(TOLEDO, Ohio – June 18, 2015) – Chicagoland Speedway has been a staple on the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards calendar since the Joliet, Illinois track’s inaugural season in 2001. In 14 consecutive races on the 1.5-mile speedway, no driver has repeated in the win column. In fact, to add even more parity, there have been no repeat Menards Pole winners either.
However, one team does stand out there a little more than the others, and they’re a hometown favorite. In fact, while no driver has repeated as a winner at Chicagoland, Venturini Motorsports, complete with Chicago roots, is the only team to win more than one race at the state-of-the-art facility. Scott Lagasse, Jr. won there in the Venturini Motorsports No. 25 flagship machine in 2008, and then Kevin Swindell drove Venturini’s 55 car to the winner’s circle in 2012. Swindell’s feat was exceptional in that the Germantown, Tennessee second-generation racer pulled off the perfect scorecard, winning the Menards Pole presented by Ansell, leading every lap (100) and sweeping under the checkered flag as winner.
Swindell then of course received, whether he liked it or not, the traditional Victory Lane smooch from Venturini Motorsports patriarch Bill Venturini.
“Winning at Chicagoland means a lot to me,” said Venturini, the 1983 SCOTT Rookie of the Year and two-time ARCA national champion (1987 and 1991) driver. While his home and race shop is now in Concord, North Carolina, Venturini grew up in the “Windy City” located on the southern edge of Lake Michigan.
“Growing up in Chicago for 40 years, it’s nice to win on the home track, especially with all our friends and family there. Of course, it’s special to me, but all wins are special. We got a good shot this week.”
And that may be putting it mildly considering what the team is coming with for this year’s running of the SCOTT 150. That will include a three-car effort with NASCAR Xfinity Series driver Daniel Suarez in the No. 15 ARRIS Toyota, 10-time ARCA national champion Frank Kimmel in the No. 25 Ansell-Menards Toyota, and rookie Cody Coughlin in the No. 55 JEGS Toyota.
“I don’t care which team wins,” Venturini added, “as long as it’s a Venturini Motorsports car. Now I can’t speak for the drivers…they may have something to say about that…but a win is a win. I’ll take any one of them.”
If Venturini Motorsports were to win at Chicagoland Saturday, it would mark the team’s 40th career ARCA Racing Series triumph, a Victory Lane record that reaches back to 1983 when Venturini drove to the winner’s circle for the first time on the quarter-mile Flat Rock Speedway. He would follow with 11 more, giving the native Chicagoan 12 career wins total.
However, as Venturini eased out of the driver’s seat, the wins continued for the longtime ARCA team, wins that not only included Venturini’s son Billy at Salem Speedway in 2006, but with an interesting variety of drivers including current NASCAR drivers Joey Logano, Brennan Poole, Alex Bowman, John Wes Townley, Erik Jones, Justin Boston and Kyle Benjamin.
The team’s most recent win at Toledo Speedway back in mid-May also made major-league headlines when 15-year-old Todd Gilliland, who had just turned 15 two days before the race, became the youngest ARCA winner in history, 63 years and counting.
With 31 entries for this year’s SCOTT 150, odds are, if you’re playing the numbers game, that you’ll see another first-time Chicagoland winner. In fact, the only driver in Saturday’s starting field who has won at Chicagoland is Kimmel, who won there in 2003 driving for nine-time car owner champion Larry Clement. Kimmel, in the same 25 car he raced last week at Michigan, was very much up on the wheel, finishing second to Ross Kenseth in the 200-mile race last Friday.
On-track activity for the SCOTT 150 includes one practice session Friday, June 19 from 4:00 – 5:55 p.m. Raceday Saturday begins with Menards Pole Qualifying presented by Ansell at 2:30 p.m. followed by the SCOTT 150 at 6. The SCOTT 150 is live on FOX Sports 2.
In addition to live coverage on FOX Sports 2, arcaracing.com will feature live timing and scoring of all ARCA on-track activities to include practice, qualifying and the race.
Don Radebaugh, email@example.com
|ARCA RACING SERIES HISTORY, CHICAGOLAND SPEEDWAY|
|WINNERS & POLE WINNERS|
|DATE||WINNER||TIME/AVG. SPEED||POLE WINNER||POLE SPEED|
|9-1-01||Ed Berrier||1:37:11/92.260||Tim Steele||170.778 mph|
|9-7-02||Chad Blount||2:06:20/95.462||Chad Blount||174.633 mph|
|9-6-03||Frank Kimmel||1:55:47/104.160||Frank Kimmel||173.544 mph|
|9-11-04||Kyle Krisiloff||2:04:25/96.932||Stuart Kirby||174.554 mph|
|9-10-05||Dawayne Bryan||2:00:38/102.957||Joey Miller||177.212 mph|
|9-9-06||Steve Wallace||1:58:20/101.915||Steve Wallace||177.113 mph|
|9-8-07||Michael McDowell||1:52:03/107.630||Michael McDowell||176.817 mph|
|9-6-08||Scott Lagasse, Jr.||1:57:18/104.347||Ricky Stenhouse, Jr.||180.030 mph *NTR|
|8-28-09||Justin Lofton||1:21:04/111.020||Brian Ickler||177.637 mph|
|8-27-10||Patrick Sheltra||1:21:35/110.317||Craig Goess||177.749 mph|
|6-4-11||Ty Dillon||1:27:45/102.564||Josh Richards||177.509 mph|
|7-21-12||Kevin Swindell||1:03:47/141.103||Kevin Swindell||176.240 mph|
|7-21-13||Corey LaJoie||1:09:57/128.663||Ryan Blaney||173.310 mph|
|7-19-14||Mason Mitchell||1:21:50/109.980||John Wes Townley||172.117 mph|
|2001||Ed Berrier||Jason Jarrett||Tim Steele||Billy Venturini||John Metcalf|
|2002||Chad Blount||Rick Carelli||Frank Kimmel||Tony Ave||Jason Jarrett|
|2003||Frank Kimmel||Greg Sacks||Bob Strait||Brent Sherman||Wayne Anderson|
|2004||Kyle Krisiloff||TJ Bell||Christi Passmore||Brent Sherman||Chris Moore|
|2005||Dawayne Bryan||David Ragan||Joey Miller||Steve Wallace||Tim Steele|
|2006||Steve Wallace||Blake Bjorkland||Scott Lagasse, Jr||Dexter Bean||Frank Kimmel|
|2007||Michael McDowell||Justin Marks||Colin Braun||Jeremy Clements||Erin Crocker|
|2008||Scott Lagasse, Jr.||Ricky Stenhouse, Jr.||Scott Speed||Justin Allgaier||Jesse Smith|
|2009||Justin Lofton||Grant Enfinger||Hal Martin||Brian Ickler||Frank Kimmel|
|2010||Patrick Sheltra||Steve Aprin||Grant Enfinger||Frank Kimmel||Craig Goess|
|2011||Ty Dillon||Chris Buescher||Josh Richards||Chad McCumbee||Andrew Ranger|
|2012||Kevin Swindell||Brennan Poole||Frank Kimmel||Chris Buescher||Ryan Reed|
|2013||Corey LaJoie||Josh Williams||Ryan Blaney||Will Kimmel||Chad Boat|
|2014||Mason Mitchell||Justin Boston||Matt Tifft||Will Kimmel||Cody Coughlin|
|LAP LEADERS||(LAPS/RACES LED)|
|Ricky Stenhouse, Jr.||67/1|
|Scott Lagasse, Jr||27/2|