Tag Archives: Bobby Gerhart

NASCAR Racing Begins with ARCA Racing in More Ways Than One

The seemingly long off season for Stock Car racing is almost over. The season actually begins with the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards opening at Daytona International Speedway. The  Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series with open with their exhibition race The Clash at Daytona several hours later. But in some ways NASCAR Cup racing begins with ARCA racing.

In years past many future Monster Energy NASCAR Cup stars got their start in the ARCA Racing Series. Ryan Newman won this race in 2001, Kyle Busch in 2004 and James Buescher in 2009 but many others got important experience by racing this race and in this series.

In 2014, Cup driver Chase Elliott started fifth and finished ninth in this race. Daniel Suarez was also in this race started third and finished fifth. Suarez was also in the race in 2015 starting sixth and finishing second.

Last year we had some future NASCAR stars in this race; NASCAR Xfinity Series drivers Cole Custer (10th) and William Byron (2nd), also NASCAR Camping World Truck driver Chase Briscoe (4th). Camping World Truck driver Grant Enfinger won this race in 2014 and 2015.

This year we have Xfinity Driver Matt Tifft in this race.  20 year old Tifft was a NASCAR Next driver in 2016.  17 year old Riley Herbst driving full time in the ARCA series for Joe Gibbs Racing will also be a rising star to watch.

John Wes Townley won this race last year and retired from all racing at the end of the season.

As always though these big money NASCAR teams will have to contend with the ARCA regulars like eight time winner of this race Bobby Gerhart in his legendary No. 5 Lucas Oil Machine.

If you cannot get to Daytona International Speedway for the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards; Lucas Oil Complete Engine Treatment 200 Driven by General Tire it will be shown on Fox Sports 1 on February 18th at 4 PM ET.

Feature Photo Credit ARCA Racing

Brian Berg Jr. is a NASCAR writer for BehindPitRow.com.

Follow him on Twitter @brian_jr1 during the race and throughout the week for more NASCAR news and commentary.

NASCAR Season Begins with ARCA Racing at Daytona

The 2014 NASCAR Season begins with the ARCA Racing Series race at Daytona International Speedway. Well maybe it is a stretch saying the NASCAR season begins with an ARCA race; especially since NASCAR teams will have already been on the track for practice, but it can be said that NASCAR seasons of the future begin with that same race.

Each and every year the ARCA Racing Series race at Daytona has young new drivers entered in it who are on their way to each of NASCAR’s top series.

Ryan Newman won this race in 2001 on his fast track to the Sprint Cup Series, running an ARCA, Busch and Cup Schedule that year. Kyle Busch won in 2004 in preparation for his move to the Sprint Cup Series.

Last year John Wes Townley won this race while trying to find his way into NASCAR. Kyle Larson who will run his first NASCAR Sprint Cup season in the No. 42 Target Chevy for Ganassi Racing finished second. Darrell Wallace, Jr. (Bubba) was also in this race last year but had a crash early. These are just a sampling of future NASCAR stars that were in the race last year.

Even though many up and coming NASCAR stars are racing in this event they still have to contend with the regular ARCA Racing Series drivers. Each and every year they have to contend with Bobby Gerhart. Gerhart has won a record eight Daytona races including three in a row in 2005-2007 and 2010-2012.

Record Ten time ARCA Series Champion Frank Kimmel will try yet again to win his first Daytona race after being shut out each and every year. If he could win it would be every bit as emotional as when Dale Earnhardt won his Daytona 500.

This year future NASCAR stars Jeb Burton, Chase Elliott, and Dylan Kwasniewski will battle the ARCA veterans. They are trying to get valuable experience prior to starting their new rides this season in the Nationwide Series and Camping World Truck Series. John Wes Townley will also be back to defend his win from last year.

The Lucas Oil 200 presented by MAVTV American Real at Daytona International Speedway is Saturday, February 15th. If you can’t get to Daytona International Speedway, the race will be shown live on Fox Sports 1 beginning at 4 PM ET.

Brian Berg Jr. is a NASCAR writer for BehindPitRow.com.

Follow him on Twitter @brian_jr1 during the race and throughout the week for more NASCAR news and commentary, or on Facebook, Pinterest, and Google.