Speedway Digest Staff
Follow us on Twitter @SpeedwayDigest
First Arab American Female Driver in Nascar, Toni Breidinger, to Full Time in 2022 With Toyota Racing Development, Venturini Motorsports
Toyota Racing Development’s Venturini Motorsports (VMS) announced today the selection of 22-year-old female athlete, Toni Breidinger, as the full-time driver for the No.25 Toyota Camry for NASCAR’s upcoming 2022 ARCA Menards Series season.
Possessing the talent and dynamic personality needed on and off the racetrack, Breidinger’s racing career has been trending upward leading to her first full-season opportunity in the ARCA Menards Series. Setting her sights on reaching the highest ranks of NASCAR, Breidinger’s tireless efforts are sharply focused on honing her skills both behind the wheel and mentally for this next stage in her career.
“This is a proud moment not only for me but also my family. I’m incredibly excited for the opportunity to run my first full season in NASCAR’s ARCA with Venturini Motorsports and Toyota,” said the first Arab American female driver to compete in NASCAR.
“I’ve worked a lifetime to get to this point in my career. It’s taken a lot of hard work and support from countless people. Racing is a business. It takes more than just desire. I truly cannot thank my supporters and business partners enough for believing and providing the support to get me to this stage. There’s still a lot of work ahead but I’m ready to get this season started at Daytona.”
Ready to embark on her highly anticipated 2022 racing campaign next month on racing’s brightest stage, Daytona International Speedway, Breidinger carries support from Hairclub, and Pit Viper Sunglasses.
Breidinger became the first Arab American female driver in NASCAR in 2021 with her Daytona debut. With 12-career starts in ARCA’s premier touring series, Breidinger has earned three top-10 finishes in limited action. Breidinger also carries the notable label as the first minority driver to achieve this level without going through NASCAR’s diversity program.
Moving up through the ranks in motorsports, she grabbed attention early on competing in the United States Automobile Club (USAC), with 19 victories. Transitioning in her late teens from open wheel midgets to stock cars, Breidinger’s relentless efforts are paying dividends.
Serving as Toyota Racing Development’s (TRD) official driver development program, VMS possesses a rich tradition of winning in the ARCA Menards Series with over 75 wins and two national championships. Also best known for their success preparing tomorrow’s future NASCAR stars for the spotlight at the highest level of the sport.
Breidinger and VMS will begin their quest at Daytona International Speedway in the series’ season opener Lucas Oil 200 driven by General Tire on Saturday, February 19. The race will air live on FS1 and Fox Sports App beginning at 1:30pm EST.
Follow Toni Breidinger on all her social media channels on Instagram @tonibreidinger, on Twitter @ToniBreidinger, on TikTok @tonibreidinger, and Facebook @ToniBreidingerRacing.
The driver and race team seeing the checkered flag first on all three types of circuits in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES can win $1 million in the 2022 season for themselves and a charity through the new PeopleReady Force for Good Challenge.
The PeopleReady Force for Good Challenge is part of a new partnership between industrial staffing giant PeopleReady and INDYCAR.
The first driver who wins at least once this season on the three types of tracks that comprise the NTT INDYCAR SERIES schedule – road course, street circuit and oval – will share $500,000 with their team and donate $500,000 to that driver and team’s chosen charity.
“The PeopleReady Force for Good Challenge will help drive home PeopleReady’s mission to connect people and work as a force for good in the communities they serve while highlighting the skill of NTT INDYCAR SERIES teams and drivers and our collective commitment to helping others,” Penske Entertainment Corp. President and CEO Mark Miles said. “This program will keep fans engaged all season and continue to raise vital awareness for a variety of worthy charities.”
History shows there’s a very good chance of a driver, team and charity winning big in 2022 through the PeopleReady Force for Good Challenge. One driver achieved the feat of winning on a road course, street circuit and oval for six consecutive seasons from 2015-20, with that streak finally ending last season (see chart below).
A Team Penske driver won on all three types of tracks in a season four times in five years between 2016-20, with Josef Newgarden in 2017 and 2020, Simon Pagenaud in 2019 and Will Power in 2016.
