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Sixteen-year-old Hailie Deegan battled to a seventh-place finish in the Carneros 200 NASCAR K&N Pro Series West race at Sonoma Raceway on Saturday in her first race on a road course.

The driver of the Bill McAnally Racing No. 19 Mobil 1/NAPA Power Premium Plus/Whelen Toyota Camry led the way among a trio of BMR drivers competing in the 64-lap event on the 1.99-mile road course.

Deegan – a NASCAR Next driver from Temecula, California – captured the spotlight early in the day by qualifying third in time trials, ahead of four of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series drivers competing in the event. In the race, she went door-to-door in battling her competition around the winding road course.

“My goal was to finish in the top 10,” she said afterward. “I didn’t know I was going to qualify third, but that was good too. I’m happy and the crew is happy. It was a good race.”

Deegan talked about conditions she faced on a day in which the temperature hit 98 degrees.

“It was hot,” she said. “The track was so slick. My car was really greasy tight in the front. It was a little hard to hold on to in the earlier segments. Once we got fresh tires, it started getting better.”

Deegan’s teammate, Cole Rouse, had top-five finish go away due to contact from another car less than four laps from the finish. Rouse had charged from 14th on the grid to run as high as second in the No. 99 NAPA Filters Toyota Camry. He was closing in on fourth place when he got tagged from behind.

The third BMR driver, Derek Kraus, had a solid day in the No. 16 NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota Camry – starting eighth and coming home 10th.

Kraus – a 16-year-old from Stratford, Wisconsin – remains third in the championship standings. He has one win, four top-five, and five top-10 finishes in six starts this season.

Rouse is fourth in the standings. The 20-year-old from Fort Smith, Arkansas has three top-five and five top-10 finishes.

With her finish Saturday, Deegan took over the lead in rookie points and moved up two spots to fifth in the overall standings. She has two top-five and six top-10 finishes in her six starts.

She recently completed her requirements for high school graduation and on Saturday was presented with her diploma on stage during driver introductions.

Saturday morning, NAPA guests had the chance to get an inside look at the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series garage area at Sonoma Raceway, with BMR providing special VIP pit tour. The guests also had access to view the race from the NASCAR suite.

The Carneros 200, won in dominant fashion by Will Rodgers, is slated to be televised on NBCSN on June 28 at 3 p.m. PT.

The next event on the K&N Pro Series West schedule will be the Clint Newell Toyota 150 presented by NAPA AUTO PARTS at Douglas County Speedway in Roseburg, Oregon on Saturday, June 30.

BMR PR

There was never any doubt that Will Rodgers was the driver to beat on road courses in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series. And he delivered. Again.

The 23-year-old NASCAR Next driver capped off a dominate weekend by winning the Carneros 200 at Sonoma Raceway on Saturday.

The win marks the fourth of Rodgers’ straight NASCAR K&N Pro Series win on a road course, and Saturday’s West victory comes a week after he won the East race at New Jersey Motorsports Park.

Not even a Sonoma field that included five Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series drivers could keep Rodgers from Victory Lane.

Rodgers was fastest in practice at Sonoma, won the pole position for the second year in a row, and led a race-high 35 laps.

“I knew we would have a great car prepared by Jefferson-Pitts Racing” said Rodgers. “We had a great piece and made very minor adjustments, my crew chief Jeff (Jefferson) definitely had the right ideas in mind and it helped us obviously stay first in practice, get the pole and then here we are in Victory Lane.”

Rodgers entered the first five-minute break at Lap 21 as the race leader over Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series regulars William Byron, Daniel Suarez and Aric Almirola. Seven cars chose to stay out, including Almirola who took over the race lead. With the fastest cars in the field getting shuffled outside of the top five, the excitement picked up.

Rodgers and Suarez began to put on a show as they battled back inside the top five after the restart. It was Suarez who won the race to the front with a pass for the lead over Almirola on lap 39.

By the second and final break at lap 41 the stage was set: Suarez led with Almirola, Rodgers, Erik Jones and Byron right behind.

On the pursuing restart Almirola got the jump around Suarez and back into the lead. The winning pass, however, came on lap 50 when Rodgers dove to the bottom of Almirola entering the hairpin in Turn 11. Rodgers never looked back as he drove to victory by 4.420 seconds. 

Almirola finished second while Byron settled for third.

Suarez finished fourth, just ahead of Ryan Partridge. Partridge took the championship lead by one point over teammate Derek Kraus, who was eighth.

