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The NASCAR K&N Pro Series East makes its annual visit to Columbus (Ohio) Motor Speedway this week for the NAPA AUTO PARTS 150 on Saturday.

 

Todd Gilliland is set to make his fourth series start in his rookie year as the circuit competes on the third-mile oval.

 

The NAPA AUTO PARTS 150, which will be televised on NBCSN on July 8 at 12 p.m. ET, is the eighth event on a 14-race series schedule. It marks the sixth visit by the K&N East to the Ohio speedway since 2011.

 

Gilliland is driving the No. 16 NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota Camry on the full schedule in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West this season, while also competing in select K&N East races. The 16-year-old rookie from Sherrills Ford, North Carolina is a member of the NASCAR Next program that spotlights NASCAR’s rising stars.

 

He has one win, two top-five, and three top-10 finishes in his three previous K&N East starts. In addition to his win in the season opener at Florida’s New Smyrna Speedway in February, he finished fifth at Connecticut’s Stafford Motor Speedway in June, and ninth at Bristol (Tennessee) Motor Speedway in April.

 

Gilliland is second in the championship standings of the K&N West, and leads the rookie points on that circuit – with two wins and five top-five finishes in the first six races.

 

On-track action for the K&N East at Columbus Motor Speedway on Saturday includes practice sessions from 2:15 to 3 p.m. and from 3:15 to 4 p.m. Qualifying is slated for 6:30 p.m., with the race set to go green at 9 p.m.

 

Activities for the holiday weekend in Columbus get underway on Friday. Gilliland and BMR’s NAPA team hauler will participate in festivities and a parade in downtown Columbus that evening as part of the big Red, White & Boom celebration.

 

The K&N East race at Columbus marks the fourth of six consecutive weekends of competition for Gilliland. His schedule includes three K&N East races: Stafford Motor Speedway on June 17, Columbus on July 2, and New Hampshire Motor Speedway on July 16; and three K&N West races: Colorado National Speedway on June 11; Sonoma (California) Raceway on June 25; and Stateline Speedway in Post Falls, Idaho on July 9.

BMR PR

ARCA Racing Series veteran and championship contender Josh Williams earned his sixth top-ten finish of the 2016 season at the Winchester Speedway where he earned a hard fought sixth place finish. The finish marked his best career finish at the ultra-high banked half-mile speedway in five starts.

“We had a really good driving car all day,” a tired Williams stated after the 200 lap event. “We weren’t lying when we said we were 35 horsepower down going to Madison. You need power here and it showed today. Hopefully we will have a new motor by Iowa and try and get our third win of the season.”

“Overall it was a good afternoon in driver points and the short track points. We still have a car to take home in one piece and work on it to make it better for Iowa.”

Winchester marked the final leg of a six race stretch for the ARCA Racing Series. During the summer run Williams earned one win (Madison) and four top-ten finishes. Teams will have a one week break before heading to the .75-mile short track at the Iowa Speedway located in Newton, Iowa.

Williams continues to prove he’s the model of consistency and remains second in national driver points trailing leader Chase Briscoe by 165 points through ten races. The 22-year-old leads continues to lead the Short Track Challenge presented by Protect Plus points. In five short track starts in 2016 Williams average finish is an impressive 5.4 the average includes two wins (Nashville and Madison).

Teams will have two practice sessions, qualify and race on Saturday, July 9th. Fans will be able to watch the race live on Fox Sports 2 at 9:00 p.m. EST.

Follow JWM on Social Media: To keep up-to-date with the latest, news, information and race updates, follow Josh’s Twitter page @Josh6williams and “like” his Facebook page at  Josh Williams Motorsports

Josh Williams PR

42 Cars Entered For Sahlen’s Six Hours Of The Glen

Written by
Published in Racing News
Tuesday, 28 June 2016 14:54

The top-three finishing GTE Pro teams and the winning GTE Am team from the recent 24 Hours of Le Mans return to IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship competition in the Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen, set for Sunday, July 3, at Watkins Glen International.

 

IMSA today released a 42-car entry list for the event, which serves as Round 6 of the WeatherTech Championship and Round 3 of the Tequila Patrón North American Endurance Cup. The six-hour race on the 3.4-mile circuit will be televised live on FS1, beginning at 10 a.m. ET.

