SALEM, Ind. (April 16, 2018) -- Joe Graf Jr. brought his Chad Bryant Racing (CBR) Big Tine No. 77 Ford to the high banks of Salem Speedway last Friday to take part in a test for the Kentuckiana Ford Dealers 200, coming this Sunday, April 22. It will be Graf Jr.’s second start for CBR and the New Jersey native is feeling really good about his chances this weekend.
“The track was bad-ass,” said Graf. “To be honest it was so much fun to drive I couldn’t wait to get back in the car after every run. I talked extensively with my driver coach, Mike Bliss as well as Paul (Andrews) and Chad, prior to the test to learn as much as I could about Salem. There is no iRacing at Salem, so I watched as much video of prior races as I could to prepare for the test.”
The North Carolina based team ran about 100 laps to prepare for the ARCA Racing Series event in hopes of getting much-needed seat-time. At the end of the day the 2016 championship team left the track with great anticipation for the upcoming race.
"Joe was solid in the car,” said Crew Chief Paul Andrews. “He is making great progress every time he gets in the race car and I feel like he has a good shot at a top finish.”
Graf Jr. had a solid run in his recent ARCA debut at Nashville, running in the top-5 late in the race before he lost 4th gear. He soldiered home 16th. The soon to be freshman at NYU, battled the physically demanding short track with a broken foot which added to the stress of racing at Nashville.
“Yes, there is still some pain and it is not healed, but it is not as big an issue like it was at Nashville,” Graf said. “I am ready for this weekend. Our test gave me so much confidence for my new favorite track."
About Chad Bryant Racing
Chad Bryant purchased the assets of Cunningham Motorsports in the fall of 2017. Cunningham Motorsports built a winning reputation over the years, earning 40 ARCA Racing Series wins with 15 different drivers as well as the national championship in 2016 with Chase Briscoe driving. Bryant was Briscoe's crew chief over their championship run. Bryant gained a reputation for developing young drivers, and has now added well-respected, race team owner to his resume with NASCAR championship crew chief Paul Andrews assisting with team preparation and crew chief duties. Chad Bryant Racing currently fields a two-car team in the ARCA Racing Series.