Great Railing 150 runs on Sunday June 1
Frank Kimmel has never won on a road course in the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards, but that doesn't mean he hasn't had fun trying.
"I love going to the road courses," he said. "I'm not real good at it, but I like it. It's fun. It's different from what we are used to doing."
Kimmel will race at the spacious New Jersey Motorsports Park for the seventh time in his career when he brings the No. 44 Ansell-Menards Toyota to the east coast for the Great Railing 150 presented by Barbera's Autoland. He finished fifth, gaining four positions from where he started, last season at the track.
"New Jersey is a cool place to go," he said. "I've gotten used to which turn is coming up next and I feel more confident there than I do at any road course the series has ever been too."
Despite nary a win on a road course, Kimmel's ARCA road course stats are impressive with 11 top-10 finishes in 12 road course starts...including a career-best second on the streets of Des Moines, Iowa in 1994 and a third at Watkins Glen in 2001. In six previous starts at New Jersey, his best finishes, among all top-10s, are fourth in 2010 and fifth in 2013
Kimmel made one other career road course start in 2006 at Daytona Int'l Speedway in the IROC division, finishing eighth among some of the best NASCAR and open-wheel talent in the world.
New Jersey Motorsports Park is the only road course on the 2014 series schedule. It's also the first leg of the Bill France Four Crown series, a series-within-a-series that rewards drivers for success on a diverse slate of tracks, to include a superspeedway, a paved short-track, a dirt track, and a road course. Kimmel has seven Bill France Four Crown titles in his career.
Kimmel is the all-time leader in ARCA Racing Series history in wins (80) and championships (10). He's led more than 11,000 laps in his career - but only one lap so far this season. He stands third in the ARCA Racing Series championship point standings - 165 points behind leader Grant Enfinger - as he chases his 11th series title.
Last week, Kimmel's string of 36 straight top-10 finishes came to an end at Toledo Speedway. He now hopes to bounce back and inch closer to the ARCA championship point lead.
The car he will be driving was the one SCOTT Rookie Challenge runner-up Mason Mingus drove to top-10 finishes last year.
"I'm sure (team owner) Nate (Thiesse) and (crew chief) Jamie Jones will have the car as good as we can get it," he said of his Win-Tron Racing team. "This is a specific road course car. We didn't test in it, but they asked some questions about what I liked in the car. We'll be ready to go. I need all of the help I can get on the road courses."
The Great Railing 150 will have practice sessions from 11:35 a.m. to 12:35 p.m. and 1:25 p.m. to 2:55 p.m. on Saturday, May 31. Menards Pole Qualifying presented by Ansell will be at 4:30 on Saturday and in a group qualifying format. Race day is Sunday, June 1. A driver autograph session is from 12:30 to 1:15 p.m. with the field rolling just after 1:30 p.m.