Scroll down to view past ARCA Racing Series news and rumors.

February 2018

  • Sioux Chief continues sponsorship of Short Track Challenge: Officials from the Automobile Racing Club of America (ARCA) and Sioux Chief Manufacturing have jointly announced that the rough plumbing components manufacturer has extended its support and sponsorship of the ARCA Racing Series Short Track Challenge for 2018. Sioux Chief Manufacturing first partnered with ARCA Racing Series presenting sponsor Menards in 2015 as the race entitlement sponsor at Lucas Oil Raceway. The business-to-business relationship between Menards, the country’s third largest home improvement retail chain, and Sioux Chief, a leading rough plumbing manufacturer and supplier of cutting-edge products for plumbing and mechanical contractors, brings opportunities for Sioux Chief to promote its products to the Menards contractor customer base. "Sioux Chief is pleased to extend our sponsorship for the 2018 season, continuing as the primary sponsor for the ARCA Racing Series Short Track Challenge," said Joe N. Ismert, president of Sioux Chief Mfg. Co., Inc. "We are looking forward to another exciting season of great racing." The Sioux Chief Short Track Challenge is a series within the ARCA Racing Series, with drivers earning points toward a championship contested on tracks one mile or less in length. The 11 events that will make up the Short Track Challenge kick off with the April 7 Music City 200 from Nashville, and will conclude with ARCA’s 104th race event at Salem Speedway in September. Teams and drivers will race for the Short Track Challenge championship under a special race-only points system, and officials will count a team’s 10 best finishes toward the championship, discarding each team’s worst finish. (In part from (02-27-18)
  • Joe Cooksey to run partial schedule for Hixson Motorsports; starting at Nashville: Longtime ARCA crew chief Crystal Bates had a big night. Bates, normally the crew chief on Wayne Hixson's 2 car, took on the role of tire pressure specialist on the 2 car driven by Andrew Belmont during the race. Bates assisted all week on the 2 and 3 cars, coming away with two top-10 finishes. Bates will return to her crew chief duties at Fairgrounds Speedway Nashville April 7, crew chiefing the 2 car with Joe Cooksey scheduled to drive. "We're going to run both Salems, obviously the dirts, Nashville and maybe IRP (Lucas Oil Raceway)," said Cooksey. (In part from (02-17-18)
  • Kimberly-Clark; SCOTT Brand continues Chicagoland & Rookie of the Year sponsorship: Officials from Kimberly-Clark Professional, Chicagoland Speedway and the Automobile Racing Club of America (ARCA) announced at Daytona Int'l Speedway that SCOTT Brand products will return as an Official Partner of the ARCA Racing Series, and as the title sponsor of the SCOTT 150, the 2018 ARCA event at Chicagoland Speedway on June 28, 2018. Along with hosting the SCOTT 150 race entitlement at Chicagoland Speedway, SCOTT Brand will also continue for the sixth year as the title sponsor of ARCA’s Rookie of the Year program - The SCOTT Rookie Challenge. "Chicagoland Speedway has proven to be a great partner in years past and we are honored to return as the title sponsor of the ARCA Series race this year," said Norma Blanco, Customer Marketing Manager with Kimberly-Clark Professional. "Not only does Chicagoland Speedway provide incredible racing entertainment throughout the weekend for all racing fans, it is home to the largest Menards market in the country. We appreciate the opportunity to thank our Menards customers and plan to showcase all of our products available at Menards." (In part from (02-17-18)
  • Michael Self wins the Lucas Oil 200 at Daytona: Like he was shot out of a cannon, Salt Lake City, Utah's Michael Self, on the last lap, jumped out to a 10-length advantage in overtime to win the wild ARCA Racing Series Lucas Oil 200 Saturday night at Daytona Int'l Speedway. Self, in the No. 15 Venturini Motorsports-prepared Sinclair Lubricants Toyota, also survived two late-race multi-car crashes to get in position for the biggest win of his career. "Survived man... just survived," said Self in victory lane. "I got really lucky. I made it through all the wrecks. This thing is rough... it's beat up. I made some mistakes, but we were able to overcome them. I had a lot of help on the radio... that's why we're here. This is especially great for Sinclair. It's insane how rewarding this feels. That company took a chance on me. They're from my home state, and that's really special." Full Results (In part from (02-10-18)