Jones, Hailie Deegan, Thorn, Cole Keatts and Derek Kraus round out the top 10.

The Carneros 200 will air on NBCSN on Thursday, June 28 at 6 p.m. ET.

The NASCAR K&N Pro Series West is right back at it on Saturday, June 30 with the Clint Newell Toyota 150 presented by NAPA Auto Parts at Douglas County Speedway in Roseburg, Ore.

NASCAR PR

Christian Eckes led the way for Venturini Motorsports' trio of drivers, finishing fourth in Friday night's Papa Nicholas Coffee 150 at Gateway Motorsports Park during his ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards return.

Teammates Toni Breidinger finished 12th and Natalie Decker salvaged a top-15 finish after getting spun out nearing the midway point of ARCA's 10th event of the season.

After starting on the outside pole, Christian Eckes, led 35-laps and battled for the top spot all evening with eventual race winner Sheldon Creed. The two Toyota drivers swapped lead changes six times during the 120-lap event.

Eckes, leading late with his eyes focused on earning his second career victory, was moved up the track and out of the groove by Creed on lap-80. Unable to recover, the 17-year old Eckes regained his composure and settled for his second top-5 of the season.

"It's disappointing," said Eckes during his post race interview with FOX Sports reporter, Dillon Welch. "We had a great JBL Toyota tonight. I'm really not sure what happened down on turns one and two. But it's really unfortunate with the car we had. I'm really proud of this team."

Eckes will get another chance at Gateway glory tonight when he returns to the track behind the wheel of his No.46 Mobil 1 Tundra when he makes his second career NASCAR Camping World Truck Series start with Kyle Busch Motorsports.

California native, Toni Breidinger, driver of VMS' No.20 Renton Coil Spring - Flexzilla Toyota Camry, nearly missed out on her second consecutive top-10, finished 12th in just her second ARCA start.

Team owner, Billy Venturini, commented after Breidinger's solid run under the lights.

"Shout out to Toni (Breidinger) on a solid performance tonight," said Venturini. "She’s got very little big car experience and yet she’s already competitive. Lots to build on. I'm looking forward to watching her at Chicago next week."

Set to celebrate her 21st birthday on Monday, Natalie Decker's solid Gateway performance was spoiled after being tagged and sent hard into the outside wall by a competitor entering turn one on lap-65.

Sustaining heavy right side damage to her No.25 N29 Capital Partners - YAMAHA Power Products Toyota, Decker's pit crew went to work with repairs, allowing the rookie driver to finish. "I'm not happy at all," said Decker about the on-track incident. "I get it. It's racing. But when you get wrecked with a good car like we had tonight it's not a good feeling. We'll be back - on to Chicago."

The next race for the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards is the SCOTT 150 at Chicagoland Speedway on Thursday June 28. Practice will start on Thursday at 3 pm ET/2 pm CT, with General Tire Pole Qualifying scheduled for 6:35 pm ET/5:35 pm CT. The green flag will fly over round 11 of the 2018 season at 9 pm ET/8 pm CT; the race will be televised live on FS1.

VMS PR

Sophomore ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards driver Gus Dean and his Win-Tron Racing team showed once again in Friday night’s PapaNicholas Coffee 150 at Gateway (Ill.) Motorsports Park the No. 32 GREE Racing team is on the verge of a breakthrough victory.
 
Despite starting 10th based on practice speeds, Dean quickly showcased the capabilities in his No. 32 GREE Cooling Products | Baker Distributing Chevrolet SS climbing into the top-five by Lap 1.
 
Maintaining a presence inside the top-six during the early stages of the 120-lap race, a pit stop approaching halfway allowed crew chief Jamie Jones to make a chassis adjustment to their race car which ultimately soared Dean inside the top-five.
 
Following a Lap 55 restart, Dean rose from sixth to fourth and even took over third approaching Lap 75, where the Bluffton, S.C. native hovered until Lap 100 when Harrison Burton and Christian Eckes put on a tremendous battle with the Win-Tron Racing driver for the final spot on the podium inside the final 20 laps of the event.
 
Dean fighting a tight, No. 32 GREE Cooling Products | Baker Distributing Chevrolet was unable to fend off Eckes and eventually lost a position to Riley Herbst in the closing laps, falling to sixth when the checkered flag flew capturing his fifth top-10 finish of the 2018 season.  
 
