Cleary Motorsports Return To Salem; Looking For Another Strong Finish SALEM, Indiana (September 14, 2006) - - The last time the ARCA RE/MAX Series saw Cleary Motorsports and Gary Sherman enter a race, the team once again showed their strength...
Cleary Motorsports Return To Salem; Looking For Another Strong Finish
SALEM, Indiana (September 14, 2006) - - The last time the ARCA RE/MAX Series saw Cleary Motorsports and Gary Sherman enter a race, the team once again showed their strength by claiming a career best fourth place finish at Berlin Raceway in July. Now, continuing to inch closer to victory lane, the team feels with a little luck, Cleary Motorsports will be hoisting the winner's trophy on Saturday night at Salem Speedway.
"It's been a year since we've competed at Salem, but the team is ready to make the return," said driver Gary Sherman. "Due to the lack of sponsorship we weren't able to compete in the spring race, but after our great run at Berlin and respectable finish at Toledo, we wanted to try and put this team back in the top five this weekend. We had a top ten here last fall, so everyone on the Cleary Motorsports team is looking to reproduce that finish."
Sherman continued, "Salem is a very unique track. It reminds me of Bristol, but it has a little bit of Darlington in it too. It's an awesome racetrack, very rough but very fast. We struggled in practice last year, but qualifying and the race we were good. We're bringing the same and only car that we own to the racetrack this weekend; hopefully we can go home in one piece."
Aiding the Cleary Motorsports team will be ARCA RE/MAX Series veteran Andy Belmont. Belmont, a Salem Speedway ace in the series will serve as a consultant with the team on Saturday with Cleary Motorsports running under the No. 1 banner for the Eddie Gilstrap Motors ARCA Fall Classic presented by Advance Auto Parts.
"Having Andy helping us this weekend is huge for Cleary Motorsports. I think he can help us. He knows how to get around Salem and that's important. We appreciate Andy taking the time to help us this weekend, his veteran experience will definitely be an influence on our race team," stated car owner Rob Cleary.
Continuing to hinder the team is the lack of sponsorship. For the fourth time this season, Cleary Motorsports heads to the track without funding. A stunning victory in Saturday's double-header with the ARCA Lincoln Welder Truck Series would be some momentum in the sponsorship department. "At the beginning of the season, we had plans on running every race except Daytona, then we really decided that if we were going to be fast and competitive we had to do it the right way, so we cut back to a limited schedule," continued Cleary. "We were decent at Toledo, but Berlin it was a great feeling, I just wish it would have been televised. Now, Salem allows us another opportunity to make a name for ourselves, we think we can do that."
Cleary Motorsports has competed in seven ARCA RE/MAX Series races since their inception and the team has faired well. In those seven races, the team has amassed two top fives finishes while collecting an additional two top ten finishes. "Cleary Motorsports has a good track record we would like to continue that record this weekend. I just want to thank my crew who are all volunteers for the long hours and the commitment they have put in to allow me to do what I love, I'm proud to be a part of this team," concluded Sherman.
Rolling into Salem, Sherman a former American Speed Association driver has seven ARCA RE/MAX Series starts to his resume with a career best finish of fourth at Berlin Raceway (July 2006) while holding three additional top ten finishes at Berlin Raceway (July 2005), Lake Erie Speedway (August 2005) and Salem Speedway (September 2005). He also has a career best short qualifying effort of fifth at Berlin Raceway (July 2006) followed by a career best superspeedway time trials effort of 25th at Gateway International Raceway (July 2005).
The Eddie Gilstrap Motors ARCA Fall Classic presented by Advance Auto Parts (200 laps/110 miles) is the 21st of 23 events on the 2006 ARCA RE/MAX Series schedule. This weekend marks the last of the one-day race schedule for the season. Practice begins Saturday with a hour and half (1:05pm-2:35pm) session planned. Pork pole qualifying is on tap later that afternoon (4:00pm). The race is set to take the green flag beginning at 7:15. The race won't be televised but arcaracing.com will have all the latest news and results from the track.