KIMMEL CONQUERS POCONO TO EARN THIRD WIN OF 2006 Long Pond, PA (July 22, 2006) -- Frank Kimmel overcame adversity Saturday afternoon at the Pocono Raceway to earn his third victory of 2006 in his Pork Ford Fusion. Kimmel was able to come...
KIMMEL CONQUERS POCONO TO EARN THIRD WIN OF 2006
Long Pond, PA (July 22, 2006) -- Frank Kimmel overcame adversity Saturday afternoon at the Pocono Raceway to earn his third victory of 2006 in his Pork Ford Fusion. Kimmel was able to come from one-lap down at the midway point of the race on the 2.5-mile speedway to pick up his 67th ARCA RE/MAX Series career victory and third career victory at the Pocono Raceway.
"Wow, this is a really big win for us," said Kimmel. "I was not sure how it was going to play out when I felt the vibration there early in the race. That was totally my call because it really felt like I had a tire going down when I was entering the corner. So we decided to come down pit road and change the tires under green. The team checked everything over and it looked fine so maybe I was still a little gun-shy from the June race when we had those tire problems. But we were able to get back on the lead lap with about 30 laps to go and made one last pit stop which got us back into position to take the win. The pit crew really gave me a great stop there at the end when we really needed it. I think the true sign of a championship-caliber team is the ability to overcome adversity and I think we showed that today coming from a lap down to win at Pocono."
Kimmel had picked up his second Pork Pole award of the 2006 season by posting a lap at 165.004 mph on Friday afternoon. But with Mother Nature playing a role in the start of the Pennsylvania ARCA 200 by producing downpours on the race track early Saturday morning, the race had to be delayed for nearly 90 minutes. When the field was finally able to take the green flag, Kimmel remained in the top-five while experiencing some tight conditions in the race car in his early runs. But on lap 36, Kimmel felt a vibration in his Pork Ford and made the decision to bring the car to the attention of his Pork Racing team under the green flag. Crew chief, Bill Kimmel and the team changed right side tires and made a complete check of the race car finding no evident problems and sending Kimmel back onto the race track. However when Kimmel returned to the race track, a caution came out over the field trapping Kimmel one-lap down. The team took advantage of the caution and came back to pit road for one last check around the race car and fresh left side tires.
When the green flag flew again, Kimmel restarted on the inside of race leader Chase Miller and was scored in the 24th position. But Kimmel was able to jump in front of Miller and hold onto the tail of the lead lap until another caution flew nearly 15 laps later. The Pork Racing team would once again bolt on four fresh tires and prepare for a run to the finish of the 80-lap race in hopes to making their way back to the lead. After making it back to the second position, Kimmel continued to run with Miller until engine problems on Miller's car forced him to relinquish the lead to Kimmel allowing him to earn his third win of 2006.
"We knew the four car would be really strong today," said Kimmel. "He took off there when the green flag came out, but when I was running ahead of him on the tail-end of the lead lap, it really showed me that I could run with him and if we could get back on the lead lap, I might have something for him. He did have some engine problems there at the end of the race, but we were in position to capitalize and get another win for Pork. I just can't believe how our season has turned around and I just hope we can keep the consistency going as we head to Gateway next weekend."
Following the Pennsylvania 200 Kimmel remains the leader of the ARCA RE/MAX Series Championship point's standings and is now 60 points ahead of Bobby Gerhart. The next race on the schedule for the ARCA RE/MAX Series will take place on Friday, July 28 at the Gateway International Raceway. The green flag is scheduled for 9:00pm ET and will be televised live on SPEED.