Kentucky II: Eddie Sharp Racing preview

Speed, Butler, and Lofton Happy to Return to Kentucky Speedway for Round Two DENVER, N.C. (July 15, 2008) -- Eddie Sharp Racing returns to Kentucky Speedway this weekend for the Kentucky ARCA RE/MAX 150. This is the first 'repeat' track on the...

Speed, Butler, and Lofton Happy to Return to Kentucky Speedway for Round Two

DENVER, N.C. (July 15, 2008) -- Eddie Sharp Racing returns to Kentucky Speedway this weekend for the Kentucky ARCA RE/MAX 150. This is the first 'repeat' track on the 2008 ARCA RE/MAX Series schedule. Since the ESR teams were last at the 1.5-mile tri-oval, teammates Scott Speed, Justin Lofton, and Ken Butler, III have posted a combined total of one win, three pole positions, seven Top 5 starts, and six Top 10 finishes in only four events. With increasing momentum, the Eddie Sharp Racing teams enter the second half of the 2008 season with high expectations.

Kentucky Speedway is the scene of one of the most dramatic finishes of the 2008 ARCA RE/MAX season. Speed dominated the event, leading more laps than any other driver and earning him the Aaron's Lap Leader award for the caution-extended 168-mile Drive Smart! Buckle Up Kentucky 150. With restarts plagued caution after caution, missing a gear and running on fumes, the No. 2 Red Bull Toyota was passed by Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. in the second late-race restart. Unable to get past Stenhouse in the final one-lap dash, Speed finished the night in the second position.

Lofton also had a memorable debut at the speedway. In the opening laps of the May race, Lofton was climbing into the Top 10 when his seat belts came undone. A green flag pit stop to fix the situation proved costly and the team was never able to make up the lost laps, finishing in the 23rd position.

Butler had a very good spring visit to the 1.5-mile speedway. KBIII was awarded the Casite Hard Charger award in the Drive Smart! Buckle Up Kentucky 150 for climbing 16 spots from his 20th-place starting position. Butler, III stayed out of trouble and charged the No. 22 Aaron's Lucky Dog Dream Machine to the checkered flag in the fourth position.

Returning to speedway action, Speed and Butler are tied for second in the Superspeedway Challenge with 785 points each, 85 points behind leader Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. Speed also trails Stenhouse by only 130 points for the ARCA RE/MAX Series Championship title.

Scott Speed (No. 2 Red Bull Toyota):

"We have had a strong speedway program this year. With the win at Kansas, near-wins at Kentucky and Pocono and the pole positions at Pocono and MIS, the results speak for themselves. It will be highly disappointing if we don't start and finish in the Top 5, at the very least."

Justin Lofton (No. 20 Lofton Cattle Dodge):

"We definitely have momentum on our side right now and I plan to make the absolute most of it. With the win at MIS and the pole at Cayuga, I think we have every opportunity to qualify very well this Friday and pick up our second win. Hopefully the monkey that was on our back for the first half of the season is long gone and we'll finish this year up with a lot of successes. Wayne Carroll and the Lofton Cattle team have been working hard and I have confidence that we will run up front every weekend."

Ken Butler, III (No. 22 Aaron's Lucky Dog Dream Machine Toyota):

"This is the second race with my new Crew Chief, Jonathan Davis and the crew. The first race together [Cayuga] we had a really strong car and we were running Top 5 when we got caught in a little short track racing incident. I think we have a fantastic chance of a strong finish at Kentucky. We finished Top 5 in May and I expect us to be contenders for the win this weekend. Jonathan and my guys have been working hard to put together a fast car and I really appreciate all their effort."

-credit: esr

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About this article
Series ARCA
Drivers Scott Speed , Justin Lofton , Ken Butler