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Josh Williams Inhales Daytona Experience; Forges Ahead For 2012

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Stock Car Racing Topics:  Josh Williams, Lucas Oil Slick Mist 200

Josh Williams Inhales Daytona Experience; Forges Ahead For 2012

Chris Knight
Knight Motorsports Management
Josh Williams Motorsports
February 21, 2012


Josh Williams
DAYTONA BEACH, Florida (February 21, 2012) - - Josh Williams ran as high as fifth in this past Saturday’s Lucas Oil Sick Mist 200 at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway but had to settle for 33rd in the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards opener.

Williams, driver of the No. 02 Southwest Florida Cable Construction Ford Fusion leaned into “The World Center of Racing” with optimism for his Josh Williams Motorsports (JWM) team after participating in the open-test session at the 2.5-mile superspeedway in December and with the guidance of crew chief Barry Owen, a former winning ARCA car owner at the Daytona Beach, Florida racetrack.

In the opening four-hour practice session, Williams posted the 23rd fastest time of the afternoon in an affair that saw 52 cars participate after negotiating his blue oval in 43.399 seconds at 182.190 miles per hour. The team admitted they had help in the draft, but they also made several single-car runs in preparation for qualifying on Friday afternoon.

When time trials rolled around on Friday afternoon, Williams maneuvered his family-owned automobile around the speed plant in 51.071 seconds or 176.225 miles per hour which was 37th quickest overall. The team had to patiently wait for nearly two hours before ARCA Racing Series officials released the starting grid which placed the team 41st in the 43-car starting field.

Knowing that racing on a restrictor plate track, a starting position isn’t really relevant as long as his No. 02 Southwest Florida Cable Construction Ford Fusion would draft. When the 18-year clocked the fourth fastest time in the “happy hour” practice session before the start of the season, the team’s morale received a much needed boost.

The 49th annual ARCA event at Daytona would take the green flag shortly after 4:30 p.m. with Williams quickly maneuvering through the pack and finding himself 34th in the running order. Several teams opted to make a pit stop when the first caution flag waived on lap seven for Milka Duno, but Owen decided to keep his young driver on the racetrack for track position. Restarting 11th, Owen would advance even further on the next restart a few laps later which found Williams in what was becoming a familiar place on the ARCA tour, near the front.

Continuing to stay on the racetrack, Williams would slide back to 16th by lap 23 and 20th by lap 30. By the half-way mark, Williams still had not made his mandatory pit stop. With a long-green flag run in toe, Owen had to bring his driver down pit road under green for fuel on lap 63. The untimely stop would hinder the rising sensation as he would lose his spot in the lead draft and ultimately fall two laps off the pace.

Out of contention, Williams remained focused, continued to learn the draft but soldiered on to take the checkered flag in his Daytona debut.

“We were hoping that the cautions would fall our way and it just didn’t pan out,” explained Williams. “It’s a gamble you take. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. Sure, we’re disappointed but we came to Daytona to learn and we did that. We experienced some highs and lows, but that’s just part of racing. The car’s in one piece and we can take it to Talladega where we plan to show everyone how much we really did learn.”

Next up for the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards in their 60th Anniversary season will be the first of two stops in the state of Alabama with the sanctions first ever visit to Mobile (Ala.) International Speedway for the running of the Mobile ARCA 200 on Saturday, March 10.

For more information on Josh Williams, his Josh Williams Motorsports team and sponsorship opportunities for the 2012 season please connect to the team’s official website at Joshwracing.com.

PHOTO CAPTION: Josh Williams, driver of the No. 02 Southwest Florida Cable Construction Ford Fusion in the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards for Josh Williams Motorsports (JWM).

TEAM COMMUNICATIONS CONTACT:

NAME: Chris Knight, Knight Motorsports Management
PHONE: 239.834.9797
EMAIL: chris@chrisknightpr.com

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