The effort from the Mooresville, N.C.-based team is also their fourth consecutive top-10 for the Win-Tron Racing team dating back to Pocono (Pa.) Raceway earlier this month. After 10 races, Dean has maneuvered two top-five, five top-10s, seven top-15s and nine top-20 efforts so far this season.  
 
Gus Dean Quote: “Such a strong night for us.
 
“After testing on Thursday, I knew that Jamie (Jones, crew chief) and the Win-Tron Racing team brought me a fast No. 32 GREE Cooling Products | Baker Distributing Chevrolet.
 
“Practice went good, got a little trapped there during final practice which hurt our starting position a little bit. We recovered from that tough and had something to show for ourselves.
 
“We got a little too tight there at the end of the race and I think it cost us a top-five run, but I’m still somewhat satisfied with sixth and I can’t begin to explain how proud I am of this team and what we’ve accomplished.
 
“I have the strongest team on pit road and our win is coming soon.
 
“Looking forward to getting to Chicagoland next week and getting some redemption from last year.” 
 
Next Up: SCOTT 150 at Chicagoland Speedway on Thurs., June 28 live on FOX Sports 1.  
 
Gus Dean PR

 

To say this weekend’s NASCAR K&N Pro Series West race is loaded is an understatement.

Derek Thorn knows the fast way around Sonoma Raceway.

The NASCAR K&N Pro Series West championship points leader also knows what’s at stake on the 2.52-mile road course in Saturday’s Carneros 200. A good finish could propel the Bakersfield, California, driver forward to his second series title. Misfortune could spell doom, despite there still being eight races left on the schedule.

“This race and the dirt race can be pivotal points in your championship run,” said Thorn, referencing the race at The Dirt Track at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Both races are expected to have sizable fields — Sonoma has 31 entries — and a bad finish could be hard to overcome. “You have to go into it and hope lady luck is on your side. You can’t make any mistakes and your car has to be right and you have to take care of your car.”

Thorn is coming off a win at Colorado National Raceway on June 9, which gave him a two-point lead over his Bob Bruncati Racing teammate Ryan Partridge.

Thorn’s had success at Sonoma. He finished second to Cup driver David Gilliland in 2012 and won the race in 2013 en route to the championship. He also finished 28th in a one-off start in 2017 after suffering engine failure. Partridge finished fourth there in 2016.

Bill McAnally Racing’s Derek Kraus, Cole Rouse and Hailie Deegan all enter the event in the top six in championship points. Kraus, 16, finished fifth at the California road course, while the 20-year-old Rouse was 10th there in 2016. The 16-year-old Deegan will be making her first road-course start.

A day at Sonoma can go south in a hurry.

In 2016, Todd Gilliland was caught up in a melee on the race’s initial green flag and finished 24th. His only saving grace was championship challenger Chris Eggleston was also similarly snake-bitten and finished 26th.

In the last 10 years, Thorn and Jason Bowles (2009) have won at Sonoma and took home the West title in the same season. Outside of the 2016 anomaly, the average finish at Sonoma for the eventual series champion is 4.2.

“It’s a grueling race,” said Thorn. “To run well or finish up front, you have to be there at the end and make no mistakes. That’s not easy when you have 11 turns and cars all around you and curbs to hit.”

The other thing Sonoma brings — as will the Vegas dirt race — is a handful of cars that could contend for the win but aren’t involved in the championship race.

Will Rodgers leads that pack. The 23-year-old NASCAR Next driver has won the last three road course events in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East and finished a highly-publicized runner-up to former Cup champion Kevin Harvick last year at Sonoma. Rodgers is coming off an East win last weekend on the road course at New Jersey Motorsports Park.

Joining him in the “ringers” circle are five Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series drivers looking for extra seat time prior to Sunday’s Cup race.

Hendrick Motorsports teammates Alex Bowman and William Byron, along with Erik Jones and Daniel Suarez are entered, as is Cup veteran Aric Almirola. Bowman will be driving in a car prepared by BMR, while Bowman will be with Jefferson Pitts Racing. DGR-Crosley will field cars for Jones and Suarez.

“I think it’s cool having those Cup drivers in there and bringing attention to the race,” said Thorn. “I’m not a very good road racer, so I’m hoping to kind of learn something, to be honest with you.

“I hope I’m around them early in the race and learn something, and then apply it toward the end of the race.”

Cup drivers have participated in the West since the latter returned to the track in 2006 after an eight-year hiatus and Brian Vickers won. Since, David Gilliland (2007 and 2012), Joey Logano (2011), Kyle Larson (2014), Chase Elliott (2016) and Harvick (2017) have been to Victory Lane.

