ARCA Menards Series Advance: Phoenix Raceway

DGR Crosley

Track: Phoenix Raceway, one-mile tri-oval
Race: 2 of 20
Event: General Tire 150 (150 miles, 150 laps)

Phoenix Raceway

Friday, March 6
12:00 p.m………Final Practice
4:30 p.m……….Qualifying
7:00 p.m……….Race (FS1)
(all times ET)

Hailie Deegan, No. 4 Toter Ford Fusion

Hailie Deegan

Coming off her second-place finish at Daytona International Speedway last month, Hailie Deegan is ready to get back on track at Phoenix Raceway this Friday. In her DGR-Crosley and Ford debut at Daytona, Deegan drove her way to a runner-up finish, her best career result and tying the best result for a female in the ARCA Menards Series.

This will be Deegan’s second race at Phoenix. Last year she competed in the ARCA Menards Series West event and brought home a fourth-place finish after starting back in the field in 17th place. This year she hopes to improve on both her starting and finishing positions.

Deegan will have a new paint scheme featuring Toter on her No. 4 Ford Fusion at Phoenix. Toter is the leading provider of waste and recycling carts to waste haulers and municipalities in North America. Toter is a division of Wastequip, and will be on her Ford at both Phoenix and Charlotte Motor Speedway on May 22.

Deegan on Phoenix: “Phoenix is really fun. I’d say the restarts are the most fun. You can be four wide going into turn two and it gets sketchy sometimes. It’s a place where a driver can make up for what the car is doing and kind of technique it a little bit, which I think with DGR-Crosley having a good run there last year they had a fast car. I know they didn’t get the finish they wanted, but I’m excited to go back there with a good Toter Ford Fusion, a good setup and a good team. Hopefully all that leads to a good finish.”

Tanner Gray, No. 17 Ford Performance Fusion

Tanner Gray

Tanner Gray returns to the ARCA Menards Series at Phoenix Raceway while there is a break in the action in the NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series where he competes full time. Gray is also helping fill the driver’s seat for his younger brother, Taylor, who does not turn 15 until March 25 and will make his ARCA Menards Series West debut at Irwindale Speedway later this month.

The New Mexico native ran eight ARCA races last season with one top-five, five top-10 finishes and one pole. He also ran a combined 15 races between the ARCA Menards Series East and West in 2019 with one win (South Boston, Va.) nine top-five, 12 top-10 finishes and three poles. Gray finished 16th in the ARCA Menards Series season opener at Daytona last month after an oil leak took him out of contention.

Gray has one prior start at Phoenix Raceway. He finished 17th in the Truck Series race there last fall running for DGR-Crosley. He’s looking forward to gaining valuable experience at the one-mile track this Friday, which he can apply to the Truck Series season finale there in November.

Gray on Phoenix: “I’m excited to be back in the ARCA car and working with Blake (Bainbridge) and the 17 team again this weekend. We have a couple of weeks off on the truck side, so it’s always nice to be able to stay in the car and get some experience at tracks that we will be visiting later in the season. I raced at Phoenix last fall in the Truck Series, and we really struggled as a whole. I feel like I have a better handle and more success on the mile-and-a-half tracks right now. It’s definitely a good thing that I can pick up some extra track time and get some more experience on the shorter tracks, especially knowing that Phoenix is the season finale in the Truck Series this year.”

Thad Moffitt, No. 46 Richard Petty Performance Plus Motor Oil Ford Fusion

Thad Moffitt

Thad Moffitt is excited to head to Phoenix Raceway for Friday’s General Tire 150 after earning his best career ARCA Menards Series finish at Daytona International Speedway last month. Moffitt drove his No. 46 Richard Petty Performance Plus Motor Oil Ford Fusion to a fifth-place finish in his first start with DGR-Crosley and only his second start at Daytona.

This race will be a new experience for Moffitt since he has never raced at Phoenix Raceway. To prepare, he has spent many hours watching film of past races, practicing on the simulator and talking to his teammates and co-owner, David Gilliland, about what to expect at the one-mile oval.

Moffitt will also be sporting a new look at Phoenix after getting his long red locks cut off last week for a good cause. Moffitt donated his hair to “Children With Hair Loss” last Tuesday while at Victory Junction. Six-time Victory Junction camper Kaylin Allison had the honor of cutting off 10 inches of his curly red hair for the donation.

Moffitt on Phoenix: “Talking to Tanner (Gray) and David (Gilliland) it seems like a pretty straightforward track. Everyone has commented on how easy it is to overdrive entry. Running it on the simulator it seems very similar to turn three at Pocono. I think I’ll be okay getting used to it, but I know that my DGR-Crosley guys will bring a really fast Ford Fusion. I’m just excited to get there and see how it goes.”