Busy Weekend Ahead for Speed; Championship Run at Toledo and NASCAR Sprint Cup Debut DENVER, N.C. (October 9, 2008) -- This weekend will mark the conclusion of an exciting season for the No. 2 Red Bull Toyota team as well as new adventures...
Busy Weekend Ahead for Speed; Championship Run at Toledo and NASCAR Sprint Cup Debut
DENVER, N.C. (October 9, 2008) -- This weekend will mark the conclusion of an exciting season for the No. 2 Red Bull Toyota team as well as new adventures for Eddie Sharp Racing's Scott Speed. Speed and his team head to Toledo Speedway with an 85-point lead in the hunt for the 2008 ARCA RE/MAX Series Championship title. The team has consistently performed all season, finishing out of the top-10 only three times in 20 events. All it takes is one more top-10 finish and Eddie Sharp Racing will take home its first Championship. Patience and conservatism have been among the themes discussed for the weekend. Also in the midst of his Championship weekend, should he qualify, Speed will travel between Toledo, Ohio and Charlotte, N.C. to make his Sprint Cup Debut in the No. 82 Red Bull Toyota on Saturday night.
"If someone doesn't crash us or we don't break, we should be able to walk away with (the championship)," Speed said. "We just have to do what we've done all year. And that is show up and to do our best."
Making an impression on and off the track, Speed is tied for the most wins this season and most SIM Factory Pole awards, and leads the lists for the Championship, Aaron's Lap Leader, SunTrust Rookie of the Year, R.E. Lightning Challenge, and the Fast Track Award. Speed turned heads with his zebra driving shoes and out-of-the norm garage attire, but his performance on track this year in the ARCA and Craftsman Truck Series has locked him in as someone to watch for years to come. This weekend he is looking to wrap up the title and his ARCA career in true "Speed" fashion.
ESR has seen a lot of success at Toledo Speedway in the past. Last season teammate Ken Butler, III won the speedway's May race while ESR alum Michael McDowell took the victory in October. McDowell started each of the two events from the pole position. The Red Bull team is packing a weapon this weekend, the No. 2 Toyota that Speed wheeled to victory at Berlin Raceway in July is Speed's favorite short track Camry.
"We are excited about the opportunity to go to Toledo and win the Championship this year," said Crew Chief Patrick Donahue. "Last year we were locked into second and despite the win, couldn't take the title. Everyone is prepared for the weekend, just as we have been every weekend, all season. TRD is prepared, the team is prepared, the car is ready. We left Daytona, the only race we failed to finish, 38th in points. To come this far is something that every member of this team should be very proud of."
ARCA RE/MAX Series practice runs from 12:30 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, October 11, 2008. SIM Factory Pole Qualifying follows Saturday at 3:30 p.m. Sunday afternoon, all cars line up on the front stretch in short-track fashion where the ARCA RE/MAX Series drivers will sign autographs from 12:30 p.m. until 1:15 p.m. Driver Introductions begin at 1:15 p.m. The green flag for the Hantz Group 200 by Belle Tire and Federated Car Care at Toledo Speedway drops Sunday, October 12th, at 2:00 p.m. All times listed are EASTERN.