Salem: Patrick Sheltra preview

Patrick Sheltra Says "Salem Here I Come" "Mr. Showtime Looking For Show Of His Own Sunday" SALEM, Indiana (April 9, 2008) - - The wait is over. Sophomore ARCA RE/MAX Series (ARS) driver Patrick Sheltra is ready to dust off his uniform and...

Patrick Sheltra Says "Salem Here I Come"
"Mr. Showtime Looking For Show Of His Own Sunday"

SALEM, Indiana (April 9, 2008) - - The wait is over. Sophomore ARCA RE/MAX Series (ARS) driver Patrick Sheltra is ready to dust off his uniform and relace his shoes as the ARS resumes action after a two month hiatus this Sunday for the Kentuckiana Ford Dealers 200 by Federated Auto Parts at Salem Speedway.

[IMAGE]After a solid 15th place finish at the season-opener at Daytona International Speedway, Sheltra is itching to keep his string of positive runs going and hopes that his third start at Salem Speedway will award his sixth top-10 finish of his career on April 13.

"Two months has seemed like a year," said Sheltra. "It's been a while since we've raced an ARCA race but the complaining is over and Salem is here. I'm ready to go!"

Last season, Sheltra, nicknamed "Mr. Showtime" for his unique driving style answered his inaugural debut at the tricky half-mile oval with a solid 11th place finish. The fall event brought a similar run in the No. 60 Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS after the Indiantown, Florida native collected a 14th place finish after starting 21st.

The 21-year old driver is quick to point out that experience is everything at a track like Salem Speedway and he's banking that his two previous starts at the historical short track will pay off on Sunday.

"Can't describe Salem Speedway any other way than just hang on," Sheltra sounded. "It's a mean place but tends to put on a great race for the fans. It's old and beat up, but some drivers like those characteristics. I do. We've had some moderate success there, but we've raised the bar this year and we're looking for more top-10s and more importantly wins! Hopefully we'll get either our first top-10 or win on Sunday."

Sheltra Motorsports based in Whitesville, Kentucky just two hours from Salem Speedway had the opportunity to test at the facility on Sunday, April 6. The team is hoping what they learned will transfer over to this weekend's activities.

"The test was very solid," Sheltra added. "We spent a lot of times focusing on different agendas. We need to qualify better at Salem. If you are going to try and finish in the top-10, you have to start near the front. I think what we learned will pay off on both Saturday (qualifying) and Sunday."

Crew Chief John Hayden has opted to bring a different Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS to the first of two events this season at Salem Speedway. The primary machine will be the same Chevrolet that Sheltra maneuvered at Nashville Superspeedway, Kansas Speedway, Pocono Raceway (June) and Kentucky Speedway in 2007.

The automobile has proven to be a strong car in the team's fleet and bringing it to Salem Speedway the Sheltra Motorsports team is hoping for the same type of results.

"Our speedway program will be Dodges this year, so we're transformed this car into a short track car," Sheltra explained. "It's a car that responded well to changes and as a team we feel it can give us an advantage at Salem. I think we'll hit the jackpot."

Following ARCA SIM Factory pole qualifying Saturday afternoon, Sheltra will head to Vernon, Indiana for a night of dirt track racing at Twin Cities Raceway behind the wheel of his No. 23 Chevrolet Monte Carlo.

-credit: PatrickSheltra.com.

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Series ARCA