The Driver Suit Blog-The Vest Project Part 14-Serta Helps Put This Project to Sleep!

49-sertaBy David G. Firestone

This is the final installment of The Vest Project. I know, I’m happy too. I enjoyed this when I started, but now I’m glad it’s over; I promise that you won’t see the word “vest” on this blog for a long time after this post. The three-piece firesuit is a quirk of racing suit design that made sense, but never really caught on.

This last vest is from The Sprint Cup Series, and is the only vest I’ve come across from the Cup Series. It was from BAM Racing in 2006. BAM stands for Beth Ann Morgenthau, the owner of the team. Their racing team started in 2001 racing Fords part time. In 2002, they switched to Dodge, which they raced until they folded in 2008. Their driver lineup included Ken Schrader, 1990 Daytona 500 winner Derrike Cope, and former Truck Series champion Ron Hornaday. Though they had 3 top 10’s with Schrader over the course of three seasons, 2003, 2004, and 2005, they never scored a top 5, or a win.

2006 would be a forgettable year for BAM Racing. Though they tried to start 33 races out of the 36 race season, they failed to qualify for 8 of them, and the ones that they did qualify for. One of the four drivers that raced for BAM was former US Air Force E-3 AWACS Air Surveillance Technician Brent Sherman. As his Air Force career is winding down, Sherman went to the Jim Russell Racing School in Sonoma, California, and eventually won a scholarship to race. He has raced in Indy Lights, ARCA, and NASCAR. He won an ARCA race, the 2006 Hantz Group 200 at Michigan. He raced 6 races in 2006 for BAM Racing, and tried to qualify for two more, with his dedicated sponsor Serta Mattresses. During those 8 races, a crew member wore this Simpson vest.49-sertaIssued to a crew member named B Benton, the vest shows light use.

The collar has no logos on them. The old Simpson warranty label is sewn into the cowl, along with an identification tag stating that the vest is issued to B Benton. Benton is also written on the tag in Sharpie. 49-serta-collar 49-serta-tagThe right chest features a NASCAR NEXTEL CUP SERIES logo, a SIMPSON logo, and a GOODYEAR logo present.49-serta-rchestThe left chest features a BAM RACING logo and a Dodge logo.49-serta-rchestThe front torso has a SERTA logo embroidered in white and yellow in the blue background material.49-serta-flogoThe bottom hems don’t feature comfort straps, unlike Impact vests.49-serta-rhem 49-serta-lhemThe shoulder epaulets feature Simpson logos, but are otherwise unadorned.  49-serta-rshoulder 49-serta-rsleeve 49-serta-lshoulder 49-serta-lsleeveThe back of the vest doesn’t show any real wear.49-sertabThe back of the neck is unadorned, but just below the neck, there is WWW.BAM49RACING.COM embroidered into it.49-serta-neckThe back torso features a SERTA logo above a BAM RACING logo.49-serta-blogo1 49-serta-blogo2That’s it! The Vest Project is officially over! I don’t have to discuss vests anymore! Next Week, I’m going to discuss a form of trophy that all drivers want and often get!

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