With another Top-15 finish under his belt from this past weekend in Martinsville, Aric Almirola is ready to take the No. 43 Smithfield Ford back to Texas Motor Speedway. The team struggled to get a handle on the car during the spring race earlier this year, and Almirola went home with a 24th-place finish. The intermediate-track package has been a challenge for the team this year, but they put in hard work at the race shop to make improvements and be ready for the final mile-and-a-half track races. With a fresh perspective for the team heading into The Chase outside of the championship hunt, Almirola has scored five Top-20 finishes, three of which were in the Top 15. Almirola is ready to head back to Texas to rebound from earlier this year and continue his recent success.
This will be Almirola's 12th start at Texas Motor Speedway. He scored one Top 10 finish at the intermediate track, a seventh place that came in 2013. In the same race, he earned his best starting position of third place.
Fans will have the opportunity to see Almirola and "The King" Richard Petty when they judge the final qualifying round of the Whole Hog Challenge at the Smithfield Display in Texas Motor Speedway's Fan Midway. Pre-selected contestants will compete against one another to eat eight Smithfield ribs the fastest. The winner, crowned by Almirola and Petty, will move on to participate in the Whole Hog Challenge Championship in Miami at the end of the season.
When: Sunday, November 6, 10:15 - 10:45 AM
Where: Smithfield Display, Texas Motor Speedway
"Texas has proven to be somewhat of an arch nemesis for us in the last two years. We haven't run well there. We've struggled with our racecars being really loose on the long runs. And, those bumps in Turn 1 there are very violent, very big. They used to just be swells, but now, they're actual bumps. They make it challenging to make your car setup to go over those bumps yet still be low to the ground and have grip. So we have a big circle around this race. We will have a real big focus on trying to make sure that we can maintain some grip and not get really, really loose like we have the last couple years. We've got some great momentum heading there after great finishes for the No. 43 Smithfield Ford in Talladega and Martinsville, so hopefully we can keep the positive upward trend going and get a solid finish this weekend."