KIMMEL BACK IN VICTORY LANE AT KANSAS Kansas City, MO (July 2, 2006) -- After several weeks of misfortune, Frank Kimmel and his Pork Racing team made their way back to victory lane Saturday afternoon at the Kansas Speedway in the Kansas...
KIMMEL BACK IN VICTORY LANE AT KANSAS
Kansas City, MO (July 2, 2006) -- After several weeks of misfortune, Frank Kimmel and his Pork Racing team made their way back to victory lane Saturday afternoon at the Kansas Speedway in the Kansas Lottery $200 Grand ARCA RE/MAX Series event. Kimmel started the event from the fifth position and took over the lead on lap 127 of the 134-lap event taking his second victory of the 2006 ARCA RE/MAX season and third victory at the Kansas Speedway. Saturday's win also makes Kimmel the winningest driver at the 1.5-mile speedway in the five-year history of the race track with a total of three wins including the 2001 win in a NASCAR Winston West Series car and the 2002 victory in the ARCA RE/MAX Series car.
"What a great day for this Pork Racing team," said Kimmel. "We came to Kansas and did exactly what we needed to do and that was to win the race and gain some ground in the ARCA points standings. We have had such bad luck this season that realistically my only goal for this week was to finish the race and I knew we had a car capable of a top-three finish. This entire Pork Racing team did a great job today and I hope this will help us turn the corner to better luck for the rest of this season."
"It is pretty awesome to be the winningest driver at Kansas Speedway," said Kimmel. "This is a really special race track for us because the National Pork Board entertains so many of their producers at this race track and they have made this something of their home track. We had Pork producers from several nearby states attending the event today and it was great to have them in victory lane with us."
As the race took the green flag Kimmel was content to ride in the fifth position and allow the car to work into the set-up that crew chief, Bill Kimmel, had put underneath the No. 46 Pork Ford Fusion. Following the first two cautions of the event on lap five and on lap 26, the Tri-State Motorsports team made the decision not to visit pit road and had worked their way up to the second position for the lap 28 restart. But when another caution flew on lap 30, the team decided to pit for four tires and fuel, but no adjustments were needed as Kimmel reported that the Pork Ford was handling as good as it had been all weekend.
When the field got back to green flag conditions, another car made contact with Kimmel's right-front fender forcing Kimmel back to pit road under the lap 38 caution to check a tire rub. Following the unscheduled pit stop, Kimmel would restart the event from the 20th position and quickly begin moving his way back through the field before the feeling of a tire going flat would once again force the Pork Racing team to pit road under the next caution flag on lap 49 where they would once again take on four fresh tires and fuel. When the field returned to green on lap 58, Kimmel was ready to get into a racing rhythm on the track and moved into the sixth position before the team would plan to make their final pit stop for fuel and tires in order to make it to the end of the race. When another caution flew on lap 76, Kimmel made his way one last time to the attention of his Pork Racing pit crew and would restart from the 12th position.
With the car handling as good as it had all day, Kimmel was able to move from the 12th position to the second position in only 16 laps. On lap 127, Kimmel would take the lead and never look back as he took his second win of the 2006 ARCA RE/MAX Series season.
"Early in the race we were tight entering the corner but really good off so I knew it would only take a slight adjustment to get the car to be perfect," said Kimmel. "We had a little bad luck with some contact with another race car the forced us to pit due to some right side tire rub. But there at the end of the race we were free and still able to drive around some of the really strong race cars. I knew at that point that we had a top-three and with the pit strategy from Bill (Kimmel), we were able to get enough fuel in the car at the right point in order to make it for the finish. The last set of tires we put on with less then ten laps to go in the race we were awesome and we could just pull away."
Following Saturday's win at the Kansas Speedway, Kimmel remains second in ARCA RE/MAX Series Championship points, now only 90 points behind leader, Bobby Gerhart. Prior to the ARCA RE/MAX Series event, Kimmel competed Thursday night in Round Three of the IROC Series at the Daytona International Speedway Road Course where he finished in the eighth position and is now part of a three-way tie for the sixth position in IROC Championship points with only one race remaining. The next event for the ARCA RE/MAX Series will come on Friday, July 7 at the Kentucky Speedway.