 

Ford Chip Ganassi Racing headlines the GT Le Mans (GTLM) class entry with the Joey Hand and Dirk Mueller in the No. 66 Ford GT, the same car that won the GTE Pro class at Le Mans. They will be joined by teammates Richard Westbrook and Ryan Briscoe, drivers of the No. 67 Ford GT, which finished third at Le Mans. The Fords sandwiched the Risi Competizione Ferrari 488 GTE and drivers Giancarlo Fisichella and Toni Villander on the Le Mans podium. The Ferrari will carry No. 62 at The Glen.

 

Scuderia Corsa captured the GTE Am class for Ferrari in the French classic. That team returns to Watkins Glen leading the GT Daytona (GTD) standings with drivers Christina Nielsen and Alessandro Balzan, who hold an eight-point lead in the class co-driving the No. 63 Scuderia Corsa Ferrari 488 GT3. They will be joined at The Glen by Le Mans class winner Jeff Segal.

 

The lead Prototype class has a 10-car entry. Tequila Patrón ESM will be looking to continue its mastery of 2016 WeatherTech Championship endurance races, with Scott Sharp, Johannes van Overbeek and Pipo Derani driving the No. 2 Tequila Patrón Honda Ligier JS P2 that opened the year by winning both the Rolex 24 At Daytona and Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Fueled by Fresh From Florida. They will be joined in the Honda camp by the No. 60 Curb Records/AERO Honda Ligier JS P2 of Ozz Negri, John Pew and Olivier Pla.

 

Visit Florida Racing is seeking its third consecutive Sahlen’s Six Hours victory with new drivers, with Ryan Dalziel and Marc Goossens now sharing the No. 90 Corvette DP.

 

"Le Mans week felt like a race season all on its own, so once it’s over, you for sure take a deep breath and a few days off,” said Dalziel, who drove for Tequila Patrón ESM in the French classic. “I spent a few days in Paris afterwards just to chill out a bit. Our race didn't go as planned, but having both cars take the checkered flag was really a huge achievement. Now my focus shifts to Watkins Glen and getting Visit Florida its first victory of 2016."

 

The Prototype championship lead is currently shared by two teams, Jordan and Ricky Taylor in the No. 10 Konica Minolta Corvette DP and two-time defending champions Joao Barbosa and Christian Fittipaldi in the No. 5 Mustang Sampling/Cider Tree Corvette DP. Completing the four-car Corvette entry is the No. 31 Whelen Engineering/Team Fox entry of Eric Curran and Dane Cameron, who are currently third in the standings, four points behind the co-leaders, 151-147.

 

Rounding out the Prototype entry are two Mazda Motorsports Prototypes, the No. 55 for Tristan Nunez, Jonathan Bomarito and Spencer Pigot, plus the No. 70 for Tom Long, Joel Miller and Ben Devlin; the No. 0 Panoz DeltaWing Coupe of Katherine Legge, Sean Rayhall and Gabby Chaves; and the No. 50 Highway to Help/Fifty Plus Racing BMW Riley of Jim Pace, Dorsey Schroeder and Byron DeFoor.

 

GTLM features a 10-car entry, two each from Ford, Ferrari, Corvette, Porsche and BMW. In addition to the Risi Competizione entry, Scuderia Corsa will field the No. 68 Ferrari 488 GTE for Alessandro Pier Guidi and Daniel Serra. Porsche will race the No. 911 Porsche 911 RSR for defending GTLM champion Patrick Pilet and Nick Tandy, joined by the No. 912 for Earl Bamber and Frederic Makowiecki. Corvette Racing returns its two cars from Le Mans, the No. 3 Corvette C7.R for Antonio Garcia and Jan Magnussen, plus the No. 4 for class point leaders Oliver Gavin and Tommy Milner. BMW Team RLL has a pair of IHG Rewards Club-sponsored BMW M6 GTLMs, the No. 25 for Bill Auberlen and Dirk Werner, and the No. 100 for John Edwards and Lucas Luhr.