It hasn’t all been a smooth ride for the Cup drivers. Last year, Suarez finished 11th and Ryan Blaney 26th. Austin Dillon (23rd in 2014 and sixth in 2015), Ricky Stenhouse (fourth in 2014) and Trevor Bayne (10th in 2015) have had similar lukewarm finishes.

Saturday’s race will be at 1:30 p.m. PT, and air on NBCSN on Thursday, June 28 at 6 p.m.

By then, we will know how big an impact the course had on the K&N Pro Series West championship picture.

NASCAR PR

In an 11th-hour agreement, ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards newcomer Max Tullman (@MaxTullman) has added Friday night’s PapaNicholas Coffee 150 at Gateway (Ill.) Motorsports Park to his schedule continuing to pilot the No. 78 Zoomi |Myota Chevrolet for Mason Mitchell Motorsports (MMM).
 
Tullman and MMM head to Gateway riding the momentum of a strong top-10 finish in their most recent event together at Michigan International Speedway two weeks ago where the 20-year-old finished seventh after starting 17th in the ZOMONGO 200.
 
Utilizing Gateway as an opportunity to gather more seat time ahead of two upcoming ARCA races at Chicagoland Speedway and Iowa Speedway respectively, there are no expectations for Tullman’s first go with the 1.25-mile racetrack other than to see the checkered flag.
 
“I’m really excited about this opportunity to add another ARCA race to my schedule and compete for Mason Mitchell Motorsports,” said Tullman. “We’ve really had a good year and hopefully pairing up for Gateway will give us another chance to go out there and surprise some people with another top-10 run. I can’t thank Zoomi and Myota enough for this added race.”
 
The avid Sports Car racer invaded the ARCA Racing Series in the season-opening Lucas Oil 200 at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway in Feb., where he excelled in his series’ debut which included qualifying fourth, leading 10 laps before finishing sixth.
 
Since Daytona, Tullman has tallied two additional top-10s and finished no worse than 15th in his five career starts.
 
Simply put, Tullman has well-exceeded everyone’s expectations.
 
The addition of Gateway kicks off a busy stretch for Tullman and the Mooresville, N.C.-based Mason Mitchell Motorsports team. From Gateway the team will travel to Iowa Speedway and test at the 0.875-mile short track on June 24 before trekking back east to Chicagoland Speedway in preparation of the SCOTT 150 at the 1.5-mile speedway on Thursday, June 28.
 
Tullman visited Iowa Speedway over the weekend attending the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race alongside Young’s Motorsports whom Tullman will drive for in select races later this year.
 
The Chester Springs, Pa. native knows that attending Iowa over the weekend can enhance his learning curve.
 
“I’m glad I went to Iowa,” Tullman added. “I need all the input I can get – especially when it’s my first time at a race track. Being there on foot and in person allowed me to talk to other drivers, watch practice and qualifying from different areas of the track and sit on the pit box during the race.
 
“I gained a ton of knowledge and I hope that will not only help at Gateway but at the Iowa test and race here in a few weeks.”
 
Tullman’s weekend at Gateway, however, starts with a four-hour test on June 21.
 
“The test should be very beneficial for me and Doug (Richert, crew chief),” sounded Tullman. “I feel like I need all the laps I can get and it just so happens Gateway has a test on Thursday, so I’m happy that I’ll have some added track time before practice on Friday.” 
 
Veteran Motorsports crew chief Richert, who led Dale Earnhardt Sr. to his first Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS) championship in 1980 will continue to call the shots for Tullman.
 
“I feel like I’ve been working with Doug for years compared to just months,” added Tullman. “He’s super patient with me and is really determined to make me a better race car driver inside and out.
 
“We don’t have a lot of notes from Gateway between the two of us, so we’ll lean on Mason and the team for some guidance. Doug is (really) smart though and I’m sure he’ll find that perfect setup that will not only allow me to be comfortable but fast too. Can’t wait to get to Gateway.”   
 
In addition to the PapaNicholas Coffee 150, the IMSA Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge veteran will compete in a minimum of two other ARCA races at Chicagoland and Iowa Speedway (July) respectively.
 
Announced in April, Tullman will also compete in a minimum of two NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races aboard the No. 20 Chevrolet for Young’s Motorsports.
 
Additional stock car races are set to be added to Tullman’s schedule and will be announced in the immediate future.
 
