STATESVILLE, N.C. (June 5, 2017) – Bret Holmes and the No. 23 Chevy team finally gained positive momentum on the 2017 ARCA Racing Series Presented by Menards season after Holmes drove through the field to finish fourth in the Shore Lunch 250 at Elko Speedway on Saturday night.
After qualifying second, Holmes battled a loose racecar for most of the event that led him to fall outside of the top-10 before he and the team could make adjustments on lap 72.
Then, after getting the car more manageable, Holmes started his march towards the front, picking off multiple competitors until he was within reach of the top-5 with only a few laps remaining.
Finally, on the last lap, as Holmes watched the top handful of cars battle for the lead, a major wreck broke out in the final turn that sent smoke and machine into a frenzy near the start/finish line. The Munford, Ala., driver instinctively maneuvered his car through the haze to grab his first top-5 of 2017.
“That was a wild finish,” Holmes said. “I had a feeling that something was going to go wrong between those guys, but I didn’t know when or exactly where. When the wreck finally did happen, I just pinned the car low and held on. They were on a different tire strategy than us, so they were a little quicker at the end, but I’m glad we were able to finish and get a good result.”
With that momentum, Holmes and the team now turn their attention to Pocono and the General Tire #AnywhereIsPossible 200 that will take place this Friday, June 9th at 5:45 p.m. (EST).
Bret Holmes Racing is the defending winner of the event, as Grant Enfinger took the No. 23 Chevy to Victory Lane in 2016. Enfinger is currently competing in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, and Holmes would like nothing better than to follow his former crew chief back there.
“That was our first taste of winning in ARCA, and we want to feel that way again this Friday,” Holmes said. “I know I lack a little bit in experience at mile-and-a-half tracks, but the test Wednesday will be important for me to get my bearings right for the track.
“We won last year with a short-track car and played the gas mileage game. This year we are bringing a faster car, and hopefully will be able to get the best of both worlds. I am excited to see how this week goes.
“We got our bad luck out of the way I think, and now we can really start to build on our success.”
The open ARCA test will be conducted from Pocono Raceway on June 7. Cars will be on track from 9-5, and the media is encouraged to attend. In the event of rain, testing will be conducted the following day.
Practice for the General Tire #AnywhereIsPossible 200 will be held on raceday, Friday morning from 9:30-10:55 a.m. with General Tire Pole Qualifying at 2 p.m. The General Tire #AnywhereIsPossible 200 is live on FS1 Friday at 5:45 p.m. In addition to live coverage on FS1, arcaracing.com will feature live timing and scoring and live chat of all on-track activities.
Race Recap (Elko):
No. 23 Holmes II Excavation/ Southern States Bank Chevy – Bret Holmes
Track: Elko Speedway
Race: Shore Lunch 250
Date: June 3, 2017
Laps Completed: 250/250
Laps Led: 0
Point Standings: 6th (-315)
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.