 

Starworks Motorsport defends its PC victory at The Glen with Renger van der Zande and Alex Popow returning in the No. 8 ORECA FLM09. The pair won at Detroit to take a three-point lead in the class. Mark Kvamme will share the second Starworks entry, the No. 88 Popcorn Sutton ORECA, with Sean Johnston and Maro Engel.

 

Robert Alon and Tom Kimber-Smith are second in the PC standings – three points back – and will be joined by Jose Gutierrez in the No. 52 PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports Prisma/Professional Security Consultants/Westfield ORECA. Two-time defending class champions Colin Braun and Jon Bennett return for CORE autosport, joined by entries from BAR 1 Motorsports, Performance Tech Motorsports and JDC-Miller Motorsports.

 

The GTD class has 15 entries – including the debut of Lamborghini in the Sahlen’s Six Hours. Former Rochester-area resident Paul Miller has one of the four Huracán GT3s, the No. 48 Castrol Edge/Universal Industrial Sales Huracán GT3 for Madison Snow and 2015 Sahlen’s Six Hour GTLM winner Bryan Sellers. Change Racing has entered a pair of Lamborghinis, with Dream Racing completing the Lamborghini entry.

 

Dodge Viper, the 2015 winner at The Glen, has the No. 33 ViperExchange.com/Gas Monkey Garage Dodge Viper GT3-R for Detroit winners Ben Keating and Jeroen Bleekemolen.

 

Porsche has a four-car GTD entry. Alex Job Racing fields the No. 22 WeatherTech Porsche GT3 R for Cooper MacNeil, Leh Keen and Gunnar Jeannette and the No. 23 Team Seattle/Heart of Racing Porsche for Mario Farnbacher, Alex Riberas and Ian James. Also fielding new Porsche GT3 Rs are Park Place Racing, with the No. 73 for Patrick Lindsey, Joerg Bergmeister and Matt McMurry; and Black Swan Racing with the No. 540 driven by Timothy Pappas and Nicky Catsburg.

 

Audi is set with three cars, including two for Stevenson Motorsports and one for Magnus Racing, while Turner Motorsport campaigns a pair of BMW M6 GT3s.

 

Practice for the Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen begins at 11:25 a.m. ET on Friday, July 1, with qualifying on Saturday at 3:40 p.m. ET. The full race will air live on FS1 beginning at 10 a.m. ET on July 3.

 

Tequila Patrón ESM returns to IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship competition for the Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen on Sunday, July 3, looking for its third consecutive overall triumph in the 2016 Tequila Patrón North American Endurance Cup.

 

Scott Sharp, Johannes van Overbeek and Pipo Derani return to the wheel of the No. 2 Tequila Patrón Honda Ligier JS P2 at Watkins Glen International, looking to extend their winning streak that began with the season-opening Rolex 24 At Daytona and continued at the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Fueled by Fresh From Florida.

 

“I can’t wait to be back in IMSA and the Tequila Patrón Endurance Cup driving the green Patrón car,” said Derani, who won in his first races at both Daytona and Sebring. “Watkins Glen will be a new track for me again, but I think this won’t be a problem and we will be competitive straight out of the box.”

 

With the Patrón Endurance Cup awarding points at different segments within the four longest races in the WeatherTech Championship, Tequila Patrón ESM enters the Sahlen’s Six Hours tied for the lead in the Prototype class with Action Express Racing’s No. 5 Mustang Sampling/Cider Tree Corvette DP of Christian Fittipaldi and Joao Barbosa, with 26 points apiece. The Sahlen’s Six Hours will award points at the three-hour mark and finish, with five points for first; four points for second; three points for third; and two points for all remaining competitors.

 

“As drivers we focus on winning the race, but we were able to get segment wins at Daytona and Sebring because we led a good portion of both races,” said Fittipaldi, who joins Barbosa in seeking third consecutive titles in both the WeatherTech Championship and Patrón Endurance Cup. “When your focus is on winning the race and you make smart choices out on the track, the points and the championships fall into place.”

 

The No. 31 Action Express Whelen Engineering/Team Fox Corvette DP is third in the team standings with 23 points. Drivers Eric Curran and Dane Cameron each have 23 points, making them third in the standings among competitors entered in the event.