“Our partnership with INDYCAR will accelerate our ability to put work and workforces within reach by raising awareness with race fans,” said Taryn Owen, president and COO of PeopleReady. “We are excited to challenge all NTT INDYCAR SERIES drivers to compete for the grand prize of $1 million and provide them with the opportunity to give back to a charity they are passionate about.”
There will be a winner in all 17 races this season, even if a driver can’t pull off the “triple crown” of winning on all three types of INDYCAR circuits. PeopleReady is offering an additional $10,000 to the winner of every race this season, also to be split with their selected charity.
“PeopleReady is committed to making a difference through our mission and by giving back to the communities we serve,” said Patrick Beharelle, CEO of TrueBlue, the parent company of PeopleReady. “We are excited for the opportunity to amplify that work through the PeopleReady Force for Good Challenge in partnership with the talented NTT INDYCAR SERIES teams and drivers.”
Recent Winners on Road, Street, Oval in Same NTT INDYCAR SERIES Season
Josef Newgarden (Team Penske)
Iowa, Indy RC, St. Petersburg
Simon Pagenaud (Team Penske)
Indy RC, Indy Oval, Toronto
Alexander Rossi (Andretti Autosport)
Long Beach, Mid-Ohio, Pocono
Josef Newgarden (Team Penske)
Barber, Toronto, Mid-Ohio, Gateway
Will Power (Team Penske)
Detroit, Road America, Toronto, Pocono
Scott Dixon (Chip Ganassi Racing)
Long Beach, Texas, Sonoma
IndyCar Series PR
New tracks are set to debut in the 13th season of the eNASCAR Coca-Cola iRacing Series with drivers competing on virtual circuits that more closely mirror the NASCAR Cup Series schedule. Six tracks make a first-time appearance on the 19-race calendar, including the much-anticipated Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, which opens the season with an exhibition race on Tuesday, February 1.
“We’re raising the bar with the most competitive virtual racing in the world and leaning into iRacing’s technology to blur the lines between virtual and reality,” said Nick Rend, Managing Director of Gaming and Esports, NASCAR. “The eNASCAR Coca-Cola iRacing Series has grown monumentally over the past two seasons with new investments made by teams, drivers and world-class partners. This season will be no different as we anticipate more intense competition among drivers testing their clout on new and historic tracks alike.”
The L.A. Coliseum virtual exhibition race will run in conjunction with the NASCAR Cup Series’ preseason debut at the same real-life venue on Sunday, February 6. iRacing played a vital role in the track’s design with NASCAR Cup Series drivers and eNASCAR Coca-Cola iRacing Series competitors simulating test runs on different setups to develop its configuration for NASCAR.
In addition to the L.A. Coliseum, virtual events will also debut at the newly reconfigured Atlanta Motor Speedway, Bristol Dirt Race, Dover International Speedway, World Wide Technology Raceway and Nashville Superspeedway. For the first time in its history, the series will conclude at Phoenix Raceway on October 25.
“The 2022 eNASCAR Coca-Cola iRacing Series season is shaping up to be one of our most exciting yet,” said Tony Gardner, iRacing President. “With a refreshed schedule, led by our opening exhibition at the L.A. Coliseum, a track developed in iRacing, the pursuit of this year’s championship will take some exciting new turns this year. We’re excited to kick off the chase for one of the largest purses in sim racing, with well over $300,000 on the line, and look forward to crowning a champion in Phoenix!”
Competition will again be tight with 20 teams and 40 drivers contending for the championship. 2021 eNASCAR Coca-Cola iRacing Series champion Keegan Leahy returns to defend his title with team owners including Denny Hamlin and Michael Jordan, Dale Earnhardt Jr., and Kansas City Chiefs player Kyle Long securing drivers for the upcoming season. Professional Esports organization Charlotte Phoenix will also join the competition. Teams have begun to announce their 2022 driver lineups this week on Twitter.
