Monday, July 18, 2011

ARCA Press Release 7/18/11

For Immediate Release:
Monday, July 18, 2011 
Dillon Fights Intense Heat for Seventh Career Win;
News & Notes from ARCA Racing Series at Iowa Speedway
(TOLEDO, Ohio) - Saturday's official high temperature in Newton, Iowa registered at 96 degrees Fahrenheit, but humidity, an asphalt track, and handling high-horsepower race cars in heavy fire suits caused ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards drivers to face a heat index far exceeding 100 throughout the Prairie Meadows 200.
In addition, the warmest temperatures of the day registered between 4 and 6 p.m. Central; ARCA officials waved the green flag over the 39-car field at 4:08 and the race ended minutes before 6.
Every driver in the field experienced heat issues to varying degrees, and race winner Ty Dillon (No. 41 Richard Childress Racing Development Chevrolet) talked about the atmosphere in his post-race interview.
"It was really hot," Dillon said. "With about 40 to go was when I felt it there and my water got hot so I was starting to get a little warm. It was alright, though. My interior guy, Joe (Mchone), does an awesome job. I can't thank him enough, or else I'd probably be passed out right now. We have a lot of ducts and hoses.
"When you celebrate a win like that, your energy really gets going and then you're really tired, so I'm a little wiped right now."
Chris Buescher (No. 17 Reliance Tool/David Ragan Ford Ford) finished third, and echoed Dillon's statements. He said he found his water bottle empty before the first quarter of the race was complete.
Despite the heat, Dillon set an ARCA record for laps led in a single race and career laps led at Iowa Speedway. His 193 laps in front pushed him past Steve Wallace (177 in 2006) for both marks. Additionally, Dillon won the $500 Aaron's Lap Leader of the Race Award for leading the most laps, and the $500 Messina Wildlife Management Halfway Leader Award for leading at Lap 100. 
The race winner followed his victory by traveling to Rome, Ga. Sunday for dirt racing. Dillon entered his Team Dillon Racing dirt late model at Rome Speedway in the Schaffer Oil Southern National Series. He started third and finished eighth after suffering a flat tire while leading. Dillon will also race tomorrow (Tuesday) at East Alabama Motor Speedway in Phenix City, Ala.
Win Extends Points Lead to 270: Ty Dillon's fifth win of 2011 helped him extend his lead over second place from 230 points to 270, his largest advantage of the year.
Chris Buescher took second from nine-time ARCA champion Frank Kimmel (No. 44 Ansell/Menards Ford), who sits 280 out of the lead after finishing sixth.
"Obviously, second place (in the points) is nice, but unfortunately we still lost a little bit to Ty," Buescher said. "We're just going to try to get some funding up to go up to (Lucas Oil Raceway) in the next two weeks and then we can go from there."
Despite the drop, Kimmel remained the only driver in the field with top-10 finishes in each of the 11 races contested so far.
Grant Enfinger (No. 36 Hoosier Tire Midwest/ Dodge, -305) finished fourth and remained fourth in the standings, and Tim George Jr. (No. 31 Applebee's/Potomac Family Dining Group Chevrolet, -475) ended the race fifth - his sixth top-five in eight races - to move into the top five in the standings.
Chad McCumbee (No. 1 ModSpace Ford, -490) finished a season-low 28th after a tire problem to drop to sixth. Tom Hessert (No. 52 Federated Auto Parts Chevrolet, -590) jumped to seventh with an eighth-place finish.
Like McCumbee, Matt Merrell (No. 32 Champion Hi-Tech Lubricants Dodge, -600) experienced an uncharacteristically tough afternoon and finished 29th to drop from a tie for sixth to eighth. Chad Hackenbracht (No. 58 Fast Fixin'/On the Go PBJamwich, -625) finished 10th to keep ninth in the standings, and Sean Corr (No. 82 Roush Yates Performance Parts/Live United Ford, -735) earned a career-high ninth-place finish to keep 10th in the standings.
The official ARCA Racing Series point standings will be released Tuesday.
Enfinger Charges to Award: Grant Enfinger improved 16 positions from the start, moving from 20th to fourth, to win the CGS Imaging Hard Charger of the Race Award for the second time this season (Daytona). Enfinger's gain helped him move within two points of Chad Hackenbracht for the season-long special award lead with eight races remaining.
Enfinger has finished outside the top 10 just once in his last nine races, and only twice this season.
Marks Improves One Spot Again: Jared Marks (No. 8 Mad Croc Energy Drink Dodge) earned a career-best result in his third start after improving one position from his last start at Winchester Speedway on June 25. Marks finished 11th, and was the final driver on the lead lap.
His 12th-place finish at Winchester was also an improvement of one position on his debut, a 13th-place run at Toledo on May 15.
Gale, Rogers Earn Top-10s in Second Starts: Cale Gale (No. 33 Rheem Chevrolet) and Clay Rogers (No. 42 Beard Oil/ConocoPhillips Lubricants Chevrolet) each made their second starts of 2011, and both finished in the top 10.
Gale was the race's runner-up, an improvement on his 19th-place finish after dominating nearly the entire June 17 race at Michigan.
"I wanted to get one from (Ty Dillon), steal one from him one of these races," Gale said. "(Crew chief) Bruce (Cook) and all the guys did a tremendous job. (It was) the same car we raced at Michigan; they fixed it. I want to thank Rheem and Kevin and DeLana Harvick for giving me the opportunity."
