Coming Off Career-Best Finish at Rockingham, Alli Owens Ramped Up for Talladega TALLADEGA AL - In 57 years of ARCA RE/MAX Series competition, no female driver has ever won an ARCA RE/MAX Series race. Shawna Robinson and Erin Crocker got close...
Coming Off Career-Best Finish at Rockingham, Alli Owens Ramped Up for Talladega
TALLADEGA AL - In 57 years of ARCA RE/MAX Series competition, no female driver has ever won an ARCA RE/MAX Series race. Shawna Robinson and Erin Crocker got close with second place finishes, but never a victory.
After Alli Owens qualified second at Daytona this year, many thought she just might be the gal to bust down the winner's circle barrier. But after running second in the early going, the Daytona Beach, Florida driver got caught up in the "big one". She was okay, but her day was done.
Now fast-forward to this past Sunday afternoon at Rockingham Speedway where the 20-year-old driver finished a career-best 12th in the No. 19 Eddie D'Hondt Motorsports-ElectrifyingCareers.com Toyota.
"The ElectrifyingCareers.com car was really good," said Owens. "We went a little too far on our first adjustment and our car was too loose on the next run. We lost a little ground because of that, but everything came together for our last run. The (No.) 19 team did a great job today and ended the day with a solid finish.
"I learned a lot today. I learned how to handle the track and how to handle the car. We ran lap times at the end of the race that would have been good enough for a top-five finish."
Now, with her confidence ramped up, it's on to Talladega Superspeedway for the ARCA RE/MAX 250 Friday afternoon, April 24.
"Everyone at D'Hondt Motorsports team is stoked about Talladega. We put the ElectrifyingCareers.com car on the front row at Daytona, so we're really confident about our superspeedway program. Our car for Talladega is just as good, if not better than what we brought to Daytona.
"Talladega (Superspeedway) and Daytona (International Speedway) are both really fast Superspeedways, but that's about where the similarities end. Daytona seems like the evil stepsister of Talladega. Daytona has a really rough surface and you fight that all race long. Talladega has a silky, smooth surface and you can really feel the speed because you're not focused on the bumps. It also has great three-wide racing."
Three-wide racing that's been known to spawn big-time crashes.
"There's always a 'big one' at Talladega. I don't think there's a full proof strategy to avoid it. You're always in danger of being involved in it, whether you're in the front or the back. Since it's been repaved, the track has given everyone so much confidence. The grip is phenomenal and makes drivers think that their cars will do whatever they want them to. It makes them push the envelope a lot further than they normally would and that's when accidents happen. It's almost like the drivers are their own worst enemy at Talladega, where as the track is your enemy when you race at Daytona. Last year I tried to ride around in the back and log laps until the end. I ended up getting caught up in a wreck, so I know there are no safe zones."
The event at Talladega will mark Owens's 15th career ARCA RE/MAX Series start.
"I know I can win at this level," said Owens. "I'm with a team that can win in this series. Eddie D'Hondt Motorsports brings the best equipment to the table. I have a lot of quality people behind me who believe in me, who have confidence in me. I really feel like I'm ready to win - that I could be that first female winner."