Grant Enfinger; Allgaier Motorsports Close Out 2011 Season With Strong Effort
Topics: Grant Enfinger, Federated Car Care 200
TOLEDO, Ohio (October 18, 2011) - Despite going winless during the course of the 2011 ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards season, Grant Enfinger and his Springfield, Illinois-based Allgaier Motorsports team don’t have any reason to fret; as they capped off a competitive season of competition with another stout effort which ended with Sunday’s Menards 200 at Toledo Speedway.
The family-owned team elected to bring back the same No. 36 Hoosier Tire Midwest / racetires.com Dodge Charger that they recorded a second-place finish in the Spring event at the half-mile oval. Looking to finish what they started, the Kelly Kovski-led organization had high hopes for the season finale.
With the United States Auto Club (USAC) sharing Saturday with the ARCA Racing Series at Toledo Speedway, practice which was normally run as one session would now be combined into two forty minute-efforts. Mounting the second and first quickest laps in each practice respectively, the short track ace along with his team were looking forward to strutting their stuff in Menards pole qualifying presented by Ansell.
Despite not being able to maneuver his second pole of the season, Enfinger did log the third quickest lap which gained him five crucial points in the critical championship race. Somewhat content with their starting position, the team remained focused on the bigger goal at hand.
Unfortunately, teams returned to the ARCA-owned racetrack on Sunday under gloomy skies and consistent rain showers. Ultimately, the start of the contest would be pushed-back nearly two hours before the command to fire engines was given. ARCA would choose to utilize the 35-car starting field to finish the track drying process throwing both the green and yellow flags simultaneously for the first 40 circuits of the contest. With the yellow flag retracted and the green “officially” given to the field, Enfinger hovered inside the top-three waiting for the early stages of the race to settle in.
Within sights of leaders Ty Dillon and Tom Hessert, Enfinger joined the pack when they caught Milka Duno in lap traffic on lap 63. Enfinger was able to soar by Duno and Dillon moving into the runner-up spot. Two laps later though, still muffled in heavy traffic, Enfinger made slight contact with the No. 26 of Brad Smith which allowed Dillon an opportunity to pass the No. 36 Hoosier Tire Midwest / racetires.com Dodge Charger.
Settled in third, a caution waived just before lap 90, allowing Enfinger to bring his automobile to the attention of Kovski where the team changed tires and added fuel, electing to get out of sequence with the leaders – hoping it would pay off in the long run.
The lap 94 restart showed the Fairhope, Alabama native in the 18th position but quickly negotiating his way through the field. Climbing into the top-10 by lap 110, Enfinger proved that he had a car capable of running the multiple grooves around the racetrack.
When the leaders dished to pit road, Enfinger did the same offering the final stop of the afternoon with more tires and a splash of fuel. With the significant number of cars on the lead lap, Enfinger restarted the race deep in the pack in the 17th position.
With a determined attitude, Enfinger began charging his No. 36 Hoosier Tire Midwest / racetires.com Dodge Charger through the tough field once again finding himself knocking on the door of re-entering the top-10 by lap 132.
12 laps later, the mission had been accomplished with Enfinger officially being scored in the 10th position. That though wasn’t good enough for the short track standout as he continued to manhandle his way through the field. By lap 175 and a few cautions later, Enfinger had moved into seventh position.
On the bumper of the No. 32 of Ryan Wilson, the two would hash it out coming to the white flag, but as the two began racing for a spot inside the top-five, leaders Dillon and Brennan Poole collided. With the No. 25 of Poole stalled on the racetrack, Enfinger passed him bumping him up into the sixth position. Now set for a green-white-checkered finish, Enfinger knew that the opportunity to outsmart Wilson, a new recruit to the ARCA Racing Series was capable.
With the green and white flags waiving together, the two began hashing it out fighting for a spot inside the top-five.
As the two cars shoved their way out of turn four onto the frontstretch, Enfinger’s No. 36 Hoosier Tire Midwest / racetires.com Dodge Charger cleared the No. 32 by inches awarding the team with their seventh top-five of the year.
“It was a good day for Allgaier Motorsports,” said Enfinger. “We just didn’t have the car that could challenge for the lead like we did in the Spring, but we did have a strong piece. A couple times after pitting we were able to muscle our way from the back of the field to the front.”
He added, “That was a good battle on the last lap with Ryan (Wilson). He raced me hard but cleaned and it gave the fans something to watch coming to the checkered flag.”
With the team’s 14th top-10 finish of the year, Enfinger unofficially secured third place in the championship standings, the best championship effort for Allgaier Motorsports since notching the 2008 championship with driver Justin Allgaier. In all, the team tallied 19 starts, one pole, seven top-fives, 14 top-10s, 18 top-15 finishes. All season long, the team had just one effort outside the top-20 late in the season at Salem (Ind.) Speedway where a rear-end failure relegated a 22nd place run.
“We didn’t have a lot as far the sponsorship department went, but we still made it,” Enfinger explained. “This is a team with a lot of heart and desire. We had our share of ups and downs, but it was worth it. I’m so appreciative of the Allgaier family for the opportunity and hope that sponsorship can materialize, so that they can race in 2012.”
Next up for the ARCA Racing Series is the 2011 championship banquet which is set for Saturday, December 10th at the Northern Kentucky Convention Center in Covington, Ky., near Cincinnati. The top-20 drivers and top-10 owners and drivers will be recognized for their participation in the series this year.
For more on Grant Enfinger, please visit grantenfinger.com.
Additional input on Allgaier Motorsports is available by logging onto AllgaierMotorsports.com.
To learn more about Beasley-Allen Law Firm and its capabilities, please click onto beasleyallen.com.
NAME: Chris Knight, Knight Motorsports Management
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