The full 2022 eNASCAR Coca-Cola iRacing Series schedule is as follows*:
- February 1: L.A. Coliseum Exhibition
- February 15: Daytona International Speedway
- March 1: Las Vegas Motor Speedway
- March 15: Atlanta Motor Speedway
- March 29: Richmond Raceway
- April 12: Bristol Dirt Race
- April 26: Dover International Speedway
- May 10: Kansas Speedway
- May 24: Charlotte Motor Speedway
- May 31: World Wide Technology Raceway
- June 21: Nashville Superspeedway
- July 5: Road America
- July 19: Pocono Raceway
- August 16: Watkins Glen International
- August 30: Darlington Raceway
- September 13: Bristol Motor Speedway^
- September 27: Talladega Superspeedway^
- October 11: Homestead-Miami Speedway^
- October 25: Phoenix Raceway^
^Denotes Playoffs Event
*Subject to change
All races will be broadcast live on eNASCAR.com and iRacing.com/live, as well as the NASCAR and iRacing Facebook and YouTube channels. Race streams will kick off at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT.
Spencer Boyd announced today that RimTyme Custom Wheels & Tires, the company with the largest wheel and tire inventory in the industry, will be the anchor to his sponsorship platform in 2022. RimTyme is slated to be the primary sponsor of the Young’s Motorsports No. 12 Chevrolet Silverado for seven races in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and an associate sponsor for the remainder of the season.
“RimTyme has stepped up in a big way with this partnership,” said Boyd. “They saw some great growth in many of their stores following the Roval race we did together last year so they want to expand their reach. We even overlayed a map of their stores with NASCAR tracks which shows RimTyme is in racing’s backyard. I’m personally grateful for the opportunity to represent this company and all the employees they have working as my extended pit crew.”
RimTyme Custom Wheels and Tires carries more custom rims than the traditional wheel shop. They have a large selection of name brand custom wheels available in the latest styles, finishes, colors, and sizes. In addition to a variety of wheel brands, RimTyme carries popular tire brands for everyday driving needs at affordable prices to fit any budget.
“We’re excited,” exclaimed Brock Roberts of RimTyme. “This partnership with Spencer is coming at a pivotal point as we expand our RimTyme footprint. We are continually adding stores brand-wide, now with 37 locations that have experts to help guide NASCAR fans to the right wheel and tire package for their vehicles. We’ll also be launching a new promotion that when Spencer finishes 12th place or higher in a race, we will give customers $212 off a new rim and tire package at select locations. We can’t wait for Daytona!”
As part of the partnership there will be several chances to meet Spencer and see the RimTyme truck up close this year. Kicking off the season, RimTyme will be set up across from Daytona International Speedway at a Sunoco station where Spencer will be signing autographs throughout the Daytona 500 weekend. The RimTyme No. 12 show truck will also be visiting several RimTyme stores throughout the year starting on April 2 at the new Conyers, GA location.
“It’s going to be a great year for the No. 12 team,” smiled Boyd. “We are going to build off of the nail-biting win last year at Talladega and come out of the gate strong at Daytona. I’m humbled to be given this opportunity by Tyler Young and will make the men and women on the 12 team proud.”
The first appearance for the No. 12 RimTyme Chevrolet Silverado will be the season opener at Daytona International Speedway on February 18, 2022. Find a RimTyme Custom Wheels and Tires location near you at www.rimtyme.com/locations.
Spencer Boyd PR
Campbell Motorsports, Derek Thorn, and his primary partners including PepperJack Kennels, The Tool Shack, and Power Grade Inc. have announced a major event schedule across the country for the 2022 season. Thorn will compete in at least six marquee events with ten total starts, across Super and Pro Late Models, planned aboard No.43 PepperJack Kennels/The Tool Shack Toyotas for Byron and Carol Campbell.
“When we discussed with the team and team owner Byron Campbell what everyone wanted to do in 2022 it became apparent quickly that we wanted to go racing more back east in 2022. I think the Campbell group, Derek and his fans deserve the year we are all planning,” said Misty Melo of PepperJack Kennels.
Thorn’s races will be broadcast live on Speed51 TV on Racing America and on SPEARS Racing TV on SPEED SPORT TV.