 

The Patrón Endurance Cup is also tied in GT Daytona (GTD), with close battles in GT Le Mans (GTLM) and Prototype Challenge (PC).

 

Alex Job Racing’s No. 23 Team Seattle/Heart of Racing Porsche GT3 R of Mario Farnbacher and Alex Riberas is tied with Rolex 24 At Daytona GTD class winners Magnus Racing and No. 44 Audi R8 LMS drivers John Potter and Andy Lally with 21 points. Scuderia Corsa’s Christina Nielsen and her No. 63 Ferrari 488 GT3 co-drivers Alessandro Balzan and Jeff Segal share third with Paul Miller Racing’s No. 48 Audi R8 LMS GT3 drivers Bryan Sellers and Madison Snow, with 19 points each.

 

Corvette Racing won both of the Florida endurance classics with Tommy Milner and Oliver Gavin in the No. 4 Corvette C7.R, but the team has only a one-point lead over the two Porsche North America Porsche 911 RSR entries and drivers Earl Bamber and Frederic Makowiecki, who share the team’s No. 912 entry, and No. 911 co-drivers Patrick Pilet and Nick Tandy, 23-22. 

 

In PC, PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports with No. 52 ORECA FLM09 co-drivers Tom Kimber-Smith, Robert Alon and Jose Gutierrez hold a three-point lead, 28-25, over Rolex 24 winners JDC-Miller Motorsports with No. 85 ORECA co-drivers Misha Goikhberg and Stephen Simpson. Sebring class winners CORE autosport and BAR1 Motorsports are tied for third with 20 points.

 

The Patrón Endurance Cup will conclude with the Petit Le Mans on Saturday, Oct. 1. Points will be awarded at four hours, eight hours and the finish of the 10-hour event.

 

Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross (VARX) is proud to announce its partnership with the Special Operations Warrior Foundation, a top-rated nonprofit organization that provides support and assistance to the families of fallen and wounded military special operations personnel.

Special Operations Warrior Foundation (SOWF), provides post-secondary scholarship grants, educational counseling and professional tutoring services to the surviving children of Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps special operations service members who lose their lives in the line of duty. The top-rated nonprofit organization will be featured on the No. 41 Volkswagen Beetle GRC driven by 2015 Red Bull Global Rallycross series champion, Scott Speed, for two race weekends, The Base, July 2-3, and Washington, DC, on July 30.

“It’s truly an honor to welcome the Special Operations Warrior Foundation into our racing family this season,” said team owner Michael Andretti. “The Foundation provides so much to so many – we are incredibly grateful to have them as part of the program. We hope that this is a relationship that we can continue to build on and support.”

Since 1980, over 900 Special Operations service members have lost their lives in service to our country. SOWF is dedicated to providing scholarship grants, not loans, to over 1,100 children who have survived these heroes. Special Operations Warrior Foundation has 143 students enrolled in colleges and universities across the country. Last year, the Special Operations Warrior Foundation provided $7.8 million in scholarship grants, academic, financial aid and family support services to the families of fallen special operations service members.

“We are so thankful to the Andretti family and the Andretti Rallycross team for this heartwarming support to the surviving children and military families we serve,” said Steven McLeary, SOWF Executive Director. “It is our honor to partner with the Andretti team and we appreciate the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of the families who have suffered a great loss.”

The VARX team kicked off their 2016 Red Bull Global Rallycross championship season with a podium sweep during Rounds 1 and 2 in Phoenix, a third-place finish in Dallas during Round 3 of the championship and most recently, Tanner Foust and Scott Speed walked away with a 1-2 finish at Daytona International Speedway. Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross will be back in action for another doubleheader weekend at MCAS New River on July 2 and 3. Each race will air LIVE on NBC—Saturday, July 2 at 5 p.m. (ET) for Round 6, and Sunday, July 3 at 5 p.m. (ET) for Round 7.

Keep up to date on all things Andretti via Twitter with @FollowAndretti and for more information visit AndrettiAutosport.com.

