Concord, North Carolina (September 7, 2016) – It’s safe to say Salem Speedway is amongst Tom Hessert’s favorite tracks on the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards tour. In 16-career ARCA Series starts at the famed Indiana high-banked, half-mile track, veteran Tom Hessert has won at Salem three-times.
Hessert, the most recent tour winner, will have his chance to add another Salem trophy on Saturday night when the series returns for the track’s historic 100th All-Time ARCA event and the running of the Eddie Gilstrap Motors Fall Classic 200. Hessert finished sixth in the Salem spring race back in April.
To commemorate ARCA’s 100th event at Salem Speedway, Hessert will drive a special throwback paint scheme highlighting the No.25 car driven by Bill Venturini Sr. during his 1987 Championship season.
“Salem is always a huge race for me and the fans,” says Hessert. “This one though, is going to be extra special. Think about all the history at this track and all the guys who’ve walked thru these gates – it’s really impressive – I’m just really excited to be a part of it all.”
“There’s no other track that quite compares to Salem. It’s really a drivers’ track. It’s got a lot of character and if you’re not focused and up on the wheel for all 200-laps it can bite you. Looking at the entry list it looks like we’ll have one heck of a strong field. Really good to see Frank (Kimmel) back in the car – he’ll be tough but I’m ready for the challenge.”
Of Hessert’s six ARCA Series career wins, three have come at Salem Speedway over the last 4-seasons. He won the 2012 Salem Fall Race, the 2013 Salem Spring Race and the 2014 Salem Fall Race. Hessert’s other three ARCA wins were at Talladega, Iowa and most recently last weekend at the DuQuoin State Fairgrounds.
The upcoming Salem event marks the 100th ARCA Racing Series race at Salem since the tour debuted on the legendary high-banked half-mile track in 1955. No track has appeared more on ARCA’s schedule over the tour’s 64-year history than Salem.
Hessert will join teammates Dalton Sargeant, Christopher Bell and newcomer Zane Smith for the historic 100th ARCA race at Salem.
Venturini Motorsports with 42 all-time ARCA Series victories has five team wins at Salem Speedway (Billy Venturini ’06, Steve Arpin ’10, Brennan Poole ’11, Kyle Benjamin ’13 and Christopher Bell ’16). Venturini Motorsports is alone in second on the all-time ARCA Series team victory list. Larry Clement, who was teamed with Frank Kimmel for many years, leads the way with 71 team victories.
Golf Scramble, Hauler Parade, Friday Night Fan Fest
The Eddie Gilstrap Motors Fall Classic 200 presented by Meadow View/Salem Crossing tops off two full days of celebration that kicks-off on Friday, Sept. 9 with a Golf Scramble, Hauler Parade and evening Fan Fest at the track.
Raceday also includes the Lucas Oil Great American Stocks alongside the stars and cars of the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards. ARCA Racing Series practice is from 12:30 – 1:15 p.m., followed by final practice from 1:45 – 2:30 p.m. Menards Pole Qualifying presented by Ansell is scheduled for 4 p.m. The 100th Eddie Gilstrap Motors Fall Classic starts at 8:00 p.m. Saturday night, September 10.
ABOUT VENTURINI MOTORSPORTS:
Venturini Motorsports (VMS), fielding cars for over 30-years in the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards, is one of the premier NASCAR driver development programs in the country. Multiple team championships and consistent on-track success, VMS has evolved into one of the most recognizable names in motorsports. Since 2007, VMS has assisted in the career development of notable NASCAR drivers such as Joey Logano, Erik Jones, William Byron, Justin Allgaier, Alex Bowman, Brian Scott, Ryan Blaney, Brennan Poole, Daniel Suarez, Brandon Jones and John Wes Townley. Over the years the Venturini name has become synonymous with modern-day racing in America. In 2012, the Venturini family was inducted into the National Italian American Sports Hall of Fame and now find themselves enshrined with such sports icons as Joe DiMaggio, Mario Andretti, Vince Lombardi, Tommy Lasorda and Rocky Marciano.