Daytona: Alli Owens preview

DEBUT WEEKEND Growing up in Daytona Beach, Fla. it's no surprise that ARCA RE/MAX Series rookie Alli Owens is bubbling with excitement over her entry in the ARCA 200 at Daytona International Speedway. Not only does this race mark her first with...

DEBUT WEEKEND

Growing up in Daytona Beach, Fla. it's no surprise that ARCA RE/MAX Series rookie Alli Owens is bubbling with excitement over her entry in the ARCA 200 at Daytona International Speedway. Not only does this race mark her first with DGM Racing, it also marks her series debut and first race on the famed 2.5 mile superspeedway.

"This is a dream come true," said Owens, driver of the No. 12 ElectrifyingCareers.com Chevrolet. "I still remember visiting the speedway for the first time. I was in the third grade and we went on a class field trip to Daytona USA. We took the tram, toured the pits and checked out the garages. It was the best field trip ever. After that trip, I knew that one day I would race there."

Owens path to DIS has brought her to the ARCA RE/MAX Series - a series considered to be a cost-effective training ground for tomorrow's NASCAR stars. She hopes to follow in the footsteps of drivers named Busch, Allison, Parsons and Schrader, all of whom have won in the series before launching their NASCAR careers.

"ARCA is very competitive and has a long history as a stepping stone series," said Owens. "That is one of the reasons why I'm racing here in 2008. I plan to learn as much as I can as I prepare for my career in NASCAR." In 2008, Owens has partnered with DGM Racing, a longtime fixture in the series. Under the watchful eye of series veteran Mario Gosselin, DGM Racing has enjoyed much success, scoring two poles and three wins. In last year's ARCA 200, Gosselin led for 21 laps before an incident in turn four ended his chance for victory.

"Anyone who's raced in Florida knows of Mario," said Owens. "He has a reputation as a fierce competitor. When the opportunity came up to partner with him, it didn't take long for me to say yes. "Mario has taken me under his wing and truly believes in me," continued Owens. "He never second guesses me and trusts my feedback. Also, he has built a team that is second to none. With their support, I'm confident we will have many strong showings this season."

TEST, TEST, TEST - In preparation for the ARCA 200, Alli Owens tested her No. 12 ElectrifyingCareers.com Chevrolet extensively. The 19-year-old tested at Daytona International Speedway in December marking her first laps in an ARCA RE/MAX Series car. She followed that up with two tests at Talladega Superspeedway in January. *

NGWSD - Alli Owens was an award presenter at Volusia County School District's National Girls & Women in Sports Day (NGWSD) Celebration. The second annual event, held on Feb. 6, offered recognition of college-bound student athletes and awards for extraordinary Volusia County girls. More than 600 middle and high school girls attended the celebration which was held at DeLand (Fla.) High School. The Volusia County School District's NGWSD Celebration is one of more than 1,000 events taking place across the country for NGWSD. Congress has proclaimed this national day each year since 1987. It recognizes the progress of girls and women in sports and the benefits that sports and fitness activities can bring to the lives of all girls and women. The day is organized nationally by the Girl Scouts of the USA, Girls Incorporated, National Association for Girls and Women in Sports, Women's Sports Foundation and the YWCA of the USA.

GRAND MARSHAL - On February 2, Alli Owens served as the Co-Grand Marshal for the Inaugural Community Motorsports Parade. The event marked the start of Daytona Speedweeks festivities. NASCAR driver Mike Skinner was the other Co-Grand Marshal.

-credit: dgm

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Series ARCA
Drivers Mike Skinner , Mario Gosselin , Alli Owens