STATESVILLE, N.C. (May 17, 2017) – Don’t call it a moral victory, Bret Homes and his No. 23 Holmes II Excavation/Southern States Bank Chevy team were disappointed in the outcome of the General Tire 200. They weren’t going to be content with a top-five finish on his home track; they wanted the win.
Some might call it rebellious, but that’s just Bret. Take it or leave it, Holmes is, simply, just not your average driver. He’s won on every level he’s driven, he’s driven to win, and sometimes going for the win doesn’t always end in fame and glory.
Holmes got turned on the backstretch making a run for the lead at Talladega Superspeedway two weeks ago and wound up hitting the outside wall head-on to bring a painful end to what was shaping up to be an epic day at his home track. He finished 22nd, only his second finish outside the top 13 in 11 career ARCA starts, but was running fourth at the time of the mishap.
“It sucks what happened, but we don’t run to finish in the top-5,” Holmes said. “We run to win, and I make no apologies about it.”
Since the Talladega disappointment, Holmes is dead-set on getting back to the basics. He finished his last semester final at Auburn the night before the Talladega race and that has allowed him to become more involved in the shop on a day-to-day basis.
He was at the Statesville, N.C. based shop today prepping the car that will be run at Toledo this weekend as he spoke about his expectations for the summer.
“I’m glad to have finals out of the way,” Holmes said. “The summer break will allow me to be at the shop more frequently and will create the opportunity for me to work with my crew chief, Bryan Berry, more. I think the team is really turning a corner, and we will get that first win sooner than later.”
Holmes has never run at Toledo Speedway before but sees similarities in the layout of the Ohio track and another speedway he has run well at in the past — Five Flags Speedway in Pensacola, Fla.
“From all the information that I have gathered from video and speaking with others, this track sets up like Five Flags, which I have won races and a track championship at in the past,” he said. “I think with the setup we have going on the car this weekend it will allow me to be more comfortable with being at a new track. I just have to get out there and lay some laps down; when I do that, I’ll be just fine.”
Holmes feels like this weekend could be the turning point to an up and down season so far. With four starts in the ARCA Racing Series Presented by Menards in 2017, Holmes has two top-10 finishes and one DNF at Talladega; his other finish at Nashville was an abysmal 13th-place run marred by an unforeseen mechanical issue that hindered his performance.
It has not been what the Munford, Ala., native expected, but his growth and understanding from the misfortunes of the previous events have led him to believe that things are finally looking up.
“If we just work on every little thing we can, the wins will come,” he said. “It is just a matter of getting a little luck to go our way and finding out that formula then applying it to every track we go to throughout the remainder of the season. If we do that, it’ll come together.
“I’m not too worried about it. We have a lot of grit and determination in us. Maybe it’s just our nature, but we don’t quit, and we won’t quit until we get that first win. There is just no other option.”
Holmes will make his first start at Toledo Speedway Sunday in the Menards 200 presented by Federated Car Care with the expectations, as usual, that a win will follow.
The Menards 200 presented by Federated Car Care starts at 2 p.m. Sunday, May 21. In addition to Live Timing & Scoring and Live Chat on arcaracing.com, the race will air later that day on FS1 at 5 p.m. (EST).
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.