Rockingham: Matt Merrell previews

Matt Merrell Looking To Give Win-Tron Racing More At Rockingham Speedway ROCKINGHAM, North Carolina (April 15, 2009) - - After notching his career best ARCA RE/MAX Series (ARS) finish at Salem Speedway two weeks ago, Win-Tron Racing development...

Matt Merrell Looking To Give Win-Tron Racing More At Rockingham Speedway

ROCKINGHAM, North Carolina (April 15, 2009) - - After notching his career best ARCA RE/MAX Series (ARS) finish at Salem Speedway two weeks ago, Win-Tron Racing development driver Matt Merrell is seeking his first career top-10 run in Sunday's ARCA RE/MAX Carolina 200 at Rockingham Speedway.

It's been a pretty impressive two races for Lakeville Minnesota's Win-Tron Racing in 2009. After producing a dramatic win in the season opener at Daytona International Speedway in February with James Buescher, the team showed they lost zero steam at Salem Speedway where Merrell ran a competitive weekend in the No. 32 Dodge Charger before finishing 11th.

This weekend, the organization returns to Rockingham Speedway with the duo effort of the driver and team are in pursuit of their second top-10 finish of the year. For Merrell, the Portland, Texas native will make his inaugural debut at the track nicknamed "The Rock."

In order to gain additional security for its rising star, Win-Tron Racing under the leadership of former ASA champion Kevin Cywinski and crew chief Mike Chafee tested at the legendary race track in March giving Merrell some much need laps around one of the most trickiest circuits on the schedule.

"The test was real productive," recalled Merrell, who spent the 2008 season competing full-time in the USARacing Series for Win-Tron Racing. "I've been to Rockingham before in a USAR car but its a little different boat with an ARCA car. I was pretty happy with the car following the test. We made some tweaks back at the shop, so hopefully we made the right changes and we'll be back near the front this weekend."

While Merrell knows that a test is completely different to a race which will be filled with 41 of ARCA's best, the rookie prot0x00e9g0x00e9 is hoping to lean on his race experience in the USARacing as an asset Sunday afternoon. "Tires like always are a big issue at Rockingham. It was no different in the USAR race last year. One of my biggest challenges that I had to overcome last year was tire management. With that experience hand-in-hand, I believe our approach this weekend will be a favorable one."

For the second straight weekend, the Win-Tron Racing team is utilizing the third race of the season to bring awareness to an even bigger picture off the race track.

The team will continue to recognize and help bring further attentiveness to Colin's Hope.

Colin's Hope is a nonprofit organization that creates and supports programs that aid in preventing children from drowning. Despite numerous sources for water safety, the number of children who drown per year is staggering. Colin's Hope of saving children from drowning is being achieved through improved water safety awareness and standards throughout communities.

"A lot of people asked about Colin's Hope at Salem and that was our primary goal, added Merrell. It's such a worthy project. I'm looking to extend the awareness by ten fold this weekend at Rockingham. It's an honor for me to be associated with such a strong and meaningful organization."

Win-Tron Racing co-owner and team manager Nate Thiesse offered his two-cents on this weekend's activities. "Matt did a fine job for us at Salem. We're going to Rockingham this weekend with him this weekend and looking for another solid outing. Matt is not necessarily a foreigner to Rockingham but it will be a new reality for him in an ARCA car. Kevin and Mike have worked hard with him for this weekend, so I really think he'll impress a lot of people. So far, we're very happy with the way our season has progressed; we hope to continue that trend on Sunday."

Entering Rockingham, Win-Tron Racing is tied for third in the ARCA RE/MAX Series owner's standings after two races. Five credits separate car owner Kevin Cywinski from the second position held by Mark Gibson (No. 77). The team slipped two spots from their last outing at Salem Speedway after Merrell finished 11th.

-credit: wtr

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About this article
Series ARCA
Drivers Mark Gibson , James Buescher , Matt Merrell