Tatuus USF-17 Prototype Road Course Testing Concludes

Written by
Published in Racing News
Tuesday, 28 June 2016 14:45
The road course portion of the rigorous Tatuus USF-17 prototype development program wrapped up yesterday at Road America with accolades for the state-of-the-art next-generation chassis that will form the backbone for the first two steps on the Mazda Road to Indy ladder system – the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda and the Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires – beginning in 2017.
 
Mazda sports car talent and USF2000 steward/driving coach Joel Miller handled testing duties which also included outings at NCM Motorsports Park in Bowling Green, Ky., and Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Ala. The USF-17 utilizes the proven 2.0-liter Mazda MZR engine and Cooper racing tires.
 
“I am very privileged to have been chosen to do the R&D work on the USF-17,” said Miller. “It’s a great car. We made some setup changes early in the day and did a race simulation run and the car was within a tenth of a second on each lap for the entire run. We even did our quick time on the last lap. The car reacted very well to the changes and the teams that were here were able to see the lap times decrease which is what we wanted. The car feels much stiffer, much more connected. You can attack the corner and, while it may move around, it is very catchable rather than just sliding off. It makes its speed in the mechanical grip corners.
 
“We tried different brake pad combinations and we are braking at the same rate as the current car but braking later. The Mazda engine is performing great as are the Cooper tires. We did 50 laps this morning on the same set of tires.
 
“At Barber, we did three straight sets of mock qualifying and a race and the brake pads looked nearly brand new after 600 miles. As far as wear and tear and consumables, this car is much more cost effective. The car will stay much more competitive across a long run without degradation. And, as the fuel bleeds off, the balance changes which is something these drivers will deal with all the way up the ladder – and they’ll learn it now on the first level.”
 
The USF-17 will next head to Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis on June 30 for the oval portion of the development program with 2012 USF2000 and 2013 Pro Mazda champion Matthew Brabham behind the wheel. Brabham recently made his Verizon IndyCar Series debut in the Angie’s List Grand Prix and 100th Indianapolis 500.
 
“We took care of all the new car gremlins at the first test and since then things have been going very well,” said Scot Elkins, project manager and USF2000/Pro Mazda Race Director. “It was great to have teams and drivers at the test and to have them finally see the car in action. They have all said the same thing – they can’t believe how much of a car they are getting for the price. We have over-braked the car so the car has much bigger brakes than the current car and we have over-cooled the car – two trouble areas with the current car. We did over 1,000 miles on the same set of rotors and we only changed brake pads today. We are making an effort in reducing the operating costs to teams which is what everyone wants.”
 
With a rolling chassis priced at $51,800, the Tatuus USF-17 will serve as the base car for the PM-18 to help control operational costs. The PM-18 adds more power over the USF-17 and more sophisticated aerodynamics with a revised underbody and diffuser, a three-element rear wing and a front wing with adjustable composite wing flaps. The PM-18 also adds a higher level Cosworth data system to help train the next level of drivers and engineers in the Mazda Road to Indy. 
 
“I heard all about the testing that happened previously and now that I have seen it first hand, I am in love with this car,” said Dan Andersen, Owner and CEO of Andersen Promotions. “It has a lot of mechanical grip so it’s going to race very well – perhaps even better than the current car. Our quick time bested this past weekend’s fastest lap in Race 2, and with more setup work I have no doubt this car will be breaking our USF2000 records. The component usage is fantastic – brake wear is better by far than the current car as is the tire wear.

“The teams all love it. Some teams are thinking about adding to the orders they have already made, and we have more serious potential buyers than we have cars left in the first order of 30. I couldn’t be happier with our next generation car.”
 
To date, orders for 24 USF-17 chassis have been placed among 14 teams – nine of which are new to the series – with the first delivery of 15 cars scheduled in September. Delivery of the second batch of 15 cars is scheduled for December. An initial two-day series test is slated for October 8/9 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway as part of the annual Chris Griffis Memorial Mazda Road to Indy test with a second series open test to be scheduled in January.
 
Following two exciting races at Road America this past weekend, USF2000 will head north of the border to Toronto, Ontario, Canada for Rounds 10/11 of the championship on July 15-17.

