DENVER, N.C. (Dec. 29, 1999) NASCAR Busch Series Grand National Division team owner Robbie Reiser has hired veteran mechanic Gary Cogswell as crew chief of the No. 17 Visine Chevrolets for the NASCAR 2000 season in the NASCAR Busch Series.
Reiser will also be a NASCAR Winston Cup Series crew chief next season in driver Matt Kenseth's Raybestos Rookie of the Year campaign for Roush Racing. He hired Cogswell to ease the burden of having to worry about preparing two race cars in 21 combination event weekends.
The Visine Chevrolet will be driven by Kenseth and NASCAR Busch Series rookie Jason Schuler, a graduate of the RE/MAX Challenge Series, NASCAR Touring.
Reiser hired veteran crew chief Cogswell for the position just after the conclusion of the 1999 NASCAR Busch Series season. Cogswell was the crew chief for BACE Motorsports, No. 33 Bayer/Alka-Seltzer Chevrolets in 1999, when he worked with a variety of drivers.
"We are a championship-caliber team," Reiser said. "We don't need someone to come in and reinvent what has worked so well over the past three years, and Gary Cogswell was the man we needed."
Cogswell won six times in 1995 as crew chief for Chad Little and continued there through 1996. Little finished second in the standings in 1995 and fifth in 1996. Cogswell moved to Cicci-Welliver Racing in 1997 and won three times with Mike McLaughlin in the NASCAR Busch Series during the 1997 and 1998 seasons. McLaughlin finished fourth in the standings in 1997 and third in 1998.
Reiser says he spends a lot of time with his NASCAR Winston Cup Series team because the NASCAR Busch Series team practically runs itself. Only two men who worked for Reiser Enterprises in 1999 will move to Kenseth's NASCAR Winston Cup Series effort next year. All other members of the No. 17 NASCAR Busch Series team have been with Reiser since he established the current Reiser Enterprises team in the mid-1990s.
"I stop by the shop every evening to see what's going on, but I let them run their own program; and they do it as if I were still there," Reiser said. "I'm a team owner now, and I'm here for guidance and advice when they need me."
As team owner, Reiser has set his goals for the 2000 NASCAR Busch Series season on capturing the owner's championship and winning races with his two drivers. The Visine Chevrolet will compete in all 32 NASCAR Busch Series events in 2000. Kenseth will drive in approximately 20 races and Schuler will drive in approximately 12 races.