Dec 20, 2013, 5:00 PM EDT
Billy Scott will be the man atop the pit box for the No. 55 Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota and driver Brian Vickers in the 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship. Scott, an MWR member since 2008, has served as the lead engineer for the No. 55 car over the last two seasons.
“I’m honored, but I also know this is a big responsibility,” Scott said in a team release. “We have very high expectations for the Aaron’s Dream Machine in 2014. Brian has been incredible to work with and is a winner, so we can’t wait to get 2014 started.”
In his comments about Scott’s appointment, team co-owner Michael Waltrip said that he was the “unanimous selection” of the MWR crew, drivers, and ownership for the job.
“We feel like engineering is one of our strongest assets and with that type of talent in house, it was easy to promote from within,” Waltrip said. “Billy has earned this opportunity because he has helped develop and refine the engineering tools that we use every day to make our cars faster.”
Vickers, then in a part-time role with MWR, took the No. 55 to Victory Lane in July at New Hampshire Motor Speedway and in August, he was named the No. 55′s full-time driver starting in 2014. But in October, he was forced out of the car and missed the remainder of the season after being put on blood thinners for a clot in his right leg.
Still on course to recover in time for the Daytona 500 in February, Vickers was pleased with MWR’s decision, saying that Scott has “demonstrated a strong knowledge of what makes these cars go fast.”
“I have a lot of faith in Billy,” Vickers said. “This is one of the strongest teams I’ve had and that’s a great feeling heading into a new season.”