In October 2006, Michael Waltrip Racing announced that David "The Franchise" Reutimann completed the 2007 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series lineup for the organization. Reutimann will be the full-time driver of the No. 00 Toyota Camry co-sponsored by BURGER KING Corporation and Domino’s Pizza. He will compete for the Raybestos Rookie of the Year honors in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series while also contending for the NASCAR Busch Series championship in the No. 99 Aaron’s Dream Machine Toyota Camry. Reutimann has competed in the NASCAR Busch Series on a limited basis since 2002 and made his NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series debut last season at Lowe’s Motor Speedway.
Being a part of NASCAR’s top two Series, has always been a dream of Reutimann’s, but to have "00" on the side of his NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Toyota Camry makes the reality even sweeter. Reutimann’s family not only has a deep-rooted racing history, but ironically has a last name synonymous with the "00" number. Now, Reutimann begins his own tradition with his family’s fabled number.
The Florida native finished third in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series standings with his No. 17 Team Tundra Racing Toyota fielded by Darrell Waltrip Motorsports and recorded two pole awards (Dover International Speedway and California Speedway), seven top-five and 19 top-10 finishes, which was the most top-10 finishes of any driver in the Series. Reutimann also made 14 NASCAR Busch Series starts and registered four top-10 finishes driving the No. 99 Aaron’s Dream Machine.
During the 2005 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series season, Reutimann recorded his first career victory in his No. 17 Toyota during the Toyota Tundra 200 at Nashville Superspeedway in front of thousands of Toyota dignitaries. In addition to his first win, the Florida native collected two Bud Pole Awards (Bristol Motor Speedway and Homestead-Miami Speedway), six top-five and nine top-10 finishes en route to finishing 13th in the points standings. Other highlights for Reutimann that year include a second-place finish at Memphis Motorsports Park, a pair of third-place finishes at Kansas and Kentucky Speedway and a pair of fifth-place finishes at Dover International and Texas Motor Speedway.
In his first year of NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series competition, the 2004 Rookie of the Year amassed two Bud Pole Awards (Atlanta Motor Speedway and Homestead-Miami Speedway), four top-five finishes and ten top-10 finishes. Reutimann’s first career pole at Atlanta was also Toyota’s first in the Series. Reutimann’s best finish of the season was a pair of third-place finishes at Atlanta Motor Speedway and Texas Motor Speedway. Reutimann finished fourth in the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway and 14th in the points standings.
Making a home in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series was easy for the third-generation driver, but he attributes much of his success to his legendary father – Emil "Buzzie" Reutimann. His father took the DIRT world by storm winning events all over the Eastern seaboard and he still continues to race today. Reutimann followed in his father’s footsteps driving Modifieds and Late Models at dirt and paved tracks on Friday and Saturday nights growing up and it was only a matter of time before he made a name for himself.
In 1997, Reutimann transcended to the NASCAR AutoZone Elite, Southeast Series and received Rookie of the Year honors. The three-time Southeast Series winner finished as high as second in the 2002 championship points standings.
That same year, the Zephyrhills (Fla.) native ran his first of four NASCAR Busch Series races in a car owned by Joe Nemechek thanks in part to help from a childhood friend – Brian Pattie. Reutimann finished 16th in his debut at Richmond International Raceway and went on to finish in the top-15 twice that season.
Reutimann collected two top-fives and three top-10s for NEMCO Motorsports in seven NASCAR Busch Series starts in 2003. He also earned his first career Busch Series Bud Pole Award at Memphis Motorsports Park after qualifying the No. 7 car for Greg Biffle. After posting the fastest time, Reutimann was able to say on national television that he was looking for a full-time opportunity and that he was out of a ride. Soon after, Reutimann received a call from Darrell Waltrip asking him to drive his No. 17 Toyota Tundra. The story continues, but with another Waltrip – Michael Waltrip.