  • Leilani Münter competing in an expanded schedule for Venturini: Just hours before today’s highly anticipated ARCA season opener at Daytona, driver, Leilani Münter, addressed the media unveiling her extended 2018 series schedule. Following a busy morning of appearances, Leilani proudly introduced her No.20 Daytona car along with a season schedule which will feature the Rochester, Minn. native in eight series events – the most single-season events she’s competed since her series debut in 2010. "I’m thrilled to be returning to Venturini Motorsports for eight races in the No. 20 Toyota," said Leilani. "I’m excited to run three tracks I’ve never raced on before (Charlotte, Michigan, Pocono). It’s also a huge relief to me to be in a race car on a semi-regular basis; I’ve primarily had one-off race deals in ARCA. A huge thank you to A Well-Fed World and for supporting me and to Venturini Motorsports for giving me fast race cars." In addition to Daytona, Leilani will compete at Talladega Superspeedway (4/27), Charlotte Motor Speedway (5/24), Pocono Raceway (6/1), Michigan International Speedway (6/8), Chicagoland Speedway (6/28), Pocono Raceway (7/27) and Kansas Speedway (10/19). (In part from Venturini Motorsports PR) (02-10-18)
  • Natalie Decker wins Lucas Oil 200 pole: Natalie Decker, in her first attempt at Daytona, won the General Tire Pole for Saturday's Lucas Oil 200 at Daytona Int'l Speedway. The Eagle River, Wisconsin rookie qualified with a top speed of 181.859 mph in her No. 25 Venturini Motorsports-prepared N29 Capital Partners – Yamaha Power Products Toyota Camry. Her top speed came from the fourth group among the six groups that qualified. "This means so much to me to be here," said Decker. "And to get the pole at Daytona is definitely the biggest moment of my career. I beat Johnny Sauter once at State Park Speedway, but this even beats that." Starting Lineup (In part from Venturini Motorsports PR) (02-09-18)
  • Menards extends ARCA sponsorship: Officials from Menard Inc. have announced that the Wisconsin-based home improvement retailer will once again serve as the presenting sponsor of the ARCA Racing Series for 2018. "We are very excited to return for a ninth season as the series sponsor," said Jeff Abbott, Menards Promotions Manager & Spokesperson. "This is such a great, grassroots series and the new bodies and ARCA Ilmor engine packages have made it even better. But, more than anything, what keeps us coming back is how we feel so connected with those who follow this series throughout our markets. We sell tickets to races, run contractor events and continue to promote the Menards brand. 2018 should be exceptional and we’re glad to remain a part of it." The sponsorship renewal announcement extends Menards affiliation as the series presenting sponsor to nine years, and their overall involvement with ARCA dates back to 2009. The marketing program and sponsorship is based off of Business to Business relationships and collaboration with suppliers to Menards, the country's third largest home improvement retail chain. "Menards is a very important business partner to ARCA," said Mark Gundrum, VP Business Development and Corporate Partnerships for the Temperance, Mich.-based stock car sanctioning body. "Their support goes far beyond sponsorship. Mere words cannot explainour appreciation of their collaboration and partnership." (In part from (02-09-18)
  • Grant Quinlan joins Rette Jones Racing for Daytona: Rette Jones Racing development driver Grant Quinlan is looking for a big finish in Saturday's Lucas Oil 200. The rookie driver from Maidstone, Ontario has big shoes to fill considering team owner Terry Jones finished a career-best second last year at Daytona. "I’m feeling the jitterbugs, but a lot of that went away after I climbed in the car for practice Thursday," said Quinlan. "Daytona can be intimidating for anyone, especially a rookie like me, but thankfully I have a good team that is surrounded by veterans who have a lot of experience and should help make my ARCA debut a smooth one." Led by former championship crew chief Mark Rette, RJR participated in the sanctioning body’s open test session at the 2.5-mile superspeedway last month. While the team made steady gains during the two-day session, the 19-year-old says what his team did back at the shop since then should make them even better for Saturday afternoon’s 200-mile shootout. "We were somewhat satisfied with our results at the test," added Quinlan who hopes to run more ARCA races with Rette Jones Racing following Daytona. "Mark and the team kept making adjustments and with every change, we kept getting better." (In part from (02-09-18)
