Hooters Back In Winston Cup

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With the exception of Speedweeks at Daytona International Speedway in February, Hooters Restaurants has been away from the NASCAR Winston Cup Series as a sponsor for the past six years.

That will change soon, as Hooters controlling owner Robert H. Brooks said in an announcement Thursday that he has begun the process of applying for a number and a license for a Winston Cup team that will be owned and sponsored by the restaurant chain, which is based in Atlanta.

The team won’t run a full-time schedule, but a limited number of Winston Cup races later in 2002 and more in 2003. Brooks is currently exploring properties near Charlotte, N.C., that will house the restaurant chain’s race team.

A driver has yet to be named, as the team is in its planning stages.

Hooters sponsored Alan Kulwicki during his 1992 Winston Cup championship season and was his sponsor early in 1993 when a plane crash took Kulwicki’s life and the life of Brooks’ son, Mark, along with two others.

Hooters is the title sponsor of the Hooters Pro Cup Series and returned to the Winston Cup Series briefly on Kirk Shelmerdine’s Ford at Daytona. Shelmerdine failed to make the 43-car field for the Daytona 500.

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