STATESVILLE, N.C. (July 12, 2017) – With a new crew chief leading the way, Bret Holmes and the No. 23 Southern States Bank Chevy team found a solid ninth-place finish in the Fans With Benefits 150 at Iowa Speedway Saturday night.
Although it might not have been the most complete race of the year, BHR (Bret Holmes Racing) is chalking this one up as a learning experience they can build off for the remainder of the 2017 ARCA Racing Series Presented by Menards season.
After qualifying seventh earlier in the day, Holmes battled an extremely tight racecar for the majority of the race that eventually led to his team having to make major adjustments during their first pit stop on lap 61. The changes allowed the Munford, Ala., native to jockey for position as the final laps closed in.
Holmes and the team found several positives to draw from their debut in the Hawkeye State. One was the relationship with new crew chief Sam Schram this week. Another was an excellent points night for Holmes as he managed to finish above two other teams that are currently top-5 in the point standings.
Holmes was also the highest finishing rookie driver competing full-time this season.
“I think tonight was one of those nights where you have to focus on the positives more than the negatives,” Holmes said. “I was really excited about working with Sam (Schram) as our crew chief this week, and I think we really gelled well together. It was also a decent points night for us, and we need all those we can get.”
Holmes had never raced at Iowa Speedway before, but leaving the track, he could only think about getting another shot at it soon, albeit this time with an even better car.
“Iowa is a very impressive track,” Holmes said. “I like how the different grooves could be worked in during the race, and I especially like how rough the surface was. Tire management was key tonight, and I can’t wait to get back in the future.”
The team will now enjoy another break in the 2017 ARCA Racing Series schedule before returning to action in the Sioux Chief PowerPex 200 on July 21st at Lucas Oil Raceway in Indianapolis, Ind.
Homes finished sixth last season at the 0.686-mile short track and will look to break through as he still chases that elusive first career ARCA win.
“I feel like Lucas Oil will be a good track for us to come back to,” Holmes said. “I ran well there last season, and I think we will be bringing a good car again this time. That first win is coming, and we feel like it is getting closer every week. Who knows, maybe it will finally be our time up in Indiana.”
For more on Bret Holmes, please visit his new website at www.bretholmes.com or “like” him on Facebook (@bretholmesracing). Follow him on Twitter (@bretholmes_2).
Race Recap (Iowa):
No. 23 Holmes II Excavation/ Southern States Bank Chevy – Bret Holmes
Track: Iowa Speedway
Race: Fans With Benefits 150
Date: July 8, 2017
Laps Completed: 150/150
Laps Led: 0
Point Standings: 6th (2250)
About Bret Holmes Racing: Bret Holmes Racing is an Alabama-based ARCA racing team that operates out of Munford, AL and Statesville, N.C. while still holding true to its traditional southern roots. Founded by Stacy Holmes of Holmes II Excavation in Munford, we stick to our good nature and solid values to put the best product on and off the track with our driver Bret Holmes.