Coming off of class victories at both the most recent IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship GT Le Mans (GTLM) class event and the 24 Hours of Le Mans, Ford Chip Ganassi Racing is looking to continue that momentum when it returns to Watkins Glen International for Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen, Round 3 of the Tequila Patrón North American Endurance Cup (FS1, live, Sunday at 10 a.m. ET).

 

Ford celebrated the 50th anniversary of its 1966 triumph at Le Mans by winning the GTE Pro class with drivers Joey Hand and Dirk Mueller, who will share the No. 66 Ford GT at The Glen. Richard Westbrook and Ryan Briscoe won the most recent GTLM race at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca – the first victory for the new Ford – and will pair at The Glen in the No. 67 Ford GT. Westbrook is riding a two-year streak at WGI, previously winning overall for Visit Florida Racing in a Corvette Daytona Prototype in 2014 and 2015.

 

Ford also has a winning legacy in the event on the 3.4-mile road circuit. A Ford GT40 won the first Six Hours of The Glen back in 1968, with Jackie Ickx and Lucien Bianchi teaming for John Wyer.

 

“We’ve got pretty good momentum,” Hand said. “We had the quickest car at [Mazda Raceway] Laguna [Seca], but we just ran short on fuel and our sister car made it. We went to Le Mans having high hopes, and we had good pace there and we did the race with no mistakes. We did what Chip always says, ‘Do the obvious things right.’

 

“We kept ourselves clean and had a huge win. For me personally, Watkins Glen is one of my favorite tracks. Now they repaved it. We tested there before we went to Le Mans, and it was super fast, super smooth and even more fun to drive. With all that stuff, I think we’ve got a pretty good recipe for a shot at another win there.”

 

Risi Competizione and Corvette Racing also will be competing at The Glen in the same cars they ran at Le Mans. Giancarlo Fisichella and Toni Vilander, second in class at Le Mans, will co-drive the No. 62 Risi Ferrari 488 GTE. Corvette Racing’s Tommy Milner and Oliver Gavin come to The Glen leading the GTLM standings by 12 points, winning at Daytona and Sebring in the No. 4 Corvette C7.R. Teammates Antonio Garcia and Jan Magnussen were second at Daytona in the No. 3 Corvette C7.R.

 

Porsche North America will field a two-car entry, the No. 911 Porsche 911 RSR for Nick Tandy and reigning WeatherTech Championship GTLM champion Patrick Pilet, and the No. 912 for Earl Bamber and Frederic Makowiecki.

 

BMW Team RLL will have the No. 25 BMW IHG Rewards Club BMW M6 GTLM for Bill Auberlen and Dirk Werner, and the No. 100 IHG Rewards Club entry for John Edwards and Lucas Luhr. The No. 25 car will have a patriotic livery to celebrate the Fourth of July, paying tribute to the stars and stripes paint scheme on the BMW M3 GTR that Auberlen, Boris Said and Hans Stuck drove to victory in the 2001 Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta.

 

Completing the GTLM entry is the No. 68 Scuderia Corsa Ferrari 488 GTE for Alessandro Pier Guidi and Daniel Serra, who finished second to Westbrook and Briscoe at Mazda Raceway in May.

The NASCAR K&N Pro Series East will make its sixth and final visit to Ohio’s Columbus Motor Speedway this weekend for the NAPA 150.

The third-mile oval, is celebrating its 71st and final season, and Saturday’s night 150-lap feature is one of the big highlights on the calendar of the track's final season. It has also been a welcome stop for Rev Racing.

The track has seen its fair share of historic moments in the K&N Pro Series East and Rev Racing has been a part of most of them. Since 2011, Rev Racing has won three of the five races. Darrell Wallace Jr. won the inaugural event for the team in 2011, Daniel Suarez scored his first series win at the track in 2013 and Sergio Pena won there in 2014.

Last year, Rev Racing entries finished 4-10-12-13 at the .333-mile semi-banked oval. In 2014 the team finished 1-5-13 and 2013 they finished 1-4-10. Only 2012 was an off year with the team posting results of 6-13-12 after Kyle Larson cut a tire with 10 laps to go and dropped from second to sixth. 

In the first seven events of the season, Rev Racing has collected six tops 10s and sits 9th, 12th, 14th and 17th in the K&N Pro Series East championship standings.

