Salem II: Tom Hessert race report

Hessert Stays Focused FOR Top-10 Finish Salem, IN (09/20/09) -- ARCA RE/MAX Series and RAB Racing driver Tom Hessert notched another top-ten finish weekend with an 8th place finish in the Kentuckiana Ford Dealers ARCA Fall Classic 200 at Salem...

Hessert Stays Focused FOR Top-10 Finish

Salem, IN (09/20/09) -- ARCA RE/MAX Series and RAB Racing driver Tom Hessert notched another top-ten finish weekend with an 8th place finish in the Kentuckiana Ford Dealers ARCA Fall Classic 200 at Salem Speedway. The result also marked the first race for Hessert working with veteran crew chief Wayne Carroll who recently joined the No. 20 Cherry Hill Classic Cars team.

Hessert, Carroll and the Cherry Hill Classic Cars team arrived at Salem Speedway early Saturday morning to prepare for the one-day companion event with the ARCA Lincoln Welders Truck Series. With one practice, Hessert was scored 16th fastest before entering the late afternoon qualifying session. In qualifying, Hessert posted a lap of 109.414 m.p.h. (18.261 seconds) putting himself in position for the 19th starting spot.

As the green flag dropped for the start of the 200 lap event, 23-year-old Hessert slowly worked his way thru traffic toward the front of the field. Continuing to make adjustments and work on the No. 20 Cherry Hill Classic Cars Ford, Hessert and Carroll began making changes to help with handling. After several stretches of green flag racing Hessert brought the No. 20 Cherry Hill Classic Cars Ford to the checkered flag inside the top-10 with an eighth place finish. The finish marked the fifth top-10 finish for the New Jersey native since joining RAB Racing in July.

"We struggled all through practice," Hessert said after the race. "The car was loosen exit all day. We made changes and it was a lot better for qualifying but we didn't know exactly what we had. Once the race started we slowly picked off a few cars. We've been having a lot of uncommon green flag runs lately during the races, but we stayed out of trouble, minded our own business and came home with a decent finish."

Hessert moved from tenth to ninth in driver points after the Salem Speedway event. Hessert sits 85 markers out of eighth with 3685 points as the ARCA RE/MAX Series heads into the final two races of the season.

The ARCA RE/MAX Series tour will resume next month on Thursday night, October 1st, in the Kansas Lottery $150 Grand at Kansas Speedway. Hessert and RAB Racing will use the time off to prepare for the final race of the year by testing at Rockingham Speedway later this week.

"I've only competed at Kansas once before in the spring of 2008," Hessert said. "It's been a while since I've been there, but we had a good run and finished 13th. Kansas is a real fast track, similar to Chicago. We're taking the same car we had in Chicago so I expect to be pretty good there."

-credit: rabr

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Series ARCA
Drivers Tom Hessert