Tim Russell's Busy Holiday Starts with Hagans Racing Debut at Kansas 23-Year-Old HR Development Driver Set for Kansas ARCA and New Smyrna SLM Double CONCORD, NC (June 28, 2006) -- While most Americans celebrate their country's independence...
Tim Russell's Busy Holiday Starts with Hagans Racing Debut at Kansas
23-Year-Old HR Development Driver Set for Kansas ARCA and New Smyrna SLM Double
CONCORD, NC (June 28, 2006) -- While most Americans celebrate their country's independence by holding family get-togethers around the pool or barbecue, or perhaps enjoying a festive aerial fireworks display in their backyards or in their town squares, Tim Russell will be spending his Fourth of July weekend either at a racetrack or traveling to one.
Russell has a big Independence Day holiday ahead of him, as the 23-year-old is set to make his debut behind the wheel of the Hagans Racing #9 Dodge sponsored by Rinnai Tankless Water Heaters on Saturday, July 1st, at Kansas Speedway. Immediately after stepping out of the #9 car, Russell will board an airplane bound for New Smyrna Beach, FL, where the young star will be racing in his #36 Rinnai-sponsored Super Late Model in the Clyde Hart Memorial 200 at New Smyrna Speedway on Sunday afternoon.
It may mean not being able to take part in a family gathering or watching some fireworks, but there's no place than inside a racecar that Tim Russell would rather be this weekend.
"It's going to be one heck of a weekend, but I'm really excited about both of the races," said Russell. "I can't wait to make my first start for Hagans Racing at Kansas. They are a great organization, and we ran really well in our test session at Kansas last week, so I'm expecting good things when we get out there this weekend.
"Then once that race is over, we'll board a plane either Saturday night or Sunday morning for Florida. Our race at New Smyrna is at about 4pm Sunday afternoon, but we'll have all of our Super Late Model stuff there ready and waiting for us so that hopefully we can get out there and qualify and race for the win.
"Hopefully we'll bring home two wins this weekend. That is what we are working for."
First things first, Russell will have to get the job done for Hagans Racing in the Kansas Lottery $200 Grand at the 1.5-mile Kansas Speedway on Saturday. The Kansas event marks Russell's second ARCA RE/MAX series race of the 2006 season, following a 23rd-place finish at the season-opening race at Daytona in a family-owned Dodge.
Joining with the team that finished fifth in Daytona with driver and car owner Matt Hagans behind the wheel and second in the overall ARCA championship last season with driver Joey Miller, Russell knows that he now has all the ingredients necessary to run up front in the elite ARCA series.
"Hagans Racing is by far one of the strongest teams in ARCA today. Bobby Blount (Crew Chief) is a very smart guy and is a great teacher for a driver. The guys work very hard at getting these cars ready, so I hope that I can bring home a good finish for them."
Last week, Russell got his first on-track experience with Hagans Racing in a test session at Kansas Speedway. Russell set quick lap times, but getting the speed was just as important as getting to know and work with the Hagans Racing crew at the track.
"The whole team worked together really well at the test. We posted the fourth-fastest time and the car felt great. Having never been to Kansas before, the first couple of sessions were just learning how to drive there, but once I got the place figured out we were turning some pretty quick laps. I'm confident in the team and they're confident in me, and that's a huge motivation for Saturday's race.
If Russell is able to pull off the win at Kansas and repeat the deed the next night at New Smyrna, then maybe he will be able to relax a little bit with some family and friends around the pool on the Fourth of July...only with a couple more trophies next to him.