  • Circle Track Warehouse becomes ARCA contingency sponsor: Officials from the Automobile Racing Club of America (ARCA) have announced that Circle Track Warehouse has joined the ARCA Racing Series as a participating parts provider and contingency sponsor of the series. "We appreciate Circle Track Warehouse’s commitment to support the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards and our race teams," said ARCA President Ron Drager. The 10-year old company sells new and used race cars, engines, brakes, seats, race parts and other products to competitors in many different race series from coast-to-coast. "We’re excited about our new partnership with ARCA, and we’re looking forward to servicing both our existing customers, and new customers from this relationship," said Bryan Rogers, owner of Circle Track Warehouse. "We offer customers both new and used solutions for their race cars. We’ll purchase, sell, and trade with our customers to give them the best options for their race parts needs." (In part from (02-09-18)
  • Dave Mader III fastest in Daytona practice: Sixty-two-year-old Dave Mader III didn't let his age slow him down today at Daytona Int'l Speedway. The Maylene, Ala. driver was fastest on the board Thursday in ARCA practice in preparation for Saturday's Lucas Oil 200. Mader, in Jeff Spraker's No. 63 Diamond C Ranch-American Apparel Chevrolet, circled the 2.5-mile superspeedway in 49.784 seconds, an average speed of 180.781 mph. It was Mader's first superspeedway appearance since 1991. "It's beyond awesome," said Mader. "All I can say is Jeff Spraker is the man. I'm in a great piece. All of us are only as good as our car for the most part. Yes, we have to drive it, but Jeff has given me a great piece." Newcomer Kirk Horton was second fastest in the No. 37 Norm Hutton Racing Chevrolet at 180.763 mph. Gus Dean, Will Rodgers and Codie Rohrbaugh completed the top-five. In all, 39 drivers posted time and speed in today's two-hour practice session. Practice Results (In part from (02-08-18)
  • Codie Rohrbaugh back for partial schedule starting at Daytona: After a limited schedule last year, Petersburg, W.V.'s Codie Rohrbaugh is looking for more in 2018, starting with the 55th running of the Lucas Oil 200 at Daytona Int'l Speedway. "We’re going to have a good dose of ARCA races on our schedule this year; but we won’t be competing for the championship... so we can go to the race track every weekend and focus on just winning," said Rohrbaugh. "It’s going to be tough, but I think we’ve shown the speed over the last 10 months or so to prove that with the right circumstances, we can be winners." Rohrbaugh tested at Daytona in mid-January, coming away with the 27th fastest speed out of the 60-plus drivers who participated. "Our No. 7 Grant County Mulch Chevrolet is going to be pretty good this weekend at Daytona,” said Rohrbaugh, who will make his 11th career ARCA start and second at Daytona Saturday. (In part from (02-08-18)
  • Ed Pompa racing at Daytona for Fast Track; brings new sponsors: Two weeks ago, Ed Pompa had no intention to race in the Lucas Oil 200 at Daytona Int'l Speedway. How fast it can all change. "Andy (Hillenburg/car owner) had someone scheduled for the 22," said Pompa. "As it turned out, the guy that was supposed to run the 22 went somewhere else. So Andy called me and asked if I wanted to run the 22, and here I am." And so is the good ole trusty number 22 car out of Andy Hillenburg's Fast Track Racing stable. The team calls the car the "work horse." In fact, anywhere Hillenburg raced a composite car last year on the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards tour, it was this car, the same car that Pompa will drive here at Daytona. The car ran last year at Pocono, Salem and several more tracks…even on the Springfield and DuQuoin mile dirts. Gary Ifft, son of longtime NASCAR/ARCA crew chief David Ifft, will crew chief the car for Pompa. The 22 number is from the Chad Bryant Racing team; but the car is out of Hillenburg's shop. Hillenburg's Fast Track Racing team tested two cars at Daytona in mid-January. "I was down for the test," Pompa continued. "But that was just to shake down the cars, make sure they were good before the Road to Daytona drivers got in. I wasn't planning on doing the race until Andy called." Pompa not only got the call to run ARCA's biggest race of the year, the Ballston Spa, N.Y. driver brought some new sponsors along for the ride. Turn One Condos, at Charlotte Motor Speedway, and Classic Hassocks, of Slatersville, Rhode Island will help sponsor the 22 car for Saturday's race. (In part from (02-08-18)
