This time last season MWR had no cars in the top 35. In fact their only hope of having a car in the top 35 was DJ and he was wrecked early in the Bristol race by Matt Kenseth. But look at where they are today. After the Bristol MWR has all 3 cars in the top 35. I won't say comfortably but they are in. The 00/44 of David Reutimann is in 26th, the 55 of Michale Waltrip is in 30th and the 44/00 of Mike McDowell is in 34th. This team worked hard and without a doubt has benefitted from Joe Gibbs Racing coming to Toyota.
But I also would like to say that it took more than Joe Gibbs racing to put these cars in the top 35. It took a lot of hard offseason work, It took the beliefs of the Drivers, the sponsors, the people in the shop and yes a little luck with qualifying being rained out twice. But most of all it took Michael to give it his all.
This team may have cost Michael his marraige, I hope not but indications are him and Buffy may be splitting. But Michael has overcome a lot of adversity since he took on the quest to have his own team. He had the Daytona Fisco last year, the rumors that NAPA and UPS were going to drop thier sponsorship. Finding an individual to help fund the team and overall poor performances last season.
Although I do not expect MWR to become a force with HMS, JGR, RR and RCR within the next couple of years I do believe that Michael can build his team to be a contender and be a force in NASCAR within a few years. All new teams started out with some rough spots, but no team has started out with a new manufacture to the sport and had to deal with a qualifying rule that sets 35 of 43 positions before the race starts that MWR has had to deal with. Let's hope this is the beginning of a long run in the top 35 and that MWR can continue to make strides this season to a top 20 position.