Sam Mayer, driver of the #21 Chevy Accessories Chevrolet celebrates winning the Sioux Chief Championship during the Sioux Chief PowerPEX 200 for the ARCA Menards Series at Memphis International Raceway on Saturday, September 26, 2020. (Barry Cantrell/ARCA Racing)
Sam Mayer, driver of the #21 Chevy Accessories Chevrolet celebrates winning the Sioux Chief Championship during the Sioux Chief PowerPEX 200 for the ARCA Menards Series at Memphis International Raceway on Saturday, September 26, 2020. (Barry Cantrell/ARCA Racing)

PIT BOX: Sam Mayer Set To Close Out Second East Title at Pensacola


Sam Mayer has been nothing short of dominating in the ARCA Menards Series East, with four wins and a second-place finish in five starts.

He’ll clinch his second straight East title — and first under the ARCA Menards banner — just by firing the engine and rolling off the grid Sunday at 5 Flags Speedway in Pensacola, Florida.

RELATED: ARCA Menards East Finale At 5 Flags Pushed To Sunday

Standing in Mayer’s way of making it a race & series sweep like he did last year at Dover International Speedway includes the likes of Grant Enfinger, Jesse Love and Ty Gibbs as the East concludes the 2020 season.

Fans will be able to attend the race at Five Flags (buy tickets) and can watch the race live on Trackpass on NBC Gold.


Pensacola 200 presented by Inspectra Thermal Solutions

WHAT TO WATCH FOR:

Mayer started the season with a win in Florida at New Smyrna Speedway, and he can cap the schedule with a return victory in the Sunshine State.

He’s already clinched the Sioux Chief Showdown, and can add a second ARCA trophy to his awards haul.

Pensacola 200Consider also that Mayer is part of a group of East champions over the last five years that includes NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoor Truck Series playoff driver Tyler Ankrum (2018 champion), NASCAR Xfinity series playoff drivers Harrison Burton (2017 champion) and Justin Haley, and William Byron (2015 champion), who won the 2017 Xfinity Series title and has qualified for the NASCAR Cup Series playoffs each of the last two seasons.

Mayer, 17, won the East championship last year under the previous NASCAR K&N Pro Series, and will become the first driver since Ryan Truex (2009-10) to win back-to-back East titles. He’ll be the seventh driver since the series began in 1987 to accomplish the feat, a list that includes NASCAR Hall of Famer Mike Stefanik.

If he wants to add to his winner’s trophy case, though, he’ll have plenty of competition at Pensacola.

Enfinger, currently fourth in the NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series playoffs with three wins this year, will be piloting the No. 77 Champion Power Equipment/Breland Homes Ford for car owner Chad Bryant. Enfinger has 16 career ARCA Menards Series wins and was the 2015 series champion with car owner Maury Gallagher, whose organization now includes Mayer.

Enfinger’s Chad Bryant Racing teammate will be Derek Griffith, who won the pole and ran third at New Smyrna. And Love, the ARCA Menards Series West points leader racing for Bill McAnally, will be back with Venturini Motorsports for the weekend after an impressive fourth place at Indiana’s Winchester Speedway.

Ty Gibbs, the only driver not named Sam Mayer to win an East race this year, is locked into second place and has already clinched the Bounty Rookie of the Year Award.

After that, it’s all up in the air.

Just three points separate Nick Sanchez, Mason Diaz and Parker Retzlaff. Chase Cabre, who was runner-up in the East last year, is just nine points behind Retzlaff and only four in front of Justin S. Carroll in seventh.

RACING REFERENCE: Previous East races at 5 Flags | East Series drivers stats 5 Flags | 2020 ARCA Menards Series East Standings

RACE FACTS

RACE

Pensacola 200 presented by Inspectra Thermal Solutions

PLACE

5 Flags Speedway, Pensacola, Fla.

DATE

Sunday, Oct. 11, 2020

TIME

3 p.m. CT (4 p.m. ET)

TELEVISION

TrackPass on NBC Gold (live)

TRACK LAYOUT

Half-mile paved oval

EVENT SCHEDULE

Sunday, Oct. 11 — General Tire Pole Award Qualifying: 12:30-1:10 p.m.; Pensacola 200 presented by Inspectra Thermal Solutions: 3 p.m.

TWITTER

@5FlagsSpeedway, @ARCA_Racing, @NASCARRoots

HASHTAG

#ARCAMenards

RACE CENTER | ENTRY LIST | RACE EVENT GUIDE

CREW CHIEF HANDOUT: The starting field for the Pensacola 200 presented by Inspectra Thermal Solutions is limited to 22 plus provisional positions. This event will be run under the 2020 ARCA Menards Series East rules, procedures, regulations and specifications.

QUALIFYING: Starting position will be set by each car’s fastest recorded lap in the qualifying session.

RACE PIT STOP: No adding or moving tires to or from pit box once race has started. A maximum four (4) crew members may service car. No tires and fuel may be added outside of the break.

The Pensacola 200 presented by Inspectra Thermal Solutions will be 200 laps (100 miles) and is to be run in three (3) segments. The race will have two (2) breaks, the first at or near the conclusion of Lap 75 and the second at or near the conclusion of Lap 150. At the conclusion of the break, lead lap vehicles that elected to pit will line up – in the order they were running at the beginning of the break – behind the lead lap vehicles that elected not to pit in order of running.

The maximum tire allotment available for this event is as follows: Per ARCA Rulebook, maximum number of tires allowed in pit box for use in race is six (6).