Aric Almirola Heads Back to Kansas with Renewed Confidence
After two finishes just outside of the Top 15 in both Loudon and Dover, Aric Almirola brought the No. 43 Smithfield Ford home in 15th place at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Just like Charlotte, Kansas Speedway is an intermediate mile-and-a-half track. With a Top-20 finish at Kansas earlier this season, Almirola is hoping that momentum and notes from Charlotte will benefit the team heading into the weekend. The team's recent changes to improve on-track performance are starting to settle in and the progress is beginning to show. Even though the No. 43 Smithfield Ford is not in The Chase, the last 10 races are a great opportunity for Almirola and the team to score strong finishes and work toward race wins.
Almirola has nine Sprint Cup Series starts at Kansas Speedway. He has tied his best finish of eighth in the spring races of 2013 and 2014. Almirola led 69 laps in 2012 to almost win but was taken out of the race with a blown tire.
Almirola will be at the Ford Performance display on Sunday morning answering fans' questions. Be sure you're there with your questions ready!
When: Sunday, October 16, 10:45 - 11:00 AM
Where: Ford Performance Display, Kansas Speedway Fan Midway
"I think that Kansas is starting to get back to what it used to be before the repave. Now when we show up, cars are moving all over the track. When they first repaved Kansas, the grove was right there on the bottom, on the white line. It was one groove but still very fast. Now with the weathering of the track and the tires that Goodyear has been bringing, we've been moving around a lot. We've been able to run the middle of the racetrack. And, sometimes towards the end of the race, it gets all the way up to the wall. It's really fun to run that track now that it seems to be transitioning back to the old style of Kansas. Mile-and-a-half tracks have been a struggle for us this year, but we did really well in Charlotte last weekend. I think we've made good progress with our intermediate-track program, so I'm looking forward to taking our No. 43 Smithfield Ford out there to see what we can do."
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