Team Praytor Starts 20th Season With Testing At Daytona

Thomas Praytor ARCA Daytona Testing 2017

After a mad scramble for a test motor, Thomas “Moose” Praytor and his Mobile based Max Force Race team spent some long days with sleepless nights preparing their DK-LOK Ford for testing in Daytona.

“We got back late Sunday night with the motor and went to work on installing first thing Monday morning. We felt like we had until Thursday night at 9 to finish in order to make testing at 7AM on Friday, we closed the door on the hauler at 7:30,” said Praytor. “We had lots of great help and couldn’t have done it without, Dink (Stevens), Mark (Hutchinson), Brandon (Stokes), my Mom, my Sister everybody pitched in.”

While all Ilmor Motors are all made the same way they are not wired or plumbed the same way and all the hook ups in the car had to be changed out to match the motor. “Tony (Blanchard) was a big help, we took a lot of pics and texted back and forth, he really kept us on the right path.”

A long nights drive across the panhandle of Florida to Daytona Beach and hauler arrived in time for an hours sleep before registration opened.

With the DK-LOK Ford finally in the garage, a team of Ilmor engineers started to go over the motor. “The Ilmor guys did a great job all weekend. They were constantly going over the motor after each run.”

The team battled the usual gremlins on the first few runs, tire rub, leaking oil line and after a couple of single car runs the Moose was turned lose, ready to draft.

“We’ve spent a lot of time and money on this chassis and it really shows it in the draft. Our DK-LOK Ford didn’t miss a beat from Talladega and it was really fun to drive.”

After a couple of draft packs, Praytor parked his Ford for the afternoon and the team prepared for a complete tech on Saturday morning. The DK-LOK Ford timed in at 185.770 MPH good enough to be 23rd out of 62 competitors.

Testing in Daytona allows the teams to have the cars teched by ARCA officials to make sure their car and components are ready to go when they return in February for the Lucas Oil Complete Treatment 200 driven by General Tire.

The team spent Saturday morning taking the car apart for tech, putting it back together followed by Praytor made a leisurely stroll around the 2.5 mile World Center of Speed at 180 MPH to make sure it was all back together properly.

“We actually loaded up early which is truly unusual for our race team. Our UNOH guys had a great weekend, the car performed like we wanted and can’t say enough about the guys from Ilmor they really worked hard to get all we could get out of the motor and it paid off.”

The countdown for the start of the 2017 ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards season in now underway for the Lucas Oil Complete Treatment 200 driven by General Tire on February 18th.