|Four former winners headline list of entries for ARCA race|
|Written by Administrator|
|Wednesday, 23 April 2014 00:00|
With an entry list spiced with wily veterans, young chargers, and four former ARCA-Salem winners, Sunday’s (April 27th) Federated Auto Parts 200 presented by Crunch ‘N Nutter, the third ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards race of the 2014 season, is shaping up as another wide open affair on the famed southern Indiana high banks. A number of car-driver combinations are capable of winning the 200-lap race on the tricky half-mile oval.
Frank Kimmel, Ken Schrader, Tom Hessert and Kyle Benjamin, all former Salem winners in ARCA competition, have to be considered among the pre-race favorites, as does Grant Enfinger and at least a half-dozen other drivers.
Enfinger, who currently leads the ARCA Racing Series standings by 50 points over 10-time series champion and nine-time Salem winner Frank Kimmel, has made a clean sweep of the first two races of the season, winning at Daytona on February 15th and Mobile on March 22nd.
If the Fairhope, Ala., driver can win at Salem on Sunday he’ll go in the books as one of only two drivers in ARCA history that have opened the season with three consecutive victories.
Currently, Ramo Stott is the only driver in 62 consecutive seasons that started the year on the strength of three straight wins, pulling off the feat in 1970 with victories at Daytona, Talladega and the half-mile Tri-County Speedway dirt track outside of Cincinnati.
Among those hoping to deny Enfinger a place in ARCA history is Benjamin, who would like nothing better than to join an elite group of just 10 drivers that have posted back-to-back ARCA wins at Salem.
The 16-year-old Easley, SC, driver, the youngest winner in ARCA history, turned in an impressive performance in winning the ARCA 200 last September at Salem.
Kimmel, from nearby Clarksville, Ind., and Hessert of Cherry Hill, N.J., have both won back-to-back races at Salem. Hessert accomplished the rare double last year by winning the spring race after capturing the 2012 ARCA Fall Classic.
Kimmel, who last won at Salem in September of 2008, put together a sting of five consecutive ARCA wins on the high banks from 2000 to 2002.
The all-time win leader in ARCA history will be making his 40th career start at Salem in ARCA competition on Sunday. In 39 previous races on the high banks he has posted nine victories and an amazing 27 top five finishes.
Schrader, one of the most versatile drivers in NASCAR history, is certainly no stranger to ARCA or Salem. The Fenton, Mo., driver has 17 career wins in ARCA competition to his credit, including a 1999 victory on the Salem high banks.
Other top drivers expected for the Federated Auto Parts ARCA 200 presented by Crunch ‘N Nutter include John Wes Townley of Watkinsville, Ga., Justin Boston of Baltimore, Md., Mason Mitchell of W. Des Moines, Iowa, Spencer Gasllagher of Las Vegas, Nev., and Kyle Weatherman of Wentzville, Mo.
Indiana and Kentucky will be represented by Kimmel, Blake Hillard of Owensboro, Ky., Karl Weber of Ambia, Ind., and Mark Meunier of Louisville.
Sharing the high banks with the ARCA Racing Series will be the Lucas Oil Great American Stocks.
The Crunch ‘N Nutter 50, that serves as a prelude to the ARCA 200 on Sunday, is the first race of the season for the popular Salem division.
The first 2,000 paying spectators, age 18 and over, through the ticket gate on Sunday will receive a free Hoosier Lottery scratch-off ticket compliments of the Hoosier Lottery. Race fans are also invited to visit the Hoosier Lottery booth for a chance at winning additional prizes.
Nashville recording group Lucy Angel kicks-off the pre-race festivities on Sunday with a high energy county music concert beginning at 10:45 a.m. A special stage is being erected behind the main grandstand for this highly anticipated musical show.
Lucy Angel, a mother-daughter trio, is currently preparing for the release of their self-titled CD “Lucy Angel” which will debut later this spring.
The Federated Auto Parts ARCA 200 presented by Crunch ‘N Nutter is spread out over the weekend with ARCA practice and pole qualifying scheduled for Saturday afternoon. Practice and qualifications for the Lucas Oil Great American Stocks will also take place on Saturday. The ARCA 200 is slated to roll off at 2:15 on Sunday afternoon. The Lucas Oil Great American Stocks kicks-off Sunday’s action with the Crunch ‘N Nutter 50 at 1 p.m.
The First Harrison Bank on-track autograph session is scheduled to get underway at 11:30 a.m.
Tickets, both reserved and general admission, are now selling for the Federated Auto Parts ARCA 200 presented by Crunch ‘N Nutter and can be purchased by calling 883-6504 or toll free 1-888-246-7223. Tickets can also be purchased on-line at www.salemspeedway.com. Advance general admission tickets at just $15 each are available at five Indiana and Kentucky Menards locations (Columbus, Bloomington, Evansville, Princeton and Owensboro) through September 26th.