Salem pre-event notes

ARCA RE/MAX Series Proud Salem Tradition Since 1955; 85th Running Coming Veterans Schrader, Kimmel Go Up Against Onslaught of Rookies SALEM IN (3-18-09) - With Daytona in the books, the ARCA RE/MAX Series is again gearing up to go. Next stop -...

ARCA RE/MAX Series Proud Salem Tradition Since 1955; 85th Running Coming Veterans Schrader, Kimmel Go Up Against Onslaught of Rookies

SALEM IN (3-18-09) - With Daytona in the books, the ARCA RE/MAX Series is again gearing up to go. Next stop - Salem Speedway for the 85th running of the Kentuckiana Ford Dealers 200 presented by Federated Car Care Sunday afternoon, April 5.

The annual event is spread out over the weekend with practice and Menards Pole Award Qualifying scheduled for Saturday afternoon. The race is slated to go at 2:15 pm local time Sunday afternoon.

Entrants already include NASCAR Sprint Cup Series veteran Ken Schrader, nine-time ARCA RE/MAX Series champion Frank Kimmel and a host of powerful rookies hoping to make their own mark on the historic half-mile, high-banked oval.

Although Schrader has 15 career ARCA RE/MAX Series victories over the years, only one of his wins came at Salem, and that was 10 years ago.

"Anyone who thinks they can just drop in on an ARCA race and clean up, had better re-think that one," said Schrader. "It's flat tough to win over there, especially at Salem.

"There was a time when you could pick your way through an ARCA field, but not anymore. It's hard enough to stay on the lead lap at Salem, let alone win there. But we'll give it our best. We love the track, and we love the series. The competition is more intense than many people realize."

Kimmel, who hails from nearby Clarksville, Indiana, is the all-time winner at Salem with nine victories. The all-time Salem lap leader also snapped a four-year winless streak at his hometown track with a victory in the ARCA Fall Classic at Salem in 2008. Kimmel will also come with his new title sponsor - Ansell-Menards.

Eddie Sharp Racing, which most recently fielded cars for Scott Speed in ARCA RE/MAX Series competition, has filed four entries for Salem, three of which include rookie drivers. Those rookies are New York, New York's Tim George, Jr., Fort Frances, Ontario's Steve Arpin and Greenville, North Carolina's Craig Goess. ESR has also entered Justin Lofton, last year's winner at Michigan Int'l Speedway.

Other rookies entered include Miami Springs, Florida's Joey Coulter and Humble, Texas's Stephan McCurley.

Other veterans entered include local favorite Darrell Basham, Owensboro, Kentucky's Brett Hudson, Indiantown, Florida's Patrick Sheltra, Dallas, Texas's Ken Weaver and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania's Norm Benning.

Outside of some occasional downtime when the track changed ownership, the series has been a staple at Salem since 1955. In fact, no track has appeared more on the ARCA RE/MAX Series schedule over the years than Salem.

Past RE/MAX Series winners at Salem include NASCAR Cup champion Bobby Allison, six-time ARCA national champ Iggy Katona, three-time series champs Jack Bowsher and Tim Steele, '52 Indy 500 winner Troy Ruttman and USAC stock car veteran/champion Don White. 27 RE/MAX Series races have been won from the pole at Salem.

Camping, on a first-come, first-serve basis, is free. For ticket information, call toll free 1-888-2-GO-RACE or 1 (888) 246-7223.

-credit: arca

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Series ARCA
Drivers Ken Schrader , Frank Kimmel , Darrell Basham , Tim Steele , Scott Speed , Norm Benning , Ken Weaver , Justin Lofton , Patrick Sheltra , Steve Arpin , Craig Goess , Joey Coulter , Stephan McCurley , Brett Hudson