When Brian Vickers was named as the full-time driver of the No. 55 Toyota Camry two weeks ago it was believed Michael Waltrip Racing and crew chief Rodney Childers were in negotiations to stay with the team. Three days ago Childers said he was leaving for Stewart-Haas Racing so today MWR told him he was being replaced on top of the box, effective immediately.
Childers will be replaced by MWR vice-president of competition Scott Miller for the remainder of the season while Billy Scott, a race engineer with MWR since 2008 and exclusive to the No. 55 the past two seasons, will have a bigger hand in the car setup and race preparations.
Childers will take over as Kevin Harvick’s crew chief when he moves to SHR in 2014; however, he will not be able to join his new team until his contract with MWR runs out on Dec. 31.
Miller is the vice-president of competition for MWR and is a 20-year motorsports veteran who played a major role in bringing the team its first two Chase berths last year. Should he remain with MWR and the No. 55 he gets a jump start on 2014 because Vickers will be in that car for all but one race the rest of the season after Mark Martin was released from his contract to take over for the injured Tony Stewart in the Stewart-Hass No. 14 Chevy SS.
Michael Waltrip will drive the No. 55 at Talladega on Oct. 20.