Rev Racing will be led this weekend by veteran and NASCAR Next driver Collin Cabre. The Tampa, Florida, native earned his first series win last season in the series finale at the Dover (Del.) International Speedway. Cabre will look to score his first win of the season this weekend and improve upon his 13th place finish at the track last season.

Cabre will be joined by his rookie teammates and fellow Drive For Diversity drivers, J.A. Avila, Ruben Garcia Jr. and Ali Kern, who will all be making their K&N Pro Series East debuts at Columbus this weekend. It will be a homecoming for Kern, who is from Fremont, Ohio.

NASCAR PR

Venturini Motorsports and the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards wrapped up six weekends of consecutive racing with Sunday’s visit to historic Winchester Speedway for the running of the Herr’s Potato Chip 200.

Venturini Motorsports’ customary three-team effort was led by 18-year old Dalton Sargeant who turned his best performance of the season, leading 59-laps and finishing second to race winner, Chase Briscoe.

Sargeant’s teammate Tom Hessert turned in gritty performance battling sickness and extreme temperatures, scoring a fifth place finish for his second consecutive top-5 in recent weeks.

NASCAR XFINITY (NXS) Series regular Dakoda Armstrong, subbing for Matt Tifft, rounded out VMS’s trio with a ninth place finish in his first series attempt since 2011.

The ARCA Series will enjoy the Fourth of July holiday away from the track before returning to action at Iowa Speedway in the ARCA 150 presented by Casey General Stores on July 9.

Dalton Sargeant Misses Out on First Career Series Victory Finishing Second at Winchester
Dalton Sargeant battled Chase Briscoe for top spot all afternoon in Sunday’s ARCA Herr’s Potato Chip 200 at Winchester Speedway before walking away with a hard fought and frustrating second-place finish.

Briscoe and Sargeant proved to be the class of the field as the two drivers combined to lead all 200-laps of Sunday’s race. Sargeant, who qualified second in his No.55 Toyota Racing Development – Windows 10 Camry, chased down Briscoe on lap-119, taking over the lead for 59-circuits, before relinquishing the lead on a dramatic late race restart inside the final 30-laps.

Prior to giving up the lead, Sargeant managed to out-duel Briscoe during two of the three final race restarts, but lost the battle on the third and final restart in the closing laps.

“We had a shot! Once I passed Briscoe there late in the race I was able to separate myself. It was one of those deals whoever was out front was going to win,” said Sargeant. “We pressured each other the entire race. I held him off on the first restart but that last one he got the best of me…I just got beat.”

Sunday’s runner up finish ties Sargeant’s career best (Toledo) and is his fifth top-5 in seven series attempts.

Tom Hessert Battles Fatigue Grabs Second Consecutive Top-5 Series Finish
Tom Hessert turned in a gritty performance behind the wheel of his No.25 People Against Distracted Driving backed Toyota in Sunday’s ARCA Herr’s Potato Chip 200 at Winchester Speedway.


Battling the extreme heat along with the field of competition, Hessert hung tough and raced his way to a solid fifth-place finish.

“Hard fought top-5 finish today,” said Hessert. “The 25-team did a great job giving me a strong Toyota this week. We had a really good car and made some great progress with our car and setup. We’re headed in the right direction.” This was Hessert’s second consecutive top-5 finish and fourth overall during the season campaign.

Hessert, who battled sickness prior to Sunday’s race, commented on the difficulty of racing under extreme temperature conditions inside the car.

“That was one of the more demanding days inside the car I can recall,” added Hessert. “My health wasn’t 100% this week and the hot weather really made it a challenge. I had to really stay focused and do my best to stay hydrated. Big thanks to the track’s safety crew who provided me with some much needed fluids before and after the race.”

After Winchester Hessert remains in the fourth position in the ARCA Racing driver point standings.

Dakoda Armstrong Settles for Top-10 Finish in Series Return
It wasn’t the homecoming Dakoda Armstrong envisioned, but nonetheless the Indiana native scored a ninth-place finish in his series return in Sunday’s ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards Herr’s Potato Chip 200 at Winchester Speedway.

