Daytona: Bryan Silas preview

Testing Over; Silas Ready To Embrace Rookie Season In Daytona "Florida Native Looks To Shine In Hometown Race" DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Tuesday, February 6, 2007) - - The testing is over. The race is five days away. And Bryan Silas is ready. Silas...

Testing Over; Silas Ready To Embrace Rookie Season In Daytona
"Florida Native Looks To Shine In Hometown Race"

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Tuesday, February 6, 2007) - - The testing is over. The race is five days away. And Bryan Silas is ready.

Silas aboard Andy Hillenburg's No. 11 Fast Track High Performance Driving School-PBG Chevrolet Monte Carlo is looking to make an early dent in his rookie season by pulling off his first career top-10 finish in Saturday's ARCA 200 at Daytona.

No doubt that Silas is ready for the biggest race on the ARS (ARCA RE/MAX Series) schedule as the Florida native has spent a majority of his off season tackling several different tracks across the United States including Daytona International Speedway and a recent test at the breathtaking 2.666-mile Superspeedway of Talladega Superspeedway all in an effort to prepare him for taking the ARCA RE/MAX Series Rookie-of-the-Year crown.

"I can't believe Daytona is here," said Silas, a native of Stuart, Florida. "If I said I wasn't excited or nervous about this week, I would be lying. We've spent a lot of time, effort and money to prepare us for this race, I have a good feeling."

When asked about all of the recent testing, Silas mentioned, "It's been great testing as much as possible. There are a lot of different tracks I haven't raced on before. The more time I am in the seat, the better driver I will become. That was our goal this off season and I think I've made great strides. Testing at Daytona and Talladega has been crucial. I've been able to learn more about the tracks, while also focusing on the cars and the draft. I just hope all the testing pays off."

Heading into Daytona this week, Silas looks to improve on his overall performance from the preseason testing session which saw his Chevrolet Monte Carlo post the 23rd fastest effort with a time of 49.958 seconds at 180.151 MPH. "We've made some more changes to our car in hopes of making it faster. I'm surrounded by a lot of great and talented people, so there is no doubt in my mind that we'll be stronger this week."

"It's important for us to leave Daytona with a solid run," Silas added. "We're running for the championship and the game is a whole lot different than last year. We had some fun, but the goal was trying to get some seat time and get comfortable racing in the ARCA RE/MAX Series. I'm after the Rookie-of-the-Year this season but the championship is definitely not out of our reach. If you come out of Daytona in one piece that usually means a sign of good things to come."

Unlike Talladega, the avid late model competitor has a teammate for this week's event. Chad McCumbee, who also competes full time in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series for Green Light Racing will return to ARCA and drive the No. 62 NOS Energy Drink Chevrolet. "Chad's been helping and teaching me a lot," Silas remarked. "It's nice to know that I have someone on my side to work with on race day. I know everyone is a little nervous working with rookies (in the draft), but Chad and I have worked together this off season, so I know I can count on him."

Andy Hillenburg, a two-time Daytona winner and car owner for Silas remains optimistic for race weekend. "We're going into Daytona with a lot more steam then we've had in the past. Our cars are better, the crew is top notch, and the drivers are focused. This is one of the most competitive races of the season. We look to have a clean week up until race day and hope for a competitive finish from both cars."

Heading into DIS, Silas hailing from Stuart, Florida has six ARCA RE/MAX Series starts to his credit with a career best finish of 16th at Toledo Speedway (September 2006). He holds a career best short track time trials effort of eighth at Berlin Raceway (July 2006). A 16th place qualifying effort at Talladega Superspeedway (October 2006) is Silas's best Superspeedway run to date.

When not competing or testing for FTR, Bryan competes in both the Sportsman and Limited Late Model divisions at Orlando Speedworld and New Smyrna Speedway.The ARCA 200 at Daytona (80 laps/200 miles) is the first of 23 events on the 2007 ARCA RE/MAX Series schedule. Practice begins Thursday, February 8 with a five-hour (12:00pm-5:00pm EST) practice session planned. Qualifying is slated for Friday, February 9 at 12:00pm EST. Final practice is limited to 55 minutes (5:15-6:10pm EST) on Friday evening. The ARCA 200 at Daytona will be aired live on the SPEED channel beginning at 4:00pm.

-credit: ftr

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Series ARCA
Drivers Andy Hillenburg , Chad McCumbee , Bryan Silas