Mike Skinner (NASCAR)


Mike Skinner (NASCAR)

Infobox NASCAR driver
Name = Mike Skinner


Birthdate = birth date and age|1957|6|28
Birthplace = Susanville, California | Previous_Year = 2007
Prev_Cup_Pos = 65th
Best_Cup_Pos = 10th - 1999 (Winston Cup)
Cup_Top_Tens = 39
Cup_Poles = 6
First_Cup_Race = 1986 Sovran Bank 500 (Martinsville)
First_Busch_Race = 1987 Country Squire 200 (Darlington)
First_Busch_Win = 1999 Yellow Freight 300 (Atlanta)
Last_Busch_Win = 1999 Yellow Freight 300 (Atlanta)
Last_Busch_Race = 2006 Ford 300 (Homestead)
Busch_Wins = 1
Busch_Top_Tens = 16
Busch_Poles = 3
Truck_Team = #5 - Bill Davis Racing
Previous_Year = 2007
Prev_Truck_Pos = 2nd
Best_Truck_Pos = 1st - 1995
Truck_Wins = 25
Truck_Top_Tens = 112
Truck_Poles = 43
First_Truck_Race = 1995 Copper World Classic (Phoenix)
First_Truck_Win = 1995 Copper World Classic (Phoenix)
Last_Truck_Win = 2008 Qwik Liner Las Vegas 350 (Las Vegas)
Achievements = 1995 Craftsman Truck Series Champion
Awards = 1997 NASCAR Winston Cup Series Rookie of the Year
Updated_On = October 4, 2008

Mike Skinner (born June 28, 1957 in Ontario, California) is a NASCAR driver from Susanville, California now living in Daytona Beach, Florida. He currently drives the #5 truck in the Craftsman Truck Series for Bill Davis Racing. He is the father of Jamie Skinner, a former NASCAR competitor, and Dustin Skinner, who is a development driver for Key Motorsports.

Early career

Skinner began racing at Susanville Speedway in the 1970's in a Plymouth Road Runner at various California dirt tracks, winning three championships. He soon moved to North Carolina and worked as a crew member for Rusty Wallace and at Petty Enterprises. In 1986, he made his NASCAR debut in the Winston Cup Series, driving the #19 Pontiac for the Zanworth Racing Team, and had a best finish of 22nd in three starts. The following year, he made his Busch Series debut at Darlington Raceway, finishing 27th in the #0 Hunt Tire Oldsmobile. He did not compete in NASCAR again until 1990, when he drove the #13 Glidden Paints Buick Cup Series car for Mansion Motorsports at North Carolina Speedway, finishing 35th with rear end failure. He ran four races for Dixon over the next two years, before running one race in 1993 for Jimmy Means.

In 1994, Skinner began racing late models for Gene Petty, and won a local track championship. He and Petty also began racing in the Busch Series in the #88, winning one pole in the Kentucky Fried Chicken Chevrolet, but failing to finish a race.

RCR

Skinner was selected by Richard Childress Racing to drive the #3 GM Goodwrench Chevrolet Silverado in 1995, the inaugural season for the NASCAR SuperTruck Series. He won the first race in the Series, and collected 7 more victories en route to winning the first championship in series history. He equalled his win total the following season, but fell to 3rd in the standings. That year, he ran 5 races for Childress in the Winston Cup Series, qualifying in the top-ten 3 times and having a best finish of 12th in the #31 Realtree car. He also filled in for teammate Dale Earnhardt when Earnhardt was recovering from injuries suffered in a wreck.In the 1997 NASCAR Winston Cup season, Skinner was promoted to full-time, driving the #31 with Lowe's sponsorship. He won poles at both of the season's races at Daytona International Speedway, and had 3 top-ten finishes. Despite failing to qualify for one race and a 30th place points finish, he won the Rookie of the Year award. He had nine top-tens his sophomore season, but finished 21st in points after being forced sit out three races due to injury. He also won a pair of exhibition races in Japan during those two seasons, when NASCAR raced in Asia for the first time. He finished no worse than sixth in the first four races of the 1999 NASCAR Winston Cup season, and held the points lead briefly during the early portion of the season. He had a total of 14 top-tens and ended the year a career-high 10th in points. He also returned to the Busch Series, driving the #19 Yellow Freight Systems Chevy for Emerald Performance Group. He won his only career race at Atlanta after being disqualified for a rules infraction, before NASCAR overturned its decision.

Skinner had eleven top-tens in the 2000 NASCAR Winston Cup season, but fell to 12th in points and lost crew chief Larry McReynolds. In the 2001 NASCAR Winston Cup season, he had only one top-ten and suffered severe injuries in a wreck at Chicagoland Speedway. He was forced to miss the next 5 races, and returned for a limited schedule, but was released near the end of the season.

2002-Present

Skinner signed on to drive the #4 Kodak Chevy for Morgan-McClure Motorsports in the 2002 NASCAR Winston Cup season. He only had one top-ten finish and finished 31st in points at season's end. He continued to struggle when the team switched to Pontiac in the 2003 NASCAR Sprint Cup season, and after failing to qualify for the Sirius 400, he was released. He spent the majority of the season running part-time in the Truck Series for Billy Ballew Motorsports before being selected to fill in for Jerry Nadeau at MBV Motorsports. His final race of the season came at Homestead for Michael Waltrip Racing.

In 2004, Skinner returned to the Truck Series to drive the #42 Toyota Tundra for Bang! Racing. He was running 9th in points when conflicts between Toyota and Bang's owners caused the team to split and run the #5 for Bill Davis, where Skinner has been ever since. He won 2 poles and finished the year 11th in points with no victories. He collected 2 wins in 2005 and finished 5th in points while running a part-time Cup schedule for Davis and R&J Racing. He won only once in 2006 and fell to 10th in points, while filling at FitzBradshaw Racing, Front Row Motorsports, and CJM Racing. In 2007, he won 5 races and fell short of winning the championship by 54 points.

Skinner is under contract to drive for Davis through 2009. He also ran a part-time schedule in Sprint Cup, filling in for A. J. Allmendinger at Team Red Bull. Skinner will run a couple more races in 2008 in the #84 Red Bull Camry, as Allmendinger will not be back in the car in 2009. Skinner was hired by Michael Waltrip Racing to drive the #00 Champion Mortgage Toyota Camry in the Sprint Cup Series for 3 races: Michigan, Bristol, and Auto Club Speedway (Fontana, CA).

External links

* [http://www.mikeskinner.com/ Official website]
* [http://www.racing-reference.info/driver?id=skinnmi01 Career statistics at racing-reference.info]


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