The PapaNicholas Coffee 150 (120 laps |150 miles) is the 10th of 20 races on the 2018 ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards schedule. Practice begins Fri., June 22 with an hour session planned from 12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. A final 55-minute practice session has been etched in from 1:30 p.m. – 2:25 p.m. General Tire pole qualifying is set for later in the day at 5:30 p.m. The race is set to take the green flag later in the day shortly after 8:00 p.m. The event will be broadcasted live on FOX Sports 2, while ARCARacing.com will stream live timing and scoring throughout the week’s activities. All times are local (CT).
 
For autograph requests and to join Max Tullman on social media, please like him on Facebook or follow him on Twitter @MaxTullman.
 
Follow MMM on Social Media: To keep up-to-date with the latest news, information and race updates, follow MMM twitter page @MMM_Race and “Like” their Facebook page at Mason Mitchell Motorsports.
 
MMM PR

In an 11th hour agreement, ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards newcomer Max Tullman (@MaxTullman) has added Friday night’s PapaNicholas Coffee 150 at Gateway (Ill.) Motorsports Park to his schedule continuing to pilot the No. 78 Zoomi |Myota Chevrolet for Mason Mitchell Motorsports (MMM).

Tullman and MMM head to Gateway riding the momentum of a strong top-10 finish in their most recent event together at Michigan International Speedway two weeks ago where the 20-year-old finished seventh after starting 17th in the ZOMONGO 200.

Utilizing Gateway as an opportunity to gather more seat time ahead of two upcoming ARCA races at Chicagoland Speedway and Iowa Speedway respectively, there are no expectations for Tullman’s first go with the 1.25-mile racetrack other than to see the checkered flag.

“I’m really excited about this opportunity to add another ARCA race to my schedule and compete for Mason Mitchell Motorsports,” said Tullman. “We’ve really had a good year and hopefully pairing up for Gateway will give us another chance to go out there and surprise some people with another top-10 run. I can’t thank Zoomi and Myota enough for this added race.”

The avid Sports Car racer invaded the ARCA Racing Series in the season-opening Lucas Oil 200 at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway in Feb., where he excelled in his series’ debut which included qualifying fourth, leading 10 laps before finishing sixth.

Since Daytona, Tullman has tallied two additional top-10s and finished no worse than 15th in his five career starts.

Simply put, Tullman has well-exceeded everyone’s expectations.

The addition of Gateway kicks off a busy stretch for Tullman and the Mooresville, N.C.-based Mason Mitchell Motorsports team. From Gateway the team will travel to Iowa Speedway and test at the 0.875-mile short track on June 24 before trekking back east to Chicagoland Speedway in preparation of the SCOTT 150 at the 1.5-mile speedway on Thursday, June 28.

Tullman visited Iowa Speedway over the weekend attending the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race alongside Young’s Motorsports whom Tullman will drive for in select races later this year.

The Chester Springs, Pa. native knows that attending Iowa over the weekend can enhance his learning curve.

“I’m glad I went to Iowa,” Tullman added. “I need all the input I can get – especially when it’s my first time at a race track. Being there on foot and in person allowed me to talk to other drivers, watch practice and qualifying from different areas of the track and sit on the pit box during the race.

“I gained a ton of knowledge and I hope that will not only help at Gateway but at the Iowa test and race here in a few weeks.”

Tullman’s weekend at Gateway, however, starts with a four-hour test on June 21.

“The test should be very beneficial for me and Doug (Richert, crew chief),” sounded Tullman. “I feel like I need all the laps I can get and it just so happens Gateway has a test on Thursday, so I’m happy that I’ll have some added track time before practice on Friday.”

Veteran Motorsports crew chief Richert, who led Dale Earnhardt Sr. to his first Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS) championship in 1980 will continue to call the shots for Tullman.

“I feel like I’ve been working with Doug for years compared to just months,” added Tullman. “He’s super patient with me and is really determined to make me a better race car driver inside and out.

“We don’t have a lot of notes from Gateway between the two of us, so we’ll lean on Mason and the team for some guidance. Doug is (really) smart though and I’m sure he’ll find that perfect setup that will not only allow me to be comfortable but fast too. Can’t wait to get to Gateway.”   

In addition to the PapaNicholas Coffee 150, the IMSA Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge veteran will compete in a minimum of two other ARCA races at Chicagoland and Iowa Speedway (July) respectively.

 Announced in April, Tullman will also compete in a minimum of two NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races aboard the No. 20 Chevrolet for Young’s Motorsports.

Additional stock car races are set to be added to Tullman’s schedule and will be announced in the immediate future.