The campaign opens on February 5th with the All-Star Showdown at Irwindale Speedway in California where Thorn will look for the $25,000 triumph in the 200-lap contest. The 2021 All-Star Showdown was the only SPEARS SRL Southwest Tour event that Thorn did not win in 2021, leading 33 laps before ultimately finishing 26th after a parts failure.
A new event on April 8th and 9th will bring Thorn back to Five Flags Speedway in Pensacola, Florida to race in the growing Southern Super Series, Super Late Model competition which will pay $10,000 to win each night with a bonus if a driver can sweep the weekend being put up by PepperJack Kennels owner Misty Melo.
On July 22-23, Thorn will race in the Pro and Super Late Model events at Evergreen Speedway in Monroe, Washington for the Summer Showdown. Thorn qualified second in both divisions in 2021 and has a career-best Super Late Model Summer Showdown finish of second in 2016.
The travels east continue August 10 with the $30,000-to-win Battle at Berlin at Berlin Raceway in Marne, Michigan. It will be Thorn’s first trip to the uniquely shaped oval in over 10 years and is sure to draw most of the top talented drivers in the country.
Thorn has unfinished business when he returns in his Pro Late and Super Late Model in the All-American 400 at Nashville Fairgrounds in Tennessee on October 29th. He led a race-best 202 laps in 2020, with over 350 career laps led, before being involved in a late race incident that took him out of contention.
The exciting schedule of marquee races concludes with the biggest short track race of the year at the famed Five Flags Speedway in the Snowflake 100 and 55th Snowball Derby, December 3rd and 4th. Thorn will defend his Snowflake 100 title and continue his march towards the Snowball Derby victory and the Tom Dawson trophy.
“This will be an exciting year for everyone involved. I can’t thank the Campbell Family enough for all the years they have given me the chance to race in a great program and all my sponsors that support us – and a thank you to all my fans!,” Thorn said.
Partnership packages are still available to join Campbell Motorsports for businesses of all sizes, to partner with one of the most decorated teams and driver within asphalt short-track racing, please contact Marty Melo at (530) 941-5642.
Campbell Motorsports and Derek Thorn are supported by:
PepperJack Kennels, The Tool Shack, Power Grade Inc., Double Eagle Produce and Transportation, Reeves Complete Auto Center, Family Funeral & Cremation, Destined4Destruction Action Figure, Fury Race Cars, Essex AP Racing, Swift Springs, JRI Shocks, Magnus, Tilton, Finishline Signs, Five Star Body, Performance Parts and Supply, Joiner Motorsports, Bassett, K1 Race Gear, Hightower Racing Transmissions Inc.,51 Fifty LTM, Strange Oval, West Air, Joes Racing Products, Blakesley Sports Media, 9D Creative and Seal Master of Bakersfield, CA.
Derek Thorn PR
Ryan Truex Returns to NASCAR Xfinity Series Competition at Daytona International Speedway with Sam Hunt Racing
NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Champion Ryan Preece will compete in multiple NASCAR Cup Series races in 2022 for Rick Ware Racing (RWR) as a part of the team's alliance with Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR). Preece’s first race behind the wheel of the No. 15 Ford Mustang will be the inaugural Busch Light Clash at The Coliseum Feb. 6 at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.
Preece, the Berlin, Connecticut native, has competed in the NASCAR Cup Series, NASCAR Xfinity Series, NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour, where he’s collected a combined (28) wins.
"Ryan is a great addition to the RWR lineup for 2022," commented team owner, Rick Ware. “His talent on the race track has been shown through his achievements in the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour and NASCAR Xfinity Series. Our alliance with SHR and Ford has allowed us to put a wheelman behind the wheel, starting at the quarter-mile showdown in LA.”
“Being a part of the Clash at the LA Memorial Coliseum is special to me because of the opportunity it presents,” said Preece. “A 1/4 mile bullring is the type of racetrack that I have had a lot of success on, and I’m looking forward to the future races ahead as well.“
Primary sponsors will be announced at a later date.
The inaugural Busch Light Clash at The Coliseum is set for February 6, 2022. For more information on Rick Ware Racing, visit www.wareracing.com, or follow along on social media; Twitter, Facebook, Instagram.
