David Andrew Stremme
(born in South Bend, Indiana
on June 19
) is a NASCAR
driver. Stremme was a contender for the 2006 Rookie of the Year
award. He is signed by Rusty Wallace Racing
to drive the #64 Atreus Homes & Communities
Chevy in the 2008 Nationwide Series
, and is the test driver for Penske Racing
in the Sprint Cup Series. On September 3, 2008 Penske Racing announced that Stremme will pilot the No. 12 Alltel Dodge (currently driven by fellow South Bend native, Ryan Newman) in the 2009 NASCAR Cup Series.
Former NASCAR Nationwide Series Rookie of the Year, David Stremme, will make his debut behind the wheel of Rusty Wallace Racing’s No. 64 in 2008. After two full seasons in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, Stremme brings a great deal of experience and knowledge to his 64 car teammates. For David, the move to the Wallace squad made a lot of sense.
Said Stremme, “For me growing up, racing was a family business; my mom, dad and brother were all racers. That’s what this team is all about too. The entire Wallace family is involved in the operation of this team, so it really reminds me a lot of where I came from; that’s really rare in this level of racing today.”
Like his team owner Rusty Wallace, Stremme’s racing roots can be traced back to Midwestern short track racing, where David followed in the footsteps originally cast by his Great Uncle in the 1950’s. Stremme’s first stock car victory came in the early 1990’s at New Paris Speedway, while behind the wheel of his mother’s street stock ride. Once track officials realized that David was only 15 years old however, he was forced to temporarily give up driving.
Once he became of legal age, David set the Midwestern short tracks ablaze, earning 24 feature wins, two Rookie of the Year titles and two track championships in just four years. From the local tracks, Stremme became a winner in the Kendall Late Model Series and then, like Wallace, reached the ranks of the prestigious American Speed Association (ASA). 19 years after Rusty Wallace earned the ASA championship, David was named the 2002 ASA Rookie of the Year.
Stremme’s ASA performance caught the eye of Chip Ganassi Racing, who signed David to a development contract for the 2003 season. Splitting time with Jamie McMurray in a Nationwide Series entry, Stremme earned the 2003 Nationwide Series Rookie of the Year award, his second major Rookie of the Year honor in as many years. In doing so, David became the first driver in Nationwide Series history to earn Rookie of the Year honors without competing in the full season.
For the 2004 season, David earned a full-time race seat in the No. 22 Nationwide Series entry. Behind the wheel of the 22 car, Stremme garnered his first Nationwide Series pole position in round 17 at Milwaukee. He went on to earn four top-five and 13 top-ten finishes during the 2004 season, en route to a tenth-place finish in the standings. Stremme remained at the 22 team for 2005, where he collected five top-fives and ten top-tens, on his way to 13th place in the overall standings.
2005 saw the next chapter in Stremme’s career begin, as he made his first-ever Sprint Cup Series start. David finished a respectable 16th place in that event and earned a ride in Ganassi’s No. 40 Sprint Cup Series car for the 2006 season. In 2006, David earned four top-15 finishes, in addition to a pair of top-five starts. 2006 also saw Stremme star in one of the most dominating performances in recent stock car racing history. In a single start for his future team, Rusty Wallace Racing, Stremme led 99 of 100 laps and lapped the entire field en route to victory in the spring 2007 ARCA RE/MAX Series event at Michigan. Back in the Sprint Cup Series, Stremme remained with the 40 car for 2007 and his results continued to improve. He earned three top-ten and eight top-15 finishes en route to a top-25 finish in the final 2007 driver standings.
2007 also saw David compete in a limited Nationwide Series schedule with his old No. 22 team. In 13 starts, David collected two top-five and eight top-15 finishes. He also earned his second career Nationwide Series pole in April 2007 at Nashville Superspeedway. As of the conclusion of his 2007 season, Stremme’s Nationwide Series career included 15 top-five and 33 top-ten finishes in 101 starts. His resume also boasts two Nationwide Series poles.
After signing a driver development contract
with Chip Ganassi
, Stremme started 15th in his Busch Series debut at Nashville Superspeedway
in April 2003
, driving the #1 Dodge for Phoenix Racing
, and finished 7th in the race. He finished 14th in both of his next two starts, before coming to 6th at Nazareth Speedway
. He led 32 laps in that race, which were the first in his career.
