Obstacles Don’t Keep Dexter Bean From Top-10 In Pocono
Topics: Dexter Bean, Pennsylvania 200
August 6, 2007
POCONO, Pennsylvania (Monday, August 6, 2007) - - It wasn’t exactly the finish that ARCA RE/MAX Series driver Dexter Bean was looking for, but a top-10 finish is a top-10 finish. After experiencing a series of mechanical hiccups during the weekend, Bean still persevered and collected a seventh place finish in Saturday’s Pennsylvania 200.
Bean, a sophomore driver on the ARCA tour returned to Pocono Raceway looking to equal or better his June performance. By the signs of practice, it appeared everything was leaning towards that goal becoming a reality.
In the lone practice session of the weekend, Bean racked in the fifth fastest time.
“Our Five Star Telecom Chevrolet Monte Carlo is in great shape,” said Bean, after practice. We didn’t make a qualifying attempt, so we still have a lot on the table. I’m really looking forward to qualifying.”
Gunning for his second career ARCA SIM Factory pole Friday afternoon, Dexter Bean climbed into his machine remaining focused on the job at hand.
Rolling out 11th on the qualifying order, Bean drove his No. 6 Five Star Telecom Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS onto the 2.5-mile triangle gearing up for his only lap of qualifying, but Bean quickly radioed to his crew that his motor was skipping and he was bringing the car back to pit road.
After inspecting the machine, the team checked a few wires hoping they had solved the apparent miss. Crew chief Chris Bires called to his driver Dexter Bean and told him to try and make another qualifying run. Unfortunately, Bean radioed to the team again on the backstretch that the problem had not been fixed and he was taking his car to the garage.
With the team on the five minute clock, they were unable to successfully solve the problem within the time limit granted forcing a DNS (Did Not Start). Instead of potentially starting in the top-five, the team was 33rd on the starting grid, the first provisional.
“What happened to us in qualifying is disappointing when I know my car can qualify strong,” said the Westby, Wisconsin native. “I’m just thankful it happened during qualifying and not the race.”
When the team checked in on Saturday, they reviewed their work on the kill switch, while also further inspecting the car. After battling some overflowing issues in practice, the group found a problem with a radiator hose prompting them to make another change to their BlackJack Racing machine before the start of the event.
Making adjustments during an impound weekend meant the team would be forced to start the 14th ARCA race of the season shotgun on the field.
Crew chief Chris Bires offered to use the starting position change to his advantage by bringing the NASCAR bound driver to pit road to top off his machine with fuel.
At the start of the Pennsylvania 200, Bean thundered through a pack, picking off 10 positions on the initial start before grasping himself into race mode.
When the first caution flag of the day waived on lap five when Justin South lost a motor, Bean had advanced 23 positions from the start. Despite just a handful of laps complete, Bean knew he had a strong car.
On the restart, Bean once again made a surging charge. Continuing to dig deep, Bean had begun putting the pressure on the lead group when the caution flag waived on lap 11 for Justin Marks.
Still content, Bean wanted more. On the restart, the urgency continued and by lap 25, Bean has worked his way into the sixth position.
While racing competitively inside the top-10, Bean would make his only scheduled pit stop just after halfway.
On the march to bring his Five Star Telecom Chevrolet Monte Carlo back into competition, Bean would use patience and guidance from spotter Tony Bagstad to work his way through the tight and competitive field.
A huge multi-car crash occurred on lap 56. The accident occurred several cars ahead of the upcoming driver sending the No. 6 onto the grass to avoid the melee. Bean’s car then spun coming back on the track.
Luckily, Bean reported no major damage but the possibility of having a flat tire. The crew inspected the car from pit road and informed their driver he was good to go.
Cautions would plague the BlackJack Racing team for much of the second half of the event, but the yellow flags weren’t the only issue the team was facing.
Bean reported that his Chevrolet had become tight and his machine began to push out water again. The team had pitted earlier in the race, dumping huge loads of cold water into the radiator hoping to solve the problem, it came back.
The obstacles would try to hinder Bean, but he vowed to overcome the challenges he faced and when the checkered flag flew, he crossed the line seventh, netting his sixth top-10 finish of the season, a new record for the Wisconsin native.
“I can’t complain about the finish after everything we faced, but I really would have liked to have finished in the top-five,” said Bean. “We had some problems with overheating in the engine and the car got tight the more we ran. We were really lucky we avoided the accident in the tunnel turn, it could have really destroyed our day, but we battled back and captured a top-10 run. Hopefully we can continue the trend next week in Nashville .”
With his third top-10 finish in four Pocono starts, Bean also moved up to third in the championship standings, just 155 markers from point’s leader Frank Kimmel who had a disappointing run on Saturday. Bean is 135 markers from second place competitor Michael McDowell.
“I hate to gain a position in the standings like we did on Saturday with Bobby (Gerhart) misfortune. Frank (Kimmel) also had some trouble, so we were able to gain some ground there too. We made some huge gains in the standings this weekend and that’s important, but we have our work cut out for us if we are going to try and win this thing. I want to thank my guys for all their hard work and never give up attitude. Their help and confidence helped us propel to our strong run this weekend.”
Next up for the ARCA RE/MAX Series is the 15th event on the 2007 schedule with a return trip to Music City at Nashville Superspeedway in Lebanon , Tennessee . The TOYOTA ARCA 150 is scheduled for Saturday, August 11 set to roll off live on the SPEED channel at 3:30pm Eastern Time.
In April, Bean scored his first top-10 finish of the season in the Nashville ARCA 150 after battling to a ninth place run including out dueling eight time ARCA RE/MAX Series champion Frank Kimmel on the last lap.
For more on Dexter Bean and BlackJack Racing, please visit DexterBean.net
NAME: Chris Knight, BlackJack Racing
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