Rico Abreu passed Jason McDougal on lap 14, then held off a late charge from Kevin Thomas Jr. to win Wednesday’s Hard Rock Casino Qualifying Night at the 36th annual Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Nationals. Blake Hahn finished third to give Toyota two of the top three finishers on the night.
The victory is the third straight for a Toyota driver in the first three nights of qualifying and marks the seventh preliminary feature win for Abreu in the last eight years. With the win, the two-time Chili Bowl champ will advance directly to Saturday’s A Main feature event.
After starting the race from the inside of row two, Abreu fell back to fifth early before making his move back up through the field. After taking over the second spot, he would eventually throw a slider at McDougal in turn two to take over the top spot. The two-time Chili Bowl champion had to fight off a number of challenges the rest of the way but held on for the win.
Hahn started the race from the eighth position and climbed into the top five early on his way to the podium. He will open Saturday’s event in the B Main.
Also earning top-10 finishes on the night were Brad Sweet in sixth and Chance Crum in eighth – each will start in the B Mains on Saturday. Overall, seven Toyotas advanced to the night’s A Main, with Dominic Gordon finishing 12th, Taylor Reimer was 18th and Robert Dalby came home in 23rd.
This year’s Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Nationals features 395 entries - each fighting for one of the 24 openings in Saturday night’s A Main feature event. Qualifying continues for each of the next two nights.
Rico Abreu: “The track slowed down and got pretty technical. I just focused on minimizing my mistakes. All in all, the balance of my Rowdy Energy Toyota was pretty good. I knew that the top was eventually going to slow down, and the bottom would come in. Any time you put yourself in this position in this event for Saturday, it’s pretty special. I really get a kick out of our Keith Kunz Motorsports team getting the sensation of winning with some new crew members this year.”
Blake Hahn: “Being up here (in the top three) was really our goal for tonight. I feel I made a few mistakes early on and had to fight my way back up to the top. I just focused on hitting my marks and late we put ourselves in a position to challenge for the win if anyone made a mistake.”
Toyota Wednesday Results
A Main – 1st
A Main – 3th
A Main – 6th
A Main – 8th
A Main – 12th
A Main – 18th
A Main – 23rd
B Main – 6th
B Main – 8th
B Main – 11th
B Main - 16th
C Main – 6th
C Main – 9th
D Main – 4th
Officials from Macon Speedway and Lincoln Speedway, as well as Hickory Point Mall in Forsyth, IL are pleased to announce the return of the season preview car show. The show is set to return Friday, March 4-Sunday, March 6 after a two-year hiatus due to COVID-19.
The car show is open to any regular competitors that race at Macon Speedway or Lincoln Speedway, as well as those from traveling series that compete at either of the tracks. The show will be three days long with cars entering on Thursday, March 3 and exiting on Sunday, March 6 when Hickory Point Mall closes for business each of the two days.
The show is a great benefit to those who like to display their newly prepared rides before receiving battle scars from on track action. It's also an additional benefit to sponsors, putting them in front of thousands of sets of eyes over the course of the show. Track Enterprises will also have a booth set up, handing out info including pocket schedules for their special events in addition to Macon Speedway and Lincoln Speedway.
Hickory Point Mall opened in 1978 and is located in Forsyth, IL, the northside of the greater Decatur area. It features Kohl's, Ross, TJ Maxx, Von Maur, and Hobby Lobby in addition to a large number of specialty shops.
Upcoming Early Season Race Events
Saturday, January 22 – Macon Speedway, Lincoln Speedway, & Big 10 Series Awards Banquet (Decatur Conference Center
Friday-Sunday, March 4-6 – Hickory Point Mall Racecar Show
Saturday, March 26 – Macon Speedway Test & Tune (12:00-4:00)
Sunday, March 27 – Lincoln Speedway Test & Tune (12:00-4:00)
Saturday, April 2 – Macon Speedway Test & Tune (12:00-4:00)
Sunday, April 3 – Lincoln Speedway Test & Tune (12:00-4:00)
Friday, April 8 – Lincoln Speedway Season Opener
Saturday, April 9 – Macon Speedway Season Opener
Macon/Lincoln Speedway PR