The PapaNicholas Coffee 150 (120 laps |150 miles) is the 10th of 20 races on the 2018 ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards schedule. Practice begins Fri., June 22 with an hour session planned from 12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. A final 55-minute practice session has been etched in from 1:30 p.m. – 2:25 p.m. General Tire pole qualifying is set for later in the day at 5:30 p.m. The race is set to take the green flag later in the day shortly after 8:00 p.m. The event will be broadcasted live on FOX Sports 2, while ARCARacing.com will stream live timing and scoring throughout the week’s activities. All times are local (CT).

For autograph requests and to join Max Tullman on social media, please like him on Facebook or follow him on Twitter @MaxTullman.

Follow MMM on Social Media: To keep up-to-date with the latest news, information and race updates, follow MMM twitter page @MMM_Race and “Like” their Facebook page at Mason Mitchell Motorsports.

MMM PR

Racing’s “Alabama Gang” will be thrilling fans once again this weekend as the Gadsden, Alabama-based Wiggins U-27 H1 Unlimited Hydroplane Team announced today they will honor legendary Hueytown, Alabama driver Davey Allison in this weekend’s Guntersville Lake HydroFest 2018. Allison, a winner of 19 races and 14 pole positions in only six full seasons on NASCAR’s top tour, was recently named as a member of the 2019 class of the NASCAR Hall of Fame. The Wiggins crew will pay tribute to Allison, one of the most popular drivers in stock car racing history, by running a special tribute decal on the U-27.

“Growing up here in Alabama, my dad and I were huge fans of the ‘Alabama Gang,’” said Charley Wiggins, co-owner (with father Milton) of the U-27 Team. “I was a regular going to all the Talladega races since I was nine years old and I became one of the biggest Davey Allison fans around.

“To tell you the truth, when we lost Davey, my interest in NASCAR faded for a while,” Wiggins said of Allison’s passing on July 13, 1993, as the result from injuries sustained in a helicopter crash. “Davey was my driver and there was such a huge void without him racing. I really think there are many fans out there, especially here in Alabama, who feel the exact same way.

“For our team and especially me personally, it’s such an honor to be able to run his picture on our boat and pay tribute to him like this,” said Wiggins, the sole H1 Unlimited team owner from the Southeast. “I know all his many fans will appreciate it and enjoy celebrating Davey being voted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame this way.”

“When we were working on the announcement last week that the team would be honoring Alan Kulwicki by putting his tribute decal on the U-27, Charley was quick to say that Davey was always his favorite driver,” said Tom Roberts, the Guntersville resident who heads the Kulwicki Driver Development Program. “I could sense just how much Charley wanted to honor Davey in a similar manner.

“The Allison Family will always be like an extended family of my own,” said Roberts, who served as Bobby Allison’s public relations representative for Miller Brewing from 1984 through 1988. “With both Alan and Davey being voted into the 2019 Hall of Fame Class, I thought it would be appropriate if Charley’s team could honor them by running the decals for both of these special drivers.”

“I reached out to the Allisons and they were so supportive of the idea,” Roberts said. “Bobby and Bonnie signed off on it almost immediately. It took a day or so to finally connect with Liz (Davey’s widow), but she was absolutely ecstatic that Charley wanted to pay tribute to Davey like this.

“Although they can’t be here to see the boat live and up close, we’ll definitely be passing along images of the U-27 to them,” said Roberts. “We also hope to capture some of the fan excitement to show them. I think it will be quite amazing to see the crowd support of the U-27 this weekend. Not only is Charley’s team the only one from this region, now they will have a member of racing’s legendary ‘Alabama Gang’ visible on their boat, too.”

“With Alan riding on the cockpit and Davey on the engine cover, it’ll be like old times at Talladega with those two drafting each other,” Wiggins offered with a chuckle. “Davey and Alan were both Ford drivers for their entire NASCAR racing careers, so that should certainly add to the meaningfulness of having both NASCAR Hall-of-Famers on our U-27.”

This weekend’s Guntersville Lake HydroFest 2018 (June 22-24) will feature both the H1 Unlimited and Grand Prix World (GPW) hydro classes. Wiggins Racing will be fielding entries in both classes, with veteran Cal Phipps driving both boats.

TRPR PR

Riding the wave of two consecutive top-five finishes in ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards competition, Gus Dean (@GusDean) and his Win-Tron Racing team head to Gateway (Ill.) Motorsports Park hoping their third straight top-five performance equals a win in Friday night’s PapaNicholas Coffee 150.
 