Armstrong, a three-time ARCA Series winner, stepped in late last week to drive Venturini Motorsports’ No.15 Toyota for the injured Matt Tifft.

Qualifying in the eighth spot, Armstrong would stay inside the top-10 until cutting a right rear tire just before the midway point of the 200-lap race forcing him down pit road for an unscheduled stop. Making matters worse, the New Castle, Indiana native was accessed a speeding penalty exiting the pits. The tire issue and penalty resulted in the loss of five-laps.

“Well, not the day we wanted,” said Armstrong. “We had a right rear tire go down early which took us out of competition pretty much ending our day. I still had a lot of fun coming back and racing in the series. Thanks to everyone at Venturini for the ride.”

Despite the issues, Armstrong was able to drive his car to his 21st ARCA career top-10 finish. He’ll return to the NASCAR XFINITY Series this week at Daytona International Speedway.

VMS PR

Aaron Telitz, from Birchwood, Wis., bounced back into contention for the Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires – and the chase for a Mazda Scholarship to graduate to Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires, the next level of the Mazda Road to Indy, in 2017 – following an impressive double victory today for Team Pelfrey at Road America. Telitz started on the pole for both races and his superiority was never really challenged.
 
Argentinean rookie Nicolas Dapero (Juncos Racing) and Frenchman Nico Jamin (Cape Motorsports with Wayne Taylor Racing) shared the runner-up finishes, while Colorado’s Will Owen claimed a pair of third-place results for Juncos Racing.
 
Telitz lost no time in making his presence felt this morning. Cheered on by an enthusiastic gathering of relatives and friends, the Wisconsin native took off confidently into the lead from the pole and quickly stretched out an advantage of more than three seconds over outside front row qualifier Jake Parsons (Juncos Racing). Parsons, though, was hindered by a broken rear wing, courtesy of a first-corner incident when 2015 Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda winner Nico Jamin misjudged his overtaking maneuver and clipped the rear end of Parsons’s car.
 
Parsons gamely held onto second place for the opening four laps with his ill-handling car but was unable to avoid falling to sixth at the finish.
 
Juncos Racing teammate Dapero took up the running after overtaking series points leader Pato O’Ward (Team Pelfrey) with a bold outside line maneuver at Turn One on Lap Four. But by then he was already four seconds adrift. Dapero gradually whittled away at the deficit to Telitz before running wide onto the grass at the exit of Turn Six. Undaunted, Dapero continued to post a series of fast laps to secure his second successive podium finish.
 
Owen earned himself the Quarter Master Hard Charger Award by rising from sixth on the grid to third following a bold pass on O’Ward in Turn One with four laps remaining. California’s TJ Fischer claimed the Staubli Award after finishing sixth on his Pro Mazda debut in a third Team Pelfrey entry.
 
Race two this afternoon followed a similar script as Telitz extended Team Pelfrey’s remarkable unbeaten streak this season. His eventual winning margin was 10.2885 seconds over Jamin, who bounced back from his earlier disappointment by sneaking past Parsons at Turn Five on the opening lap to claim second. Owen secured another Quarter Master Hard Charger Award by once again passing O’Ward in the late stages to complete his rise from sixth on the grid to third.
 
Team Pelfrey also took home the PFC Award from both races, while Bobby Eberle (JDC MotorSports) secured a pair of National Class victories. The Texan was fortunate in the first race, profiting when Bob Kaminsky spun away his hard-won advantage with just three laps remaining, but drove well in the afternoon to edge teammate Kevin Davis by less than two tenths of a second following a race-long battle.
 
Telitz’s performance has reduced teammate O’Ward’s championship lead to 28 points, 259-231, as the Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires heads to its second and final oval track race of the season at Iowa Speedway, once again in conjunction with the Verizon IndyCar Series, on July 10.
 
Aaron Telitz (Rice Lake Weighing Systems-Team Pelfrey): “It’s hard to explain how happy I am! Obviously, winning in Wisconsin – my home state – with all my friends, family and supporters here was incredible. I love having people here, it really fuels me, rather than adding pressure. I had an awesome car all day. To sweep both races, getting both poles and two wins, there’s not much more I could ask for.”
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