the season.

"When we sat down in December to plan for the season, the plan was to run 24 races. We were going to start off slowly and build up to September, then run the rest of the races," Robinson said.

"Our goal was for me to qualify and to learn. At this point, I don't know what I've done wrong. Evidently they're unhappy, so I've been in and out of the car. I don't know what my plan is now."

Through the first 19 races of the 2002 campaign, Robinson has started seven. Her average finish of 37th includes four finishes of 40 or worse in a 43-car field. Over the last nine events, Robinson competed in one race - the Pepsi 400 on July 6 - and finished 40th.

She is 47th in driver points and has posted $425,469 in winnings this season.

Robinson made headlines last season when Michael Kranefuss, who previously partnered with Roger Penske as owners of a Winston Cup car driven by Jeremy Mayfield, signed the female driver for a limited number of races. Robinson failed to qualify for three Winston Cup races and finished 34th in another, becoming the first woman since Janet Guthrie in 1980 to complete a race in NASCAR's top series.

Kranefuss pulled the plug on the team when he was unable to secure sponsorship for the car.

Robinson believes that she has been stereotyped at times, especially when she gets emotional in the midst of an argument over the car's setup.

"If I cry, it means I'm too weak to compete in this sport. That's bull," she said.

"If I say, 'I need a crew chief who works with me, I need a crew chief who has confidence in me, I need a crew chief who believes that when I get in the race car I can get the job done,' then it's interpreted as, 'The girl needs to be loved everyday.' "

Robinson holds no grudge against Hornaday, saying, "He's just doing his job. In fact, Ron's been very helpful in trying to get this team in the right direction."

Because she is under contract with BAM Motorsports through the end of next season, Robinson is going to do what she is asked to do. In the last month, she said, she has been to New York three times trying to secure sponsorship.

If she is released, Robinson will pursue a deal to possibly return to the Busch Series next season.

"This definitely is not the end of me. I'm not sure what's happening right now, and I don't really understand it," she said.

"But I'm a racer, that's what I've always been. I just want someone to put me in a car and leave me there."
Someone ought to give her a chance in an established ride, with quality equipment and then let's see if she can run with the "boys" Put her in one of Gordon's old cars or some other high caliber team and see what she can do. That's the only way anyone would be able to tell if it is the driver or the car. I'll be the first to admit I had reservations about a female driving Winston cup but after reading some of the news on this this lately it would appear that Shawna hasn't been given a fair shot. I have a feeling we may never actually get to see if she can compete.
I think Shawna should get out of that ride before it's too late. It might be too late already.
I agree that that car is horrible and she is not getting a fair shot at all. I think she can drive look at how she did in the 84 car last year she always had fast cars but it kept breaking, or rain would canncel quals so she would miss the race. I would like Mikey put her in one of his cars again and see what she will be able to do in that car not not as good as kenny did but maybe she would surprise us all.
I think that any driver with a little expierence can drive a car well if the car underneath them is capable. BAM, will be out of $$$ by seasons end if not sooner. Or are they already?
I'm beginning to wonder who used who to get to Winston Cup.

Seems to me that BAM was hoping the female angle would pay off for them and it hasn't. Don't look for Ron to do any better than Shawna.

And expect to see a whole lot more backmarkers and lapped cars next year too. The big money boys are squeezing the compertition right out of the game.
I still say she came to WC too soon. The team just isn't WC caliber. Go back to BGN, get at least 2 good seasons, ie. running up front all the time, and then try Cup.
Originally posted by TexasRaceLady
I still say she came to WC too soon.   The team just isn't WC caliber.  Go back to BGN, get at least 2 good seasons, ie. running up front all the time, and then try Cup.

You hit it on the nose, the "Team" isn't WC caliber, get some experience in there, as well as some $$$$ and see how she runs. If they are looking for someone with some experience I may be able to make some time to help them out :D I have watched a ton of racing on ESPN, the coverage was excellent, you would be suprised at what you can pick up... :)
Hey, Mlite...isn't that how Cole Trickle got his start in Days of Thunder? ;)
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