GERMANTOWN, Tenn. – official release — Julia Johnson photo — One of the most storied careers in all of professional dirt racing has come to a close, save for one event a year, as Sammy Swindell announced today he has decided to retire from professional racing effective immediately.
Swindell, who has driven for Big Game Motorsports the past four years of his 40-plus year career, isn’t planning to race again outside of the Chili Bowl Nationals.
“After the last two weeks of our break from racing I have decided to retire from racing. I would like to still drive my midget at the Chili Bowl. I have been thinking a lot about this for the last three months. It has been a hard decision to make. I always knew when the time came to retire it would be clear. I’ve had a long and very successful career. Part of the reason for the timing now is I’ve spent the last two weekends with my son, Kevin, racing. I haven’t had any time to spend with his racing the last four years. He will drive a (NASCAR) Nationwide car for the rest of the year and I want to be there to support him. I was going to do a limited schedule next year or retire at the end of this year. I’ve had a long talk with (Big Game Treestands Founder) Tod Quiring and we both agreed that this is the best for me.
“Amy and I would like to thank Tod and everyone at Big Game Treestands for the last four seasons. We would also like to thank everyone who has helped or been a part of my career, my fans and the friends that I have met over the last 43 years.”
Swindell has one of the most well-rounded racing careers at any level. While he had stints in NASCAR and IndyCar, Swindell made a name for himself on dirt race tracks across the country.
He earned three World of Outlaws STP Sprint Car Series championships and he ranks second in career wins – 294 – with the premier sprint car series.
Swindell has also claimed almost every major sprint car event, including the Knoxville Nationals, Gold Cup Race of Champions, Kings Royal, Williams Grove National Open, Don Martin Memorial Silver Cup, Selinsgrove Open, Western World Championships and Syracuse Super Nationals to name a few.
Additionally, Swindell won an unprecedented two World of Outlaws features on the same day in 1991 and he picked up victories at Bristol Motor Speedway when it was covered in dirt in 2000-01.
Also, his five Chili Bowl victories are the most for any driver at the famed midget event.
Swindell, who was elected into the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame in 2006, started racing when he was 15-years-old. Two years later he began a sprint car career that has culminated in more than 600 feature victories and at least one win in every season.