My guy is leaving NASCAR.

Bobby Hamilton is taking over the Tide Ride next year and

Ricky Craven is out.

Ricky Craven is “my” guy – basically just because he’s from Maine. AFAIK, he’s the one New Englander in NASCAR. I’ve been to Moosehead Lake where he resides/hangs out many times.

He’s a nice guy – every winter he participates in a Snowmobile ride for charity up in Maine. He was born in the town my aunt lives in.

He was in a bad accident many years back but Cal Wells gave him a shot and he was an all right driver for him. He’s driven 3 models of car in the last 3 years so I think it’s been hard for his team to achieve consistency.

But, he’s also not the worlds greatest driver and is having a VERY lousy, frustrating year. Although last year he won at Darlington in what was (and still is) the closest finish ever in a NASCAR race.

It’s conceivable that another owner would give him a shot, but not likely. Nowadays, the trend is towards youth and Ricky’s not going to do anything for anyone coming in as a 38 year old.

Especially not when on top of Bobby Hamilton being ready, it looks like Kyle Busch and Martin Truex Jr. are pretty close to being ready to come up.

Anyway, sayonara Ricky.


I’m sorry for your loss. Nice guys just can’t seem to catch a break (see Johnny Benson). Hopefully he’ll catch on somewhere, or maybe give Busch a go until something pans out.

Yeah, Ricky’s one of the good guys. He’ll probably get a ride somewhere, he’s a decent driver.

Do they have to put the blocks on the pedals so Hamilton Jr can reach 'em? :smiley:

I don’t think so. If you’re Dale Jarret or Bill Elliott, maybe you can start a new ride at 38. But there’s too many young guys right now that can probably come up.

And, he’s not a great driver. I think he’s lost some nerve, some ability to really keep the hammer down race after race. Maybe it’s just the machinery – I think the last three years they’ve gone from Ford to Pontiac to Chevy and they never seem to have the car locked in. That’s one of the drawback of being a single-driver team, too. I hope that doesn’t hurt Hamilton too much.

And, I don’t know if he’s dying to stay with it. From all indications, he just loves chillin’ on Moosehead lake in Maine with his wife and kids.

But we’ll see.

He’ll have to sit on a phone book.

I actually like that chubby little guy. I could think of worse replacements. I’ll still be pulling for the Tide chevy, I’m sure.