WWS: SWS: Zach Niessner season review

Niessner and team use NASCAR Touring to gain experience. ROYAL CITY, WA (Sept 18, 2002) -- Zach Niessner and his Wide World of Maps Racing team have spent 2002 racing at many different tracks in different series and gaining valuable experience...

Niessner and team use NASCAR Touring to gain experience.

ROYAL CITY, WA (Sept 18, 2002) -- Zach Niessner and his Wide World of Maps Racing team have spent 2002 racing at many different tracks in different series and gaining valuable experience for the future. Racing in different series has been great for the team, but has also been tough.

"Our biggest challenge has been going to so many new tracks," Niessner said. "We have been to five tracks this year that we have never seen before."

The learning curve for Niessner and the team this year has been very sharp. New tracks, tough competition, and a young driver have kept the team busy with setups.

"Since we have been to so many new tracks, I have really had to learn how to take information for so many types of setups and finding out what works for me," Niessner said.

Even with the challenges, the team has found success this year in the many different series. The team has several top five finishes and a Bud Pole Award this year, but has not been able to earn the elusive first win.

"A win would mean a ton," Niessner said. "I truly expected a win by this time, with the amount of effort we have put in it's got to be just around the corner. But I think I owe my fans and crew a win, they work really hard."

Racing in different series has allowed Niessner and the team to experience different types of tracks, from super speedways to short tracks. They have been able to see some of the premier racing facilities in the United States.

"I really fell in love with Pikes Peak this year. It allows for good racing; its wide, smooth, and the facility is awesome," Niessner said. "But I can't leave out Bristol. I cannot explain that place on paper."

In the past, the team has followed the Raybestos Brakes Northwest Series, but this year they ran in series all over the country, including the Raybestos Brakes Northwest Series, Featherlite Southwest Series, and Hills Bros. All Pro Series.

"It's not that we chose to run different series, it's more like we picked tracks that looked fun and that have good exposure," Niessner said.

Even with a tough schedule and the travel, the Wide World of Maps Racing team has no plans to run one series full time next year. The team will continue to learn and build towards the future.

"Someway or another I will be involved in racing the rest of my life. I love driving, but I also love setting them up," Niessner said.

-zmr-

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