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Caterpillar ends sponsorship of drag-racing team

Caterpillar pulled the plug on David Powers Motorsports because the National Hot Rod Association team was in over its head and might have collapsed in mid-season.

Racing writer Jane Miller of the Peoria Journal Star interviewed Rod Fuller, one of the team’s top drivers, who finds himself out of a job with the racing season about to begin.

Fuller said he has been contacted by other teams but wants to remain with Caterpillar.

‘I purchased a chunk of Cat stock (last) year,’ he said. ‘I believe in the company and have researched it. I think I know as much about it as any employee and I take pride in that and I’m not ready to walk away from it.’

Let’s hope he bought in October when it was cheap. Gonna be awhile before it gets back in the 80s again.

Growing up in Peoria, I heard a bit of grumbling from Cat folks about a tractor company putting the fruits of their labor to work bankrolling race cars. It’s not like an equipment purchaser in the grandstand is going to see that yellow logo flashing by and say “screw Komatsu, I need me a Cat.”

Looks like this shutdown wasn’t so much about the economy as the missteps of Fuller’s racing team, which is selling off its drag-racing assets.

David Powers Motorsports is selling its Top Fuel and show car program assets. The racing assets include two complete Brad Hadman race cars, 12 sets of cylinder heads, seven short blocks, a 2008 Caterpillar-powered Kenthworth tractor, and Competition Trailerstransporter.

Wow, that would be fun stuff to have, assuming your garage is big enough.

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Tom Mangan posted at 7:54 am January 8th, 2009 |

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