BUSCH: Tim Sauter keeps an eye on son's career

Sauter keeps tabs on son's racing career from a distance. FOUNTAIN, CO (July 21, 2002) - While Tim Sauter builds his racing career in the NASCAR Busch Series, his son, Travis, is starting one back in their native Wisconsin. This weekend, Tim...

Sauter keeps tabs on son's racing career from a distance.

FOUNTAIN, CO (July 21, 2002) - While Tim Sauter builds his racing career in the NASCAR Busch Series, his son, Travis, is starting one back in their native Wisconsin. This weekend, Tim will take to the track in the NetZero 250 at Pikes Peak International Raceway. At the same time, 1000 miles away, Travis will be racing in his third superstock event at Wisconsin Dells Motor Speedway. Sauter would love to be at Travis' side, using his professional racing experience to help teach his son. Unfortunately, conflicting race schedules have forced the elder Sauter to miss all three of his son's races so far this season.

"My wife Chris and I wish we could have been there when Travis made his debut, but we were racing in Chicago," Sauter said regretfully. "The Busch Series has had Saturday night races the past three weeks. We have been on track at basically the same time the past three weeks, so there has been no chance to see him. I am looking forward to August 12 because the Busch Series has the weekend off and I will get to see Travis race."

While absent at his son's first events, Sauter has been instrumental in teaching Travis the tricks of the trade. Travis' superstock racer was built after hours, at the AP Performance Racing Busch Series shop in Mooresville, NC shop by Sauter and his son. The car then made its way to Wisconsin to compete on the state's ultra-tough short tracks. Travis' grandfather, Jim Sauter, a veteran of 76 NASCAR Winston Cup starts, helped put the final touches on the racer.

"Learning how to build the car himself is the most important thing Travis can learn," said Tim Sauter. "In this day and age, that's not necessarily the norm. If you look at the true blue, super-good racecar drivers, they are still the ones who understand how a car is constructed and how it works. They work on their own equipment. I want my son to understand every aspect of racing. I don't have the money to elevate him through the levels like some others do. Travis needs to have success to make the next step. That's the way I was brought up. I watched my dad work hard, struggle and make it. That's the way it's going to be for Travis, too.

"I recommended Travis start his racing career in Wisconsin," Tim Sauter stated. "If you race in the south like North Carolina, the guy with fast time starts on the pole. In the Midwest, the field is inverted and if you are fastest, you start back in the pack. Both places run the same amount of laps, but up there you have to learn how to get to the front without tearing up your equipment."

The newest Sauter in the racing ranks is focused on building a solid career, just like the one his father is building in the Busch Series now with AP Performance Racing. In their first season of NBS competition, Sauter and his No. 19 AP Performance Chevy have become a consistent force on the circuit with five Top-10 finishes. The task has been almost all consuming for Sauter, who wishes he could have more time to participate in his son's young racing career.

"I would have really loved to just build it in our backyard shop, just the two of us," said Tim Sauter. "It has been a hectic year getting the Busch team started. When Travis came down for three weeks to build the car, I didn't feel like I was giving him a fair shake and taking the time to teach him everything. I just wanted to think and talk about the car together as we built it. Fortunately, my dad Jim is picking up where I left off. He helps Travis on setups and even took him to Dells to test last week."

Even though he has been unable to see Travis race, Sauter has been giving his son advice on how to go fast.

"I have been telling him to be smooth and smart," Sauter stated. "Travis needs to talk to the other racers and learn. I told him not to tear the thing up because it isn't any good if it's wrecked. There is no sense in putting pressure on him. We all started racing because it was fun and something to do. I don't want him to be pressured to start at Daytona in 2005. It's not on my agenda and I hope it's not on his."

When the time comes that father and son meet on the track together, Sauter hopes he will be able to deliver a few more lessons, just like his father Jim did for him.

"Oh yeah, my dad beat me bad the first time we raced against each other," said Sauter. "We were racing late models at Wisconsin International Raceway (Kaukauna, WI) and he beat me good. The old man still has it in him today. We saw that a couple of weeks ago when he raced against us in the Busch Series at Milwaukee. Hopefully, Travis will be saying the same thing about me."

Tim Sauter will take the green in the NetZero 250 at Pikes Peak International Raceway Saturday, July 27 at 3:30 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time. The event will telecast live on NBC and broadcast worldwide on MRN Radio. Meanwhile, Travis Sauter will make his career third start that same day at Wisconsin Dells Motor Speedway taking the green flag at 9 p.m. EDT.

For more information on Tim Sauter and AP Performance Racing, please team visit www.timsauter.com.


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About this article
Series NASCAR XFINITY , Stock car
Drivers Tim Sauter , Jim Sauter