NASCAR Driver, Duke Student Paulie Harraka Teams with Venturini Motorsports for Daytona

NASCAR Driver, Duke Student Paulie Harraka Teams with Venturini Motorsports for Daytona

(CONCORD, N.C. - February 6, 2012) - Duke University honor student and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver Paulie Harraka will join Venturini Motorsports for a single-race effort in the 2012 ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards season opener at Daytona International Speedway on February 18.

"I'm excited to be competing in the ARCA race at Daytona with Venturini Motorsports," Harraka said. "Daytona International Speedway is certainly the hallowed grounds of motorsports, and I've looked at the high banks there in awe for years. To have the opportunity to compete for the first time on those high banks, and to be doing it with this team, is extremely exciting for me."

Harraka, a former NASCAR Drive for Diversity driver, will be a part of Venturini's five-team effort at Daytona, piloting the No. 55 Venturini Motorsports Toyota. 

In addition to competing in the ARCA opener at Daytona, Harraka has teamed with veteran NASCAR crew chief Richie Wauters and will compete for the Sunoco Rookie of the Year title with newly formed Wauters Motorsportsharrakapaulie122.jpg in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.

As a senior at Duke University, Harraka is not your typical college student. The 22-year-old from Wayne, N.J. is an overachiever in every sense of the term.

During his collegiate career, Harraka has won countless NASCAR races while juggling a full load of academic studies; focusing on engineering, sports psychology, leadership, and business. He's also interned at Joe Gibbs Racing in their research and development division, as well as interning in corporate marketing at NASCAR's New York office.

Harraka is a past champion in NASCAR's Whelen All-American Series, and has posted two different NASCAR Rookie of the Year titles: NASCAR Whelen All American Series and NASCAR Camping World Series West (now K&N Pro Series West). Most recently, Harraka posted three victories in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West.

Beyond his racing and academic focus, Harraka is a celebrity ambassador for Childhelp, a national nonprofit that works with abused, neglected, and at-risk children. There's no wonder Harraka has been featured on everything from ESPN and Sports Illustrated to Fox News and The New York Times.

Practice for the season-opening race starts on Thursday, February 16, while Menards Pole Qualifying presented by Ansell is Friday, February 17, at 2 p.m. The race, scheduled to be televised live by SPEED, is Saturday at 4:30 p.m.

From Team Release 

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