Last weekend at Madison (Wisc.) International Speedway, Dean roared from a ninth-place qualifying effort to maneuver his No. 32 GREE Cooling Products | Baker Distributing Chevrolet inside the top-five and climbed to a race-high second before settling for fifth when the checkered flag flew.
 
Dean, the Bluffton, S.C.-native finally believes his Mooresville, N.C.-based team has shaken their stretch of bad luck and can now concentrate on winning races.
 
“I’m so proud of this Win-Tron Racing team over the last couple of weeks,” said Dean. “I think we’ve shown all year long we’ve had fast No. 32 GREE Cooling Products | Baker Distributing Chevrolets, but for one reason or another – we haven’t been able to reel in the finishes I know we’re capable of.
 
“The last two races at Michigan and Madison, we’ve done that and done it well. I’m heading to Gateway this weekend, a track I’ve never been too – but that could be a really good thing for us.”
 
Dean is right.
 
Visiting race tracks he’s never competed at paid off well during his rookie season of competition last year. On 10 different occasions in 2017, the 23-year-old produced 10 top-10 finishes at race tracks he’s never seen before.
 
With an open-test at the 1.25-mile oval on Thursday, Dean is optimistic he can make it 11 top-10 runs under the St. Louis lights Friday night.
 
“I think we’ve seen that testing has really paid off for our Win-Tron Racing team this year,” offered Dean. “Charlotte was a big indicator of that. We were pretty good at the test, came back and we were better even though we didn’t get the finish I felt like we deserved. While the turnaround is much quicker this week at Gateway, I think that could be a good thing for Jamie (Jones, crew chief) and I.
 
“I hope so.” 
 
No matter what though, the former Talladega ARCA race winner says it’s important for his team to keep posting strong finishes as the series’ approaches its halfway point in 2018.
 
“We’ve been able to make some steady gains in the point standings over the last two weeks,” mentioned Dean. “The top spot is still a long way off – but there’s still plenty of racing left on the table.
 
We just need to keep our head down and focused on ourselves like we’ve been doing and hopefully, we can get a win or two here in the next couple of races. I feel like we are close.
 
"Very close.”
 
Win-Tron Racing car owner Kevin Cywinski says the team’s strong performance at Madison shows the growth between the driver and crew chief – but as well as their program.
 
“Gus and Jamie are really working well together right now,” added Cywinski. “Madison was a great example of that. We just need to keep going to the race track and stay focused and hopefully, the results will speak for itself.
 
“Everyone on this GREE Racing team won’t be satisfied until we’re in Victory Lane, but I think we’re showing everyone that’s capable of happening sooner rather than later.”
 
In 36 career ARCA Racing Series starts, Dean captured his first career victory in his second ever start at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway after starting a career-best second in Apr. 2016. Overall, Dean has 10 top-five and 21 top-10 finishes.
 
The PapaNicholas Coffee 150 (120 laps |150 miles) is the 10th of 20 races on the 2018 ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards schedule. Practice begins Fri., June 22 with an hour session planned from 12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. A final 55-minute practice session has been etched in from 1:30 p.m. – 2:25 p.m. General Tire pole qualifying is set for later in the day at 5:30 p.m. The race is set to take the green flag later in the day shortly after 8:00 p.m. The event will be broadcasted live on FOX Sports 2, while ARCARacing.com will stream live timing and scoring throughout the week’s activities. All times are local (CT). 
 
For more on Gus Dean, please visit his all new website at GusDean.com or like him on Facebook.  Dean tweets too. Follow him on Twitter @GusDean.
 
For additional information on GREE Racing, please like them on Facebook and follow them on Twitter @GREE_Racing. 
 
Learn more at Win-TronRacing.com, Facebook or on Twitter @WinTronRacing.

WinTron Racing PR

Rookie Natalie Decker will make her tenth ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards start of season with Venturini Motorsports Friday, June 22 in the PapaNicholas Coffee 150 at Gateway Motorsports Park.

Coming off her fourth top-10 of the season last week at Madison, the 20-year old Wisconsin driver will resume her duties behind the wheel of her familiar red and white No.25 N29 Capital Partners – Yamaha Power Products Toyota Camry.

Running ARCA’s full 20-race slate and quickly approaching the halfway point of the season, Decker looks ahead, ready to heat up throughout the upcoming summer schedule.

“We’ve had a decent start but have a lot more to prove the second half of the season,” says Decker.

