Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Remembering Dave Mitchell

Rick Ware Racing’s team has been faced with another tragedy - the loss of Vice President Dave Mitchell, who passed away Tuesday morning at his home in Thomasville, N.C. Mitchell was 44 years old at the time of his passing.

According to Mitchell's bio on Rick Ware Racing's website, Mitchell’s impact on NASCAR will be long-lasting. Initially launching his career, Mitchell also launched the website for a young Ryan Newman. Mitchell’s website tracked Newman’s career through ARCA, Busch and Cup series racing and provided photos and statistical information.

From there, Mitchell began writing articles and race reports on other upcoming drivers, also developing a website that is one of only two to rate developmental drivers across the country, known as Racers Report.

Mitchell’s “big break” came with Penske Racing, working with their driver development program. After two years, Mitchell was offered a position with MacDonald Motorsports Nationwide Series team.

Once at MacDonald Motorsports, Mitchell was tasked with taking a part-time team to a full-time team with driver DJ Kennington. Within a few short months, Mitchell had sponsorship for the team and changed the outlook of MacDonald Motorsports.

In 2009, Mitchell made the move to Rick Ware Racing, becoming the team’s Vice President of Marketing and Competition. In a matter of months, Mitchell and Rick Ware worked to set up a Nationwide team, later followed by a Truck Series team.

Known as the “Biggest Little Team in Motorsports,” a motto that Mitchell coined, by 2010 the Rick Ware Racing organization was operating a part-time car in the Nationwide Series, two full-time Camping World Truck Series teams, along with entries in the K&N East and West, ARCA, Legends and Allison Legacy cars while at the same time still running the AMA Arenacross and motocross seasons.

Together Dave Mitchell and Rick Ware have gone into the record books on several NASCAR firsts and made further history as a team with driver Timmy Hill, who claimed the Rookie of the Year title in the Nationwide Series just over a week ago.

Sadly, this is the third tragedy to befall the Rick Ware Racing organization. Two crew members, Dean Shaut and Stephen Masch, were tragically killed in March following a car accident after the Darlington race.

Although details have not been released, Rick Ware Racing shared this on their Twitter and Facebook page just a short time ago: "We lost a great friend and brother who became part of our family. Please keep Danielle, Morgan and Chase in your prayers. We love you Dave." As further details are announced, we will keep you posted. 

*Skirts and Scuffs would like to extend our deepest thoughts and prayers to the entire Mitchell family and to the Rick Ware Racing organization*

Update: Funeral arrangements have been announced for Mitchell. A viewing will be held noon Saturday, with services following at 1 p.m. at Immaculate Heart of Mary, 4145 Johnson St., High Point, NC 27265 (336-869-7739).

Update: A memorial fund for Mitchell's wife Danielle and their children, Morgan and Chase, has been established at at BB&T Bank. Those interested can go to any BB&T branch and donate, or mail a check made out to Danielle Mitchell, c/o Ware Racing, 111 Sunrise Center Drive, Thomasville, NC 27360. In the memo of the check, you can write the Dave Mitchell Memorial Fund.


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