ALLGAIER SCORES FIRST CAREER VICTORY IN ARCA AT HOME TRACK ARCA RE/MAX Rookie Justin Allgaier Victorious on the Dirt Track at the Illinois State Fairground in Springfield, Illinois Springfield, IL (August 20, 2006) - Justin Allgaier shed ...
ALLGAIER SCORES FIRST CAREER VICTORY IN ARCA AT HOME TRACK
ARCA RE/MAX Rookie Justin Allgaier Victorious on the Dirt Track at the Illinois State Fairground in Springfield, Illinois
Springfield, IL (August 20, 2006) - Justin Allgaier shed the monkey on his back Sunday as the ARCA RE/MAX Series Rookie scores his first career victory in the running of the Allen Crowe 100 in his hometown of Springfield, Illinois. Allgaier has struggled with bad luck the past few races. In Friday nights Michigan ARCA RE/MAX event, Allgaier started in the 17th position and was headed to the front when just 20 laps in the event, a blown engine ended his day. He headed home to Springfield and the Illinois State Fairground where he qualified fourth for Saturday nights USAC Silver Crown race but was unable to start the race because of an engine failure. Today he placed the No. 16 Hoosier-Trashman-Schluckebier Farms Pontiac in the third place starting position on the grid for the 100 lap ARCA RE/MAX race on the mile dirt track. Last year, Allgaier captured the pole after crushing the ten-year-old track record in qualifying.
From the start of the race, Allgaier radioed the crew that the motor wasn't running right and was stumbling on the straights. Crew chief Larry Moore brought the No. 16 Pontiac down pit road five times to make adjustments restarting 40th after one stop. Moore told the rookie to get what he could with the engine and the handling being what it was but Allgaier was determined to make his way to the front. He made his way through the field on the bottom of the race track picking off positions one by one. With ten laps to go, Allgaier made his way to the fifth position when AJ Fike ran out of fuel and he managed his way around the three cars in front of him including seven-time champion, Frank Kimmel to be on the tail of veteran and race dominator Bob Strait. A caution with four laps to go in the race set Allgaier up to be right behind Strait on the restart. Allgaier was strong in the corners despite the motor stumbling. Going into turn one on the white flag lap, Strait hugged the bottom trying to protect his position but Allgaier nudged him and the two cars drove down the straight-a-way side by side. Allgaier knew that he couldn't lift in the corner and drove in hard out braking his competitor who slid up the track after Allgaier made the pass in turns three and four on his way to take his first checkered flag in the ARCA RE/MAX Series. Allgaier immediately asked for the Illinois State Fairground checkered flag and honored his fellow Springfield friends and family with a Polish victory lap around the one-mile dirt track.
"I can't tell you just how much this means to me to win at home," Justin Allgaier said. "Having all my friends and family here means so much. I am so proud of this team led by Larry Moore (crew chief). The car was just not handling the way we needed it to and those guys did everything they could on pit road to adjust the car. Larry told me to get what I could but I knew I was good in the corners and could pass on the inside there. With ten to go, I found myself right up there with the leaders and lucked out when AJ (Fike), who I really thought would win, ran out of gas. I was able to get off the corners and passed the other cars in front of me. When the caution came out, I was right behind the leader; it was all or nothing. I believed I could pass him if I could get underneath him, so I dove down hard into turn one on the white flag lap. We went down the straight side by side and I knew I couldn't lift going into (turn) three which gave me the advantage and the lead. I liked this track after winning the pole here and breaking the record last year, but bringing our first ARCA RE/MAX win home is something I will never forget. I really have to thank my family and everyone on this team for sticking by me after such bad luck we've been having this season. I couldn't have done it without them."