Originally-From: ARCA <email@example.com> Michigan Favorite Chad Finley ARCA RE/MAX Series Bound for Berlin Short-Track; 17-Year-Old is Two-for-Two in Top-10 Finishes in 2009 MARNE MI (7-16-09) - From 18-year-old point leader ...
Originally-From: ARCA <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Michigan Favorite Chad Finley ARCA RE/MAX Series Bound for Berlin Short-Track; 17-Year-Old is Two-for-Two in Top-10 Finishes in 2009
MARNE MI (7-16-09) - From 18-year-old point leader Parker Kligerman to 16-year-old James Buescher; from 19-year-old Joey Coulter to 17-year-old Chad Finley, the young talent currently making headlines on the ARCA RE/MAX Series tour is unprecedented in series history.
And that's good news for Finley who's helping contribute to the young news makers in 2009 in the no. 29 Brad Keselowski Racing (BKR)-prepared Chevrolet.
Finley, the son of ARCA RE/MAX Series veteran/winner Jeff Finley, has earned two top-10 finishes in his only two starts on tour - a solid sixth in his debut at Toledo Speedway back in May and a ninth place run last week at Iowa Speedway.
Next stop - Berlin Raceway for the Wolverine Power Systems 200 presented by Generac Saturday, July 25. And for once, the Lansing, Michigan local favorite finally gets to race at a track that's familiar to him.
"We've been there (at Berlin) six or seven times," said Finley. "We ran an ASA (late model) car there as well. We were running in the top-five in the ASA race before our tire went flat. We've also run our Outlaw (late model) car there, but the people who run there have been there forever so it's been very tough. We've had a couple top-10s."
But it also must have been tough last week at Iowa, a track that Finley had never seen before until he got there race weekend.
"Iowa was a huge learning curve for me. Wayne (Setterington/crew chief) and all the guys at BKR brought a really good car. When we got to the track we were struggling with the car being too tight in the center of the corner and we really didn't get it cured till the end of the day; all the guys busted their backs to get the car where it needed to be. I really want to thank all of them for their hard work.
"We also drew a number one pill for qualifying and that made things really difficult. It was my first time qualifying. We managed to qualify 15th with a really loose race car. During the race we started off way too loose and quickly fell back. But Wayne just kept telling me to keep digging and that he would get it fixed up for me. We finally got the car tightened up at about lap 90 and started to pick are way back to the front; we just lost too much time in the beginning to ever make up. We also had a miscue on pit road and lost six spots. It's tough to look out your window (on pit road) and watch cars drive by when you can't do anything about it. But these things happen; it's no one's fault. We're ready for Berlin."
The event at Berlin marks Finley's first ARCA RE/MAX Series start in his home state of Michigan and he's had this race circled on his calendar ever since the deal was struck with BKR to race the #29 Auto Value / Bumper to Bumper Parts Stores and Certified Service Centers Chevrolet.
"It's (Berlin) definitely a driver's track. Gotta be easy on and off the gas pedal and ready with the brake pedal when you need it. It's a small track, but it's a tough track. I mean, Kyle Busch came here with the CRA cars and finished sixth.
"I know it's close to the lake (Lake Michigan) too. It gets really humid at night around here, especially when it's hot, and the track really slicks up. It can be hard to find the set-up for; you're always turning.
"We definitely expect to run in the top-10. I'll be disappointed if we're not in the top-five really. Our car is definitely capable with Brad's (Keselowski) stuff. Do we have a chance to win? Yah, I think we do. If we have no mistakes on pit road and I can stay out of trouble."
Finley, who has already earned outlaw late model victories at Spartan Speedway in Michigan, has plans to race in two more ARCA RE/MAX Series events in 2009 - again at Toledo in early September and the season finale at Rockingham Speedway.
Finley's cars in the ARCA RE/MAX Series and in the outlaw late model ranks will sport prominent decals from Auto Value / Bumper to Bumper Parts Stores and Certified Service Centers as well as AutoParts2020.com throughout 2009.