  • Tom Hessert returns to Venturini for Daytona; secures sponsorship: Veteran Tom Hessert returns to the high banks at Daytona for the ARCA Racing Series season opening Lucas Oil 200 on Saturday, February 10. Making his 185th career ARCA start, Tom Hessert will buckle into Venturini Motorsports' No. 55 US Turf Equipment Toyota Camry hoping to capture his first win at the World Center of Racing. Hessert, who's driven for Venturini Motorsports since 2015, won the pole for the Daytona season opener last season and finished fifth in the event. "Venturini Motorsports always brings a good package to Daytona. Our Toyota Camry was really strong at last month's test. The car was hooked up and handled the same during the run, whether we were towards the front, in the middle, or out back. I'm really looking forward to this one." (In part from Venturini Motorsports PR) (02-07-18)
  • Ronnie Osmer driving second car for Max Force Racing at Daytona: Scott Rookie Challenge candidate Ronnie Osmer has teamed up with HUB International for Osmer’s first start at Daytona International Speedway. "The last month has been kind of a blur with the opportunity to test at Daytona and now a shot at racing," said Osmer. "Having a company with as much clout as HUB International partner with us is incredible." With over 10,000 agents HUB is one of the largest insurance brokers in the world, and represents a broad, deep, one-of-a-kind aggregation of insurance entrepreneurs. HUB offers a wide variety of personal and business insurance with over 400 brokerages in the US. Osmer will pilot a Ford Fusion made possible by Louisiana Ford Dealer, Supreme Ford in the Lucas Oil 200 driven by General Tire on February 10that Datyona. "Ronnie had a great test and a lot of people have worked really hard to get him back for the race," team owner Thomas Praytor. "He should have a solid race, plus I really enjoy having another MIS-5 Flags Driver as my teammate." (In part from Max Force Racing PR) (02-07-08)
  • Jesse Iwuji secures sponsorship from BBMC Mortgage for ARCA debut: In a sport that has the reputation for supporting our nation’s military, the excitement is palpable as the first ever Naval Academy graduate, Lt. Jesse Iwuji, prepares to debut in the ARCA Racing Series at Daytona. "I am so thankful for my time at the Naval Academy" said Lt. Iwuji. "It was one of the best decisions I have ever made. Also, my time spent playing football for Navy and serving our country taught me the priceless lessons of teamwork and trust - all skills that will translate well into my racing journey." Lt. Iwuji, who is understandably invested in promoting brands that support our military, is particularly proud to team with BBMC Mortgage who is helping propel his dream of moving from Navy to NASCAR. BBMC Mortgage is a full-service lending company that specializes in VA loans and supports veterans with a monetary donation on every qualified closed loan. "I am honored to represent a company that is so focused on giving back and serving members of the military." For their part, BBMC Mortgage couldn’t be prouder to be teaming up with Lt. Iwuji. Todd Jones, president of BBMC, said, "Jesse represents all that is best in our great country and he particularly demonstrates the values that BBMC Mortgage holds dearest: commitment to excellence, service to our great nation, professional composure, attention to detail, and commitment to speed. BBMC Mortgage believes this team is going to change the face of racing, grant greater access to the American Dream of Homeownership to millions of racing fans through outstanding execution of our mortgage products, and, in the process, care for our veterans better than any team or company in America." (In part from (02-04-18)