He finished 4th after starting 3rd at Nashville in June, and duplicated the result at the Milwaukee Mile. He had a 10th at Kentucky and a 9th at Memphis. Stremme's worst finish that year was a 31st at Dover. Due to a contract obligation, Finch had Jamie McMurray back in the car for the final two races, and Stremme moved to Braun Racing for the remaining two races. Stremme led 48 laps at Rockingham, finishing 5th, and in addition drove the #30 Sport Clips Dodge home in 14th, enough to secure the Rookie of the Year award, despite competing in only 18 of the 34 races.
Stremme raced in the #32 TrimSpa Dodge in 2004. Stremme started 4th and finished 6th in the season opener at Daytona International Speedway. He received his best qualifying effort to that time at Rockingham, starting on the outside pole. Stremme then finished 3rd at Las Vegas and 5th at Darlington. Despite winning his first career pole at Milwaukee, and finishing that up with a second, Stremme's team began to run mid-pack with a handful of top-10s mixed in.
When Braun announced they would put Shane Hmiel in the car, Ganassi made an alliance with FitzBradshaw Racing to put Stremme in the #14 U.S. Navy Chevy (as part of the alliance, FitzBradshaw would switch to Dodges for the following season). Despite a 7th at Memphis, Stremme's next laps would be with the #14 team at Atlanta. At the end of 2004, Stremme's 12th place at Miami secured him a top-10 finish in points.
Stremme drove full-time with FBR in 2005, posting five top-five finishes and finishing 13th in points, when it was announced he would run full-time in NEXTEL Cup.
In 2007 Stremme shared driving duties of the #41 Wrigley Company Dodge Charger in the Busch Series with Ganassi teammate Reed Sorenson. It ran numerous paint schemes including Wrigley's Spearmint, Doublemint, Juicy Fruit, and Winterfresh. He was able to get his second career Busch pole at Nashville but ended up 11th in the race. He also drove the #42 Winterfresh car at Bristol, after it had been rumored that the #42 Busch team would be dissolved and become a Car of Tomorrow testing team.
Stremme will return to the Nationwide Series (which was the Busch Series) in 2008 driving for Rusty Wallace, in the #64 Chevrolet (as Wallace's team switches from Dodge). It will be the first time Stremme is driving a Chevrolet since the end of the 2004 season.
Sprint Cup Series
In June 2005
, Chip Ganassi announced David would go to the Cup series, driving the #40 Coors Light
Dodge in 2006
. Stremme made his Cup debut in 2005 driving Ganassi's R&D #39 Navy Dodge
at Chicagoland Speedway
. He started 31st and would finish 16th in his debut. He also had finishes of 42nd at Richmond and Miami, and a 36th at Charlotte.
In 2006, Stremme had a best finish of 11th at New Hampshire International Speedway and Homestead-Miami Speedway. The team struggled to remain in the top-35 in owners points (guaranteeing a spot in the next race). At the end of the 2006 season, Stremme and the #40 Dodge are locked into the top 35 in owner points, guaranteeing them a start in the first five races of the 2007 season.
Stremme started 2007 starting 6th in the 49th annual Daytona 500 and went on to finish 11th. Three weeks later he would get his best career start, 2nd in the UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. In the Samsung 500 at Texas Motor Speedway he would get his first career Top 10 finish. Two weeks later he would follow that up with a career best finish, 8th in the Aaron's 499 at Talladega Superspeedway.
Stremme was replaced in the #40 Dodge by Dario Franchitti 2008 after the 2007 Indy 500 Champion was signed to drive in Sprint Cup.
David Stremme filled in for Dario Franchitti at Talladega for 1 race only and was running in the front till the "BIG ONE" wiped him out
In 2008, Stremme is signed to drive the #12 car for Penske Racing full-time in the Sprint Cup Series, replacing Ryan Newman who is moving to the #39 car for Stewart-Haas Racing.
Craftsman Truck Series
Stremme has also made one Craftsman Truck Series
start in 2006. Chip Ganassi agreed to a deal with Bobby Hamilton Racing
to let Stremme drive the #04 Dodge Hemi
Dodge in the spring Martinsville
, replacing Scott Lagasse Jr.
. However, that start went poorly. Stremme only qualified 28th and only four laps into the race was Stremme involved in an accident. After replacing the radiator, Stremme's team made laps and finished 32nd. In 2008, David will drive part-time in the #51 Billy Ballew Motorsports truck with Kyle Busch
and Shane Seig