(Marne, Michigan – August 7, 2016) Matt Kurzejewski and his Ansell-Menards team went into Berlin Raceway with the goal of bringing home a solid top-5 performance after several weeks of bad luck, and they did just that. The Ken Schrader Racing team found themselves in the third position when the checkered flag fell on a wild Berlin 200.
Kurzejewski, the 25-year-old from Mansfield, Pennsylvania spent the two short practice sessions on Saturday afternoon trying to get the hang of the tricky small circle racetrack located in the beautiful hills of Michigan.
“This place is tricky,” Kurzejewski stated. “You never stop turning around Berlin, it’s a very tough race track to get used to and get into a rhythm due to that.”
Following his 10th place-qualifying run during Menards Pole Qualifying Presented by Ansell, Kurzejewski said, “Berlin Raceway is so easy to over drive, I felt I overdrove the car during qualifying and that put us 10th on the charts.”
The Berlin 200 took the green flag under the lights and in front of a packed house on Saturday night. Kurzejewski quickly settled into the top-10. The Ansell-Menards team made a pit stop around lap 45 for two fresh General Tires. The team executed a great pit stop and gained three spots for the No.52 machine.
“The first part of the race the car was just really tight, it made it hard to drive but we managed to stay on the lead lap and our pit crew was excellent tonight,” continued Kurzejewski.
As the race unfolded, Kurzejewski found himself sitting solidly inside the top-5 after missing several late race incidents. The most important one coming with just under 15 laps remaining in which Kurzejewski would be scored in the second position with a shot at the lead on the restart. Once the green flag fell with a handful of laps remaining, the driver of the No.52 machine would hang on for a season’s best third-place finish.
“We got lucky tonight,” Kurzejewski said. “The team never gave up…just an amazing bunch of guys here at Ken Schrader Racing. Brought our Ansell-Menards Toyota home unscathed. There are a lot here tonight that can’t say that.”
The next event for the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards is the 54th running of the Central Illinois SuperChevyStores.com 100 at the Illinois State Fairgrounds on Sunday, August 21.