Venturini Motorsports’ ARCA Weekend Rewind: Tom Hessert Earns Pole Award & Finishes 4th in General Tire 200, Sargeant Impresses in Superspeedway Debut

Venturini Motorsports Talladega 2016

May 1, 2016 (Concord, NC) – For the second consecutive week, Venturini Motorsports (VMS) drivers turned in strong performances in the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards.

Tom Hessert, driver of the No.25 – Cometic Toyota, led the way for VMS’s trio of drivers during Friday’s series event at Talladega Superspeedway by capturing his third career Menards pole award and finishing fourth in the General Tire 200. Hessert’s pole award delivers VMS it’s 44th all-time in series competition.

Dalton Sargeant, making his first career superspeedway race, turned heads with a solid sixth place finish. In two series starts, Sargeant now has back-to-back top-10 finishes to go along with his third place finish in his series debut.

Mark Thompson, in his attempt to become the oldest driver to capture glory at Talladega, qualified and finished 21st driving his Phoenix Air sponsored Toyota.

The series will return to racing action for the annual running of the Menards 200 at Toledo Speedway on Sunday, May 22nd.

Hessert Earns Pole Award; Finishes Fourth in ARCA General Tire 200 at Talladega

Tom Hessert at Talladega 2016Tom Hessert turned in another Talladega gem only to settle for a fourth place finish during Friday’s ARCA Racing Series presented by Menard General Tire 200 at Talladega Superspeedway.

Hessert, driver of the No.25 – Cometic Toyota, led a race high 23-laps, but came up short during one of the most exciting ARCA restrictor plate races in recent memory.

“What an awesome race,” said Hessert the Cherry Hill, NJ driver. “It was so racy out there today, kind of crazy! It was definitely the best speedway race we’ve (ARCA) had.”

“Today was frustrating because I had such a dominant car and led a lot of laps so to come away without the win hurts – but that’s racing. In the big picture we had a great points day for the 25 team. We stayed equal with some and gained on a lot of the guys in the standings.”

Hessert, who started the season at Daytona with a disappointing 28th place finish after cutting a tire late in the race, finished 12th at Nashville, but has rallied as of late, putting together back-to-back quality starts the last two series’ events – scoring a sixth place finish at Salem and a fourth place finish at Talladega.

“I’m happy for Pickle (Ryan London, No.25 crew chief) and all my guys on the crew, they’ve worked so hard this year without getting the results we deserve. We’re definitely starting to build momentum.”

Continuing a trend as a force to be reckoned with at restrictor plate races, Hessert, who won Talladega in 2014, ran out of fuel leading the race last year on the final lap, only makes the case stronger as a pre-race favorite when the series returns in 2017.

Dalton Sargeant Making the Grade with Strong Talladega Performance; Sixth Place Finish in Superspeedway Debut

After scoring a podium finish in his ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards debut one week ago, Dalton Sargeant turned in another impressive performance, placing sixth in Friday’s General Tire 200 at Talladega Superspeedway.

“Great learning experience for me today with a solid top-10 finish. I’m just thankful to have this opportunity and to have such great equipment underneath me,” said Sargeant after climbing out of his TRD-Windows 10 Toyota.

Sargeant, who qualified 19th, maintained his position during the early stages of the race but kept his composure and worked with his spotter and crew chief, Billy Venturini, to draft his way towards the front.

“I struggled a bit throughout the day – starting with qualifying towards the rear of the field, but I slowing worked my way up, caught a couple of good breaks, and had a chance to race up front near the end of the race. Nothing at all to be ashamed about.”

During the final stages of the race Sargeant competed for the top spot as the lead pack of cars raced down the Alabama Gang Superstretch on the back end of the 2.66 mile superspeedway. Without the help needed to clear the lead car he slipped back ultimately finishing in the sixth position.

“I’ll be a lot more prepared the next time I come to Talladega. I learned a lot, and working with Billy (Venturini) was a huge help in my first attempt at a plate race. He’s got so much racing knowledge and experience at these types of tracks which is really helpful at this stage in my career.”

Venturini Motorsports Sponsors

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, Justin Allgaier, Brian Scott, Alex Bowman, Ryan Blaney, Brennan Poole, John Wes Townley, and Brandon Jones. 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.