Rookie Christian Eckes lookin' up; extends partnership with VMS through 2018

Rookie Christian Eckes lookin' up; extends partnership with VMS through 2018

CONCORD, N.C. (July 20, 2017) – Venturini Motorsports (VMS) and 16-year-old driver Christian Eckes are proud to announce the extension of their partnership through the 2018 ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards season.

Eckes, of Middletown, N.Y., has been a cornerstone of Venturini Motorsports’ Toyota Development Driver lineup since joining the team at the age of 15. His career development will continue over the course of 15-races during the 2018 season. Specific race details will be announced once the official ARCA schedule is released later in the year.

“I’m excited to share this news today," said Eckes. "I’ve found a good home here in the ARCA Series with a great team. The level of competition in series the last couple of years has been awesome. It’s a good fit for me at this stage in my career. I really feel I’m at the right place at the right time.Christian Eckes Car Shot Salem 2017

“It’s especially nice knowing next year’s plan so early. It allows me to concentrate my efforts 100 percent on racing. The support I’ve received from my sponsors, Venturini Motorsports and everyone at Toyota Racing is just incredible…I’m so thankful. I’m really proud to be a part of all this."

Eckes is recognized within the Toyota Racing Development family under the TD2 program, featuring the talented teen as part of their official Toyota Development Driver lineup.

“Saying I’m proud and excited to welcome Christian back into the fold for next season is an absolute understatement,” said Billy Venturini, co-owner and competition director at Venturini Motorsports. “He walked into the shop last year with a fresh face and immediately went to work. In a short amount of time he’s done his part on and off the track to stand out among a crowded group of young drivers in the ARCA garage. He is a genuine kid and everyone on the team loves working with him. I see a ton of potential. Christian is one of those special drivers that comes along with a high ceiling and will continue to get better and ultimately move onto the next level.”

Despite only competing in a limited ARCA schedule over the last two seasons, Eckes, with 10 career starts under the Venturini Motorsports banner, has joined the conversation as one of the series’ top young rookies, evolving into a legitimate contender each and every week.

So far this season, in the midst of an abbreviated nine-race schedule driving the No. 15 New York Bus Sales Toyota Camry, the high school honor student has strung together six-consecutive top-10 finishes in as many races. Highlighted with a career-best runner-up finish at Elko Speedway, Eckes has earned three top-5s and is atop the series leader board with 272 laps-led overall.

Eckes, with three-races remaining on his 2017 ARCA Series schedule, will make his next appearance tomorrow night at Lucas Oil Raceway. After Indianapolis he will rejoin the team at Winchester Speedway August 6 and complete his year at Salem Speedway September 9.

Follow Christian Eckes on social media by visiting @ChristianEckes on Twitter and Instagram, @ChristianEckesRacing on Facebook or visit his official website at


Venturini Motorsports (VMS), fielding cars for over 30-years in the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards, is one of the premier NASCAR driver development programs in the country. Multiple team championships and consistent on-track success, VMS has evolved into one of the most recognizable names in motorsports. Since 2007, VMS has assisted in the career development of notable NASCAR drivers such as Joey Logano, Erik Jones, William Byron, Justin Allgaier, Alex Bowman, Ryan Blaney, Brennan Poole, Daniel Suarez, and Brandon Jones. Over the years the Venturini name has become synonymous with modern-day racing in America. In 2012, the Venturini family was inducted into the National Italian American Sports Hall of Fame ( and now find themselves enshrined with such sports icons as Joe DiMaggio, Mario Andretti, Vince Lombardi, Tommy Lasorda and Rocky Marciano.

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