Gale, who spotted for David Mayhew in the evening's NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race, will next race in the ARCA Racing Series at Kansas Speedway on Friday, October 7.
Rogers finished seventh before bolting off to the Truck Series garage, where he is a full-time driver. Rogers finished 17th in the evening's truck race. His ARCA finish was the second ARCA top-10 of his career.
Buescher, Roulos Overcome Practice Trouble: Chris Buescher's rise to second place in the series standings, he said, is a result of his Roulo Brothers Racing team's ability to adapt to any track and any race conditions.
"Pretty much anywhere we go, we can run really decent," Buescher said. "We've had a couple times where we've gotten wrecked, and that's what put us back here. I'm looking forward to dirt. That's something I've done very little of. We'd really like to go to those. I think we're able to adapt really well, and I think we can keep doing that throughout the year."
Buescher started the race 11th and finished the first and second practices only 14th and 15th, respectively, causing slight concern going into the race.
"It was a real good race for us and the Roulo Brothers did a great job," Buescher said. "We were really concerned after practice, but we always seem to pull something out."
Milestone for Hessert: Tom Hessert's start in the Prairie Meadows 200 at Iowa Speedway was his 75th in the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards.
Drivers Earn Career-Highs in Top 20: Buster Graham (No. 58 Batter's Dream Dodge) finished 15th, topping his only other ARCA result (Pocono in June) by five positions. Justin Jennings (No. 28 LG SEEDS Chevrolet) finished 19th in his ARCA debut, and Michael Leavine (No. 03 WRL Contractors/Royal Purple/Conroe Welding Chevrolet) ended 20th in his first start.
Dillon Firmly in Top 50 on All-Time Wins List: Previously, Ty Dillon had been in a tie for 50th place on the all-time ARCA Racing Series win list. His seventh win Saturday moved him into a five-way tie for 46th, meaning Dillon is truly one of the top 50 ARCA winners in the sanction's 59-season history.
Dillon joins fellow seven-time winners Jim Cushman and Jack Shanklin, and champions Justin Lofton (2009) and Lee Raymond (1985, 1986).
Armstrong Makes Truck Series Debut: Only three weeks after his most recent ARCA Racing Series win at Winchester Speedway, Dakoda Armstrong celebrated his 20th birthday by making his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series debut. Driving the No. 98 Chevrolet for ThorSport Racing, Armstrong finished 21st. Before the Truck Series race, Armstrong interviewed with SPEED and received a rookie's welcome, having a piece of cake smashed in his face while on air.
Two Top-Fivers in Truck Series Racing ARCA at LOR: Matt Crafton won the evening's NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Iowa Speedway, scoring his second career victory in the series. Soon, Crafton will be back in an ARCA car; he'll race in the Ansell Protective Gloves 200 at Lucas Oil Raceway on Thursday, July 28.
Fellow top-five finisher Joey Coulter (fifth) will also drive at Lucas Oil Raceway, entering his familiar No. 16 Coulter Motorsports Chevrolet.
RCR History Helpful to Dillon at Next Stop: Though the ARCA Racing Series has not appeared at Lucas Oil Raceway since 1985, Richard Childress Racing has been there recently in NASCAR Nationwide and Camping World Truck Series action, giving Ty Dillon some comfort in that he'll have notes to fall back on instead of having to learn a completely new race track.
"I'm excited to go (to Lucas Oil Raceway)," Dillon said. "It's somewhat similar to Iowa, but (Iowa) is a little bit bigger. It's a track that RCR as a company has been to before, so it'll be a little bit less of a learning curve for me trying to learn the track. I can't wait for it to come."
The ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards returns to action on Thursday, July 28, at Lucas Oil Raceway (formerly Indianapolis Raceway Park) in Clermont, Ind. The Ansell Protective Gloves 200 will air live on SPEED at 7 p.m., and the race will open the first of three nights of Kroger SpeedFest.
Practice takes place earlier in the day, from 1:30-3, and Menards Pole Qualifying is scheduled for 4:30. The USAC Midget Series and USAC Silver Crown Series will join ARCA at the historic short track. The race will be the 12th of 19 in the 2011 ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards season, and the first at Lucas Oil Raceway since 1985.

The ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards features 19 events at 16 tracks on its 2011 schedule. The series has crowned an ARCA national champion each year since its inaugural season in 1953, and has toured over 200 race tracks in 28 states since its inception. The series tests the abilities of drivers and race teams over the most diverse schedule of stock car racing events in the world, annually visiting tracks ranging from 0.4 mile to 2.66 miles in length, on both paved and dirt surfaces as well as a left- and right-turn road course.
Founded by John Marcum in 1953 in Toledo, Ohio, the Automobile Racing Club of America (ARCA) is recognized among the leading sanctioning bodies in the country. Closing in on completing its sixth decade after hundreds of thousands of miles of racing, ARCA administers over 100 race events each season in two professional touring series and local weekly events.
Griffin Hickman, ARCA
(419) 574-2685 (mobile)

Don Radebaugh, ARCA
(419) 450-0611 (mobile)

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