Kimmel wins ADG 100 at Lowe's CONCORD NC (5-23-03) -- by Don Radebaugh -- Among a spattering of Winston Cup teams, ARCA RE/MAX Series regulars and newcomers, ARCA veteran Frank Kimmel surged to the forefront Friday at Lowe's Motor Speedway with...
Kimmel wins ADG 100 at Lowe's
CONCORD NC (5-23-03) -- by Don Radebaugh -- Among a spattering of Winston Cup teams, ARCA RE/MAX Series regulars and newcomers, ARCA veteran Frank Kimmel surged to the forefront Friday at Lowe's Motor Speedway with a convincing victory in the ADG 100 presented by EasyCare.
Kimmel, in the Advance Auto Parts-Pork Ford, made a bold three-wide pass for the lead on the final restart with seven laps remaining to score his 45th career RE/MAX Series triumph in his 243rd start.
Kimmel, who was lined up third behind race leader Clay Rogers and Jeff Fultz, took the low road inside of Rogers while Fultz went high making it three-wide headed into turn one. When the leaders shot off turn two, Kimmel was door-to-door with Fultz for the lead with Rogers directly behind. By the time the leaders raced off turn four, Kimmel had the lead, one he would not relinquish.
"It's been a great year so far," said Kimmel. "We changed the car drastically from what we have run here in the past. We had an untried set-up other than the shocks; the car was tight but it worked good enough to make the car stick in those last few laps."
While Fultz did all he could to fend off Rogers in the final laps, Kimmel steadily pulled away from the pack and crossed under the checkered flag five lengths in front of Fultz who finished second after starting 34th in the C&C Boiler Ford. Rogers, in his first RE/MAX Series start, ran out of gas on the final lap, and with 23 cars still on the lead lap, fell from third to 22nd in the final running order.
With a 200-lap race at Berlin Raceway 800 miles away in Marne, Michigan scheduled to roll off the very next day, Kimmel spent little time celebrating. "We'll all meet at the shop (New Albany, Indiana) sometime tonight/early morning and change out the cars. Everyone will get about two or three hours of sleep and then take off. It's an 18 hour trip and we have 16 hours to do it."
Nineteen-year-old Jeremy Clements, in only his fifth RE/MAX Series start, finished a career-best third in Ken Appling's Broadway Motor Company Chevrolet after starting 33rd. "I'm just thrilled," said Clements. "The track was in great shape after they dried it out. I didn't think they cared enough about us ARCA guys to even worry about us because the NASCAR schedule had been pushed back so much. I'm glad they made the effort."
Winston Cup regular Casey Mears charged from the 31st position to finish fourth in Chip Ganassi's Target Dodge with series regular AJ Henriksen, who started 32nd, finishing a solid fifth in his father Arne Henriksen's Fastenal-Engineered Components Ford.
The 100-mile, 67-lap race was supposed to have been run Thursday night after Winston Cup Bud Pole Qualifying but more than two days of continual rain delayed the start-time until Friday morning just after 11 am. With qualifying also rained out two days prior, the race was lined up by current car owner points putting series point leader Kimmel on the Old Milwaukee Pole. Kimmel led at the onset while Kyle Busch, who started 29th in a Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet, charged through the field in no time. With 15 laps completed, Busch was bumper-to-bumper with Kimmel for lead. However, Busch forfeited his second place position in favor of pit road service under caution, one of five throughout the race. Kimmel, who never pitted, retained the lead with Rogers in close pursuit. Back under green, Rogers took the lead away from Kimmel on lap 38 and held out until the 60th circuit before Kimmel took it back on the final restart.
Jason Jarrett, with a new nine-race sponsorship program from Gladiator GarageWorks, finished sixth in front of Mark Gibson who steered the Williams Brothers Lumber Chevrolet home in seventh. Andy Belmont finished eighth in the Verizon Ford with newcomer Jimmy Henderson in ninth posting his career-best finish in his third start. Brent Sherman, with Serta Mattress sponsorship on the quarter panels and a United States Air Force logo on the hood, finished tenth. Busch recovered from a frontstretch spin coming off turn four as well as a couple of trips down pit road to finish 11th.