In recent weeks, NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series driver Chris Wimmer, has moved up several spots in the points standings on the strength of strong finishes, despite qualifying being washed out two weeks in a row and having to start from the rear.
In recent weeks, NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series driver Chris Wimmer, has moved up several spots in the points standings on the strength of strong finishes, despite qualifying being washed out two weeks in a row and having to start from the rear. Saturday night, Wimmer makes his debut at Gateway International Raceway at the Missouri-Illinois Dodge Dealers Ram Tough 200, the home track for his team, Foristell, Mo.-based MB Motorsports. The track is one of the more challenging on the circuit and Wimmer knows he has his work cut out for him.
"I'm a little nervous about racing at Gateway," said Wimmer, "because of the fact it is a unique track and it's kind of like a road course, due to the fact you have to shift on every lap. But at the same time, it'll be pretty awesome to race in front of the hometown fans here in St. Louis and be able to sleep in my own bed. (MB Motorsports owner/crew chief) Mike Mittler and MB Motorsports are well known by the race fans here and I hope I can give the fans a reason to be proud of their hometown NASCAR team."
While Wimmer has not raced at Gateway before, his older brother, NASCAR Nextel Cup rookie, Scott Wimmer, has raced here in the Busch Series and Wimmer plans to pick his older sibling's brain about the track. "Scott had two top-10s in three races there, so hopefully he'll be able to pass down some tips for me," he said. "It's been a great advantage for me to have a brother who has raced a lot of these tracks already so I have a little bit of a heads up when I go there myself."
Mittler is confident Wimmer will finish strong Saturday night. "Gateway can be tough, but Chris knows how to use his head and stay out of trouble," he said. "Hopefully, we can get away from the rain this week and get qualifying in. It's important to start well here because passing comes at a premium and with the long, green-flag stretches that Gateway tends to have, it's easy to go a lap down early. But like I said, I have faith in Chris and our team to do well."
During the race, Wimmer's #63 Ford will be carrying a special decal in honor of fallen NHRA top-fuel racer, Darrell Russell, who died in a crash at the NHRA event in June. "Since Gateway is our home track," said Mittler, "we felt it was important to remember a great man and a great racer who lost his life here. We'll carry the decal with honor in memory of Darrell."
Onboard with Wimmer for this race is local sponsor, Dave Porter Truck Sales, "Your Star Connection," located in Wright City, Mo. Dave Porter Truck Sales specializes in premium low-mileage semi trucks and trailers. The most popular lines include Western Star, Peterbilt, and Kenworth semi tractors. Nationwide sales (49 of 50 states) cater to the smaller owner/operator. A full-service facility is available for customer service, repairs, parts, and "The Chrome Connection," all maintained by eight qualified service technicians with over 100 years combined experience. Dave Porter Truck Sales is located on I-70 (exit 199) in Wright City. Contact Dave Porter Truck Sales at 800-407-8008 or e-mail: Dptsllc@aol.com.
The Missouri-Illinois Dodge Dealers Ram Tough 200 at Gateway International Raceway in Madison, Ill., will be carried live on SPEED Channel at 7 p.m. local time and on MRN Radio live at 6:30 p.m. local time.