Brian Scott to retire after 2016 season – Nascar

RELATED: Driver moves and team changes for 2017

Richard Petty Motorsports announced Thursday that NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Brian Scott will retire from full-time auto racing competition at season’s end.

Scott, 28, began his NASCAR national series career in 2007. He is currently a Sunoco Rookie of the Year candidate in his first year driving team owner Richard Petty’s No. 44 Ford.

In a release provided by the Petty team, Scott indicated that the decision was a personal one.

“This was a difficult decision, but one that I made myself for my family,” Scott said. “Racing and specifically NASCAR has been and will always be in my heart, but right now, I want to turn all my attention to my family and to be able to spend more time with them. Racing has blessed me with great opportunities, and I’m very grateful for everything that it has allowed me to do, but for me, it’s time to move on.

“I can’t thank everyone enough who helped me in my career. I would not have made it to where I am at today without their trust and commitment.”

In a separate release provided by the team, Albertsons Companies announced Thursday that it would cease its sponsorship. The Boise, Idaho-based grocery retailer has been a featured sponsor for eight of the 34 Sprint Cup races this year. Scott, a Boise native, is the great-grandson of Albertsons’ founders.

WATCH: Scott gives a tour of his hometown of McCall, Idaho

In 51 starts in NASCAR’s premier series, Scott has one Coors Light Pole Award and one top-five finish — both coming at Talladega Superspeedway. But this season has been marked by struggles, with five crash-related DNFs feeding a 32nd-place ranking in the Sprint Cup standings.

After posting his career-best second-place effort last month in Talladega’s Hellmann’s 500, Scott acknowledged the adversity in a trying first season at the Sprint Cup level.

“Just trying to get any bit of a bright spot in this year has been difficult,” Scott said Oct. 23 at the Alabama track. “I think that this is by far the brightest spot that we’ve had in a really challenging 2016 for Richard Petty Motorsports. I don’t know, I guess the results and what this does for us going forward is yet to be determined.”

The Petty-owned team indicated that it would field the No. 44 Ford in 2017 with “further announcements” at a later date. The organization underwent significant changes on Aug. 31, temporarily assigning Philippe Lopez and Scott McDougall oversight of the competition department in place of Sammy Johns.

Scott ends his full-time driving days as a two-time winner in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. He prevailed on the mile-long layouts of Dover (2009) and Phoenix (2012).

Scott also competed in six full seasons in what is now the NASCAR XFINITY Series, spending two of those years with Joe Gibbs Racing and three with Richard Childress Racing. He netted 20 top-five finishes and five pole positions over 208 career starts.

“Brian made it to and competed at a level that very few do in NASCAR,” said Brian Moffitt, RPM’s Chief Executive Officer said in the team release. “Brian became part of the Petty family this year, and he committed himself to making our organization better. We feel fortunate to have had the opportunity to get to know Brian and wish him nothing but the best for him and his family.”


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