Crew Chief Took One Wallace To Title, Looking For Second
Barry Dodson, noted veteran crew chief who helped lead Rusty Wallace to the 1989 NASCAR premier series championship title, has been selected to lead promising young racing star Steve Wallace with his team’s efforts in USAR Hooters Pro Cup Series competition during the 2005 season.
The younger Wallace and his Dodson-led team will compete in a familiar No. 27 Dodge in the Southern Division of the Hooters Pro Cup Series competition. They will be competing in Steve Levitt-built chassis Dodge racecars that will be powered by Maurice Petty-prepared power plants. Wallace will be a candidate in the $90,000 Miller Lite Rookie of the Year Program this season.
“Man, I can’t wait for the season to start,” said the younger Wallace. “We’re putting together a super crew and now we have a great captain and leader for the team in Barry Dodson. He and my dad go so far back and we all have so much respect for what he’s accomplished during his career. With Barry leading our
Steve turned heads when he won the Snowball Derby in 2004 at the age of 17.
team, it’ll almost be like having my dad there working with us week in and week out. We have our sights set on winning the rookie deal and surprising a lot of people by hopefully taking some wins and poles along the way.”
The 2005 Hooters Pro Cup schedule opens on Saturday, Feb. 26 at USA International Speedway in Lakeland, Fla.
Dodson began his illustrious 30-year racing career with Richard Childress in 1971 and has had focal roles in many top teams through the years since. He has been a key team leader at Petty Enterprises, M.C. Anderson Racing, Blue Max Racing, Darwal Racing, Sabco Racing and Ultra Motorsports. He was named a first-team All-Pro crew chief three times and was a recipient of the 1998 Maxwell House True Spirit Award and the 2000 Indianapolis Motor Speedway True Grit Award.
Dodson, a 51-year-old native of Rural Hall, N.C. resides in Mooresville, N.C., with wife Jan. He enjoys golf and fishing and is known for his love of Wake Forest University athletics.
“Barry was so instrumental in helping one kid named Wallace make it all the way to the top and now he’s been given the challenge to take another capable young driver named Wallace up the ladder of success,” said Rusty Wallace, owner of Steve Wallace Racing, in making the official announcement on Wednesday morning. “Barry was watching me when I was just a rookie on the Cup series and he helped get me the Blue Max ride. We’ve been like brothers ever since. There’s nobody I’d trust my kid with more than Barry Dodson and we’re so pleased that he’s agreed to take the reins and lead Steve’s team.”
“Steve is the real deal and I can guarantee you that,” said Dodson, a winner of more than 75 NASCAR events during his career. “They always talk about the apple falling near the tree when sports reporters draw comparisons with father and son athletes. Well, this is a case where the apple didn’t fall near the tree – it hit it. Steve’s shown that he can drive ever since he climbed behind the wheel of that little Bandelero car over at the (Lowe’s Motor) speedway. He’s known how
to drive, but now he’s really learning how to race and that’s where we think we can be the most help – teaching the patience and bridling the great aggressiveness that Steve has.
“We’re going to be really busy this season, but it’ll be so much fun and so rewarding to see Steve mature into a great young racer,” said Dodson, who also served as a television analyst for Fox Sports Net and Speed Channel for a five-year period before his appointment last season as general manager of RWI Racing. “The schedule calls for us to run the 13 regular season southern division races, up to five northern division races and then the five races in the championship series. Rusty and I have already been talking about possibly putting Steve in a Busch car at Memphis and at Phoenix late in the season. But the biggest focus will be getting Steve the seat time in these heavier cars and our big goal is to win the 2005 rookie title.”
Rusty Wallace has tabbed Barry Dodson (left) to head Steve Wallace's efforts in the ProCup Series.