“I’m just really excited to move forward. I’m back and feeling 100%. My team and sponsors have been really supportive and given me a great opportunity this year. The goal is to get back in the car and perform at the highest level. We’re going back to some tracks for the second time, so I have a lot more confidence at places like Pocono, Salem and Kansas.”

“I feel we’ve made some big gains but still have some work to do. There’s always room for improvement. Working on my qualifying runs is something I’ll focus on. We’re always good in the race but starting with better track position will help, especially on the speedways. Gateway is next – I’ll be ready.”

Decker, currently occupying the seventh spot in the ARCA Series’ driver point standings will be a part of history when the series visits Chicagoland Speedway next Thursday for the running of the Scott 150. Joining teammates Toni Breidinger and Leilani Münter, the trio of female drivers will be the first ever to compete in the same race under one team’s banner.

The ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards will make its return to Gateway Motorsports Park for the first time since 2007 with Friday's Papa Nicholas Coffee 150. The event will mark the halfway point of the series' 2018 season.

The PapaNicholas Coffee 150 is the tenth race of the 2018 ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards season. The race will be broadcast live on Fox Sports 2 at 9 pm Eastern/8 pm local on Friday, June 22. ARCARacing.com will have live timing and scoring of practice, qualifying and the race for registered members.

VMS PR

The only NASCAR race outside North America, taking place in downtown Tours, France on June 30 - July 1 will have three special public announcers to further add to the excitement surrounding the Oval World Challenge.

Thanks to the partnership with AB Moteurs, hugely popular NASCAR commentators Pat Angeli & Philippe Chereau will return for the sixth time to entertain the fans at Tours Speedway with their unique style together with TF1’s Formula 1 commentator and big NASCAR fan Adrien Paviot. While Pat & Phil will be the speakers for three of the four rounds of the OWC, Paviot will take on two roles by driving in NASCAR for the first time in the ELITE 2 Division and announcing the last race of the weekend.

“The French round of the NASCAR Whelen Euro series is always a special moment in the season for all of us. We had the chance to follow all the races held at Tours Speedway and we lived – more than seen – this incredible evolution,” said Philippe Chereau, who underlined the strength of the French “national team” in their home race. “The track evolved but most of all the competition and the show evolved and never stopped improving and intensifying year after year. This year we’ll see if Fred Gabillon will confirm his statistics on oval and make us French proud! We’ll also be happy to meet NASCAR champion Bobby Labonte after having the pleasure to commentate his races and his Cup title on AB Moteurs a few years ago and we are also excited to meet all the many « nascariens et nascariennes » who, I hope, will come to the track.”

Pat & Phil will host Q&A sessions with the protagonists of the Oval World Challenge together with NWES commentator Mark Werrell on Saturday evening at 8pm. They will also meet their many fans in person in the paddock between the races before meeting them again – live on AB Moteurs – on Sunday evening for the Chicagoland Speedway Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series.

“Among the numerous fans following NASCAR on AB Moteurs every Sunday night, many never saw a race in person,” said Pat Angeli. “The NASCAR Whelen Euro Series gives them this opportunity thanks to this event at Tours, which is also an oval track and that’s pretty rare in Europe. We’ll be happy to share this event with them and join the drivers of this series which is becoming bigger and bigger every season.”

A passionate NASCAR fan and a French Champion in Formula France in 2004, TF1’s Formula 1 commentator Adrien Paviot can’t wait to make his NASCAR debut on the 650m banked oval purpose-built in downtown Tours.

"To race in NASCAR Whelen Euro Series at Tours is something very special for me. I grew up at 11km from the Tours Speedway so, and as fan of NASCAR since I'm 15, the Oval World Challenge is the perfect event to do my first Nascar race. I had a first glimpse of my dream some weeks ago when I tried a stock car on an oval in US, but now my dream really comes true thanks to Jérôme Galpin and his team,” said Paviot. “In addition, I will have my friends Philippe Chereau and Pat Angeli from AB Moteurs with me, I just hope that they will not speak too loudly in the microphones so I can stay focus on my race  I will be happy to meet the fans and to share my 2 passions, drive a race car and speak in a micro as I will also be the commentator of the Sunday Elite 1 race."

The Oval World Challenge will take place on June 30 - July 1 at Tours and will be highlighted by non-stop action on track with Euro NASCAR, Legend Cars Cup and Drift and plenty of family fun trackside. Tickets are available on the official website with prices starting from 12€.

NASCAR Euro Series PR