  • Andrew Belmont racing for Fast Track at Daytona: The Belmont family tradition continues with the next generation. And it starts at Daytona Int'l Speedway where Andrew Belmont, son of ARCA Racing Series veteran Andy Belmont, will make his Daytona debut in the 55th annual Lucas Oil 200. Andrew, a 25-year-old iron worker by trade, will be following in his father Andy’s footsteps as he races in the ARCA Racing Series' signature event. "It's exciting," said Andrew Belmont. "It was kind of a spur of the moment decision but I'm glad we're going through with it. There were so many years working on the cars at Daytona. I'm glad to finally get behind the wheel and give it a shot." Belmont will be driving the No. 2 ModSpace Ford, under an alliance with Mullins Racing. In addition to sponsorship from ModSpace, Belmont will have several associates on the car including ISC Racer Tape (located in Fairless Hills, PA), KB Letterin’ (operated by Andy’s brother Kevin), Mechanix Wear, Continental Fire & Safety, G Force, LaJoie of Seating and PWD Lubricants. (In part from (02-04-18)
  • Jerry de Weerdt racing at Daytona for Patriot Motorsports Group: After testing an ARCA car at Daytona, Jerry de Weerdt will attempt first start on a superspeedway. De Weerdt, from Aartselaar, Belgium, finished 14th in the ELITE 1 and 10th in the ELITE 2 divisions last season in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series and will drive the No. [38] Chevrolet for Patriot Motorsports in the ARCA Series season opener. This won’t be the first time racing in the United States for De Weerdt after making his NASCAR K&N Pro Series debut last fall. After the K&N Pro Series race in Bakersfield the team informed me they were going to start in the ARCA series in 2018 and invited me to the test," the Belgian told De Weerdt learned after testing over the weekend that he received permission from ARCA officials to start the Lucas Oil 200 on Saturday, February 10. He also defined some simple goals when he starts his first ever ARCA race. "In the race I hope to stay out of trouble," de Weerdt said. "It's always a gamble. You need some luck because in the end you go flat out all the time way round. So it's up to the car and the cars around you to create speed. Finishing without crashing is the primary goal." De Weerdt said that the K&N Pro Series and the ARCA race are only the beginning of his career in the US. "The cooperation between Braxx Racing and Patriot Motorsports is going well so there will be more races this year," he added. "I cannot say which ones and in what series yet. Braxx Racing and Patriot Motorsports are definitely going to increase the cooperation." (In part from (02-03-18)
  • "Bootie" Barker named crew chief for Riley Herbst: Joe Gibbs Racing announced today that Robert “Bootie” Barker will serve as crew chief for the No. 18 ARCA Racing Series program for the 2018 season. Barker will team up with 2017 ARCA SCOTT Rookie of the Year, Riley Herbst, and look to improve on an impressive 2017 campaign where Herbst finished fifth overall in the series points standings. "This is an incredible opportunity for me and I am incredibly grateful to join the team here at Joe Gibbs Racing," said Barker. "I am just getting to know Riley and from what I can tell, he is a great kid with an unlimited amount of potential. We obviously want to win the championship this year, but we have a goal of improving each and every day." Barker started his engineering career in 1997 in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. "Bootie" became a crew chief in 2002 and has remained atop the pit box ever since. Throughout the past 16 years, "Bootie" has been a crew chief in both the NASCAR XFINITY Series and the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. (In part from (02-02-18)
  • Daniel Sasnett to drive for Win-Tron Racing at Daytona: Win-Tron Racing announced that Floridian Daniel Sasnett will make his ARCA Racing Series debut in next weekend’s Lucas Oil 200 Driven by General Tire at Daytona Int'l Speedway. Sasnett, a native of Auburndale, Fla., will drive the team’s No. 33 Chevrolet as a teammate to Gus Dean, who will drive the team’s flagship No. 32 GREE Cooling Products Chevrolet. Veteran crew chief Todd Myers will serve as Sasnett’s crew chief. "I’m looking forward to Daytona next weekend," said Sasnett. "The door was open to jump in one of the Win-Tron Racing cars and I took advantage of it. The team had a lot of speed during the ARCA test at Daytona in January and I’m hoping that continues for my ARCA debut." A former Richard Petty Driving Experience instructor, the 39-year-old participated in the two-day test at the "World Center of Racing" in mid-January with Fast Track High-Performance Driving School where he ended the weekend 12th quickest overall out of the 60-plus drivers that participated. Florida-based Standard Sand & Silica will back Sasnett’s efforts. (In part from (02-02-18)