NEWTON, Iowa – (July 19, 2015) – It was almost a dream day for Cunningham Motorsports, as all three of the teams finished in the top four Friday at Iowa Speedway. The #ThisIsMySpeedway 150 was a one day event amid temperatures approaching 100 degrees.
From ARCA Series veteran, Tom Hessert to Austin Cindric, making his ARCA debut to Kyle Weatherman, making his 20th start–the teams were pleased with their results. Weatherman finished second, after losing the lead on the final restart with Hessert and Cindric following in third and fourth, respectively.
Kyle Weatherman – Weatherman continued his string of consecutive top-5 finishes with Iowa’s runner-up finish marking his 7th of 2015, all with Cunningham Motorsports. After earning his second pole of his career, Weatherman fell back early in the race before settling in third. The only time the 17 year old driver fell out of the top-5 was after a slow pit stop that caused him to restart in 9th on lap 106. With complete determination, he moved up to 5th in four laps. Weatherman continued to push his car, taking the lead on lap 135 of the 150 lap event.
With the ARCA Series rule that races must finish under green conditions, Weatherman and his team had to endure two restarts at the end of the race. He got a jump on the other cars during the first two restarts, but lost the lead on the final one.
In the media center after taking his second runner up finish this year, a disappointed Weatherman said, “They obviously knew that Cunningham Motorsports was here. It’s unfortunate that one of us didn’t take the trophy home. My team worked really hard to give me this fast race car. I obviously wanted the win, after finishing second here in ARCA’s last visit in 2013.”
The SCOTT rookie of the race continued, “We will take the second place finish and look on towards Lucas Oil Raceway next week, where we tested really well last week.”
Tom Hessert – Hessert rebounded during the race to finish third, after struggling with an extremely tight race car during the test and the lone practice session. Crew chief Chad Bryant and Hessert’s team made multiple changes to the No. 77 Dodge throughout the lone practice session, with few results. After qualifying 8th, Hessert was more pleased with his car.
Hessert ran in the top eight throughout the race before quickly grabbing spots during the final restarts…finishing third. Pleased with his results, Hessert told the reporters in the media center, “There were parts of the race where we were pretty good, but overall just a little too tight to contest for the win.” When asked about whether he liked ARCA’s “green flag” rule he answered, “Yes, today I do. Sometimes it is beneficial to you and sometimes it isn’t. It was good to us today.”
The third place finish helped Hessert gain ground on the championship leader. Hessert is in second place, 95 points behind leader Enfinger
Austin Cindric – Austin Cindric, who was making his ARCA Series debut, led 29 laps in the second half of the race. After starting 4th, Cindric ran in the top-4 all day….finishing in the 4th spot. With the guidance of NASCAR crew chief Chris Carrier, the16 year old, who has a variety of open wheel experience said in the media center, “It was lots of fun. I learned a lot today about the lines and following people through traffic. I am a bit frustrated. I led a lot of laps, but on that restart, I was moved out of the way.”
Cindric commented on the strength of the Cunningham organization saying, “It was a good day for Cunningham Motorsports. If we can find sponsorship, I will be running the Kentucky race with them.” He also explained that his car number, the 99, was in honor of former IndyCar driver Greg Moore, who was killed in a fatal crash just prior to driving for Penske Racing in 2000.
Next Race – The teams return quickly to Mooresville before heading to Lucas Oil Raceway (LOR) for Friday night’s Sioux Chief PowerPEX 200. Once again the Cunningham organization will field three cars, with Chase Briscoe joining Tom Hessert and Kyle Weatherman. Briscoe will make his ARCA Series debut at the .686-mile track in Brownsburg, Indiana, just west of Indianapolis. He will be the fourth driver to make his Series debut this season with Cunningham Motorsports.
Twenty year old Briscoe, from Mitchell, Indiana, is a third generation racer who has tested with the Cunningham organization twice this year…at Nashville and LOR. With NASCAR K&N Pro Series West and Sprint car experience, Briscoe is ready to take on the ARCA Racing Series.
The one day event at LOR begins Friday with two 45 minutes practice sessions, beginning at 1:35 EST and 3:00. Menards Pole Qualifying will follow at 5:30, with the 200 lap race at 9:00, live on Fox Sports 1.
Follow Cunningham Motorsports on twitter @cunningham_race.