Sunday, August 19, 2012
Levi Mansfield Getting the Hang of Winning, Takes Race Gear X 100 at Angola
FREMONT, Ind. -- Levi Mansfield made it two in a row by winning the Race Gear X.com 100 presented by Hutch’s Towing at the beautiful Angola Speedway in northeastern Indiana! It was the fifth top five finish for the Oakwood, Ohio resident on the season! Mansfield also took the last event in the night race at Kil-Kare in near 100 degree heat! This time around the temperatures at race time at about 9:00 PM were in the sixties, so it appears he’s becoming an ‘all-weather racer’? “Yah, I wish we could find something in the middle and that’d be just fine! But the truck was just unreal during the race and felt like it was on a rail! We struggled with it in practice and qualifying and decided as a group to pull it out of impound and make one last swing at it and try to figure something out and we hit on something and we knew about three laps into we were in really good shape!”
On lap one, Mansfield was ninth, and by lap 11 he was runner-up! Chad Poorman and Jon Kulpinski were on the front row and Poorman bolted into the lead at the onset. However, it didn’t take long before brake rotors were glowing red on most trucks on the tight, banked 3/8th’s mile oval and Mansfield got past Chad on lap 22. Pole winner Danny Jackson, who started ninth following the inversion, was also moving up, getting to third by the time Mansfield took the point, then the current leader went into second at lap 41. Poorman, who had those glowing red rotors, slowly began to fade, battling with Chris Bailey’s #17 C.A.
Bailey Excavating Chevy, the #99 of Steve Christman in the Double B Garage Chevy and the Chevy of Shawn Szep’s #81 THIKtees.com ride. Of the top five, all but the top two of Mansfield and Jackson had bright red brake parts, and before long, Poorman began showing signs of smoke due to a faulty wheel bearing and slowly began to drop through the field until pitting on lap 60. At first officials thought perhaps he had a fire underneath his ride and had fire extinguishers at the ready, but those concerns were unfounded and the #3 retired with a faulty right rear wheel bearing.
Up front, the margin between Mansfield and Jackson didn’t change much as the #54 Kirsch Automotive Chevy kept up about a three second margin. Behind them, however, Bailey, Christman, Szep, Quarrick and Huff waged a terrific battle for third. But there was no catching Mansfield, who flashed under the checkers after leading the last 79 laps for his second win in a caution free 100 laps.
“I was really hoping for a restart because I think I had something for Levi because you never know if a guy is showing his cards or not. But it took so long to come up through there that by the time I got up to second, Levi was pretty far out in front of me so I just tried to protect my spot so it was a good points night. My congratulations to them! I knew if Levi got good stuff he’d do all right and he’s got good people behind him,” stated runner-up Jackson of Batavia, Ohio.
“At about 30 lap, my brakes were to the floor and at the end I had none at all so it was definitely an issue. I’d like to thank Christman and Szep for racing me clean, it was a good race and kind of surprised it went caution free,” said third place Bailey.
“I’d really like to thank Ken Kirsch and Linda Kirsch for putting me in this seat,” explained the ARCA Truck Series newest multiple race winner. “We can definitely get used to this! My knowledge in these trucks is getting better on how they feel and how to set them up. And we’ve got great people and great help from Kyle Jones and Neil and them from the Dayton (Ohio) area, they’ve really helped come a long way this season! The season has a long way to go, and a lot of things can happen, we’ll ride this wave while it’s going and take it while it’s here because we live for this moment because the next race it could be gone!”
Speaking of next races, the ARCA Truck Series returns to Lorain County for the THIKtees.com 100 lapper which was weathered out from August 11th. Gunr4sr.com-iRacing qualifying takes place at 4:30 P.M. and the green flag waves at 7:40 P.M.!
RACE NOTES: Shane Meyers, in Paul Vanderhoff’s #45, was the first to drop out of the event because of a faulty battery; also starting a Vanderhoff Chevy was veteran Brad Yunker who was forced by the wayside in the #46 with brake issues; Randy Moyes finished ninth in his first start since Toledo in May
PRACTICE: Local veteran Steve Christman from nearby Ft. Wayne led practice with a time of 15.339 seconds, or 88.011 MPH. He was followed by Levi Mansfield at 15.341, Cody Quarrick in the #25 Qurrick Racing Ford at 15.373, another local favorite Chad Poorman at 15.377 and Danny Jackson with a time of 15.398 seconds; rounding out the rest of practice were Chris Bailey, Shawn Szep, Jon Kulpinski of nearby Montpelier, OH, Brandon Huff, Shane Meyers (making his debut in an ARCA Truck), Randy Moyes (driving the #20 owned by Ed Yoak) and Brad Yunker in Paul Vanderhoff's #46; Meyers unfortunately spun the times during the hour long session and Moyes also looped it with eight minutes left before the red flag; longtime race promoter Rocky Fisher was not in attendance at Angola as he was hospitalized recently. His daughter April took over and filled in admirably in his absence and on behalf of the ARCA Truck Series, our thoughtsand prayers go out to him for a speedy recovery!
QUALIFYING: Jackson did it again, winning his fifth Gunr4sr.com-IRacing Pole Award in six tries. He set the track record for the ARCA Truck Series with a lap at 15.084 but rolled a four and five on the dice and will invert to ninth starting position. Bailey (who won the pole in the series first try here in 2010 before rain cancelled the event, thus disallowing the time) was second. Rounding out the field was Mansfield, Szep, Christman, Quarrick, Poorman, Huff, Kulpinski, Moyes, Yunker g who currently owns the steak for longest consecutive starts dating back to August of 2009) and Shane Meyers, making his first start in Paul Vanderhoff's #45. "It’s not going to be easy from ninth, but this is a step in the right direction after our problems in the last race (Jackson was eliminated in an early race wreck). We are looking at the big picture in the points. I’ve got to thank Widow Wax, Hart's Machine, Red Bank Transport and anyone who turned a wrench in this thing, I really appreciate it!" With the invert, the local team of Todd Gearhart, sponsored by Gearhart Timber/B.A.C. Printing/Hutch's Towing Chevys, and driven by Jon Kulpinski and Chad Poorman, will start on the front row! Huff, Yunker and Mansfield made changes after qualifying, and since this event was an impound race, they would start 10th, 11th and 12th respectively.
The ARCA Truck Series completed its second full season presented by the Phoenix Management Group of Ohio, LLC, (or PMG) of Millersport, Ohio in 2011, under a licensing agreement with the Automobile Racing Club of America (ARCA). The ARCA Truck Series ran its first full season under ARCA’s direction in 1999, after evolving from the Pro-4 Series, which was sanctioned by ARCA for the previous nine years. Today, the series has grown into one of the most versatile series in short track racing, having taken popular four cylinder, V-6 & Ford V-8 crate powered trucks to asphalt tracks of many sizes under one mile, road courses, and numerous dirt tracks in its history.
Founded by John Marcum in 1953 in Toledo, Ohio, the Automobile Racing Club of America (ARCA) is recognized among the leading sanctioning bodies in the country. Closing in on completing its sixth decade after hundreds of thousands of miles of racing, ARCA administers over 100 race events each season in two professional touring series and local weekly events.
Following the ARCA Truck Series has become easier than ever lately! For in-depth stories, continually log on to ARCATruckRacing.com. For instant “ARCA Truck Series Right Now News Alerts” text messages, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and ask to be added to that list. You can now also follow the series on Twitter at @ARCATruckRacing, there is an “ARCA Truck Series” Facebook page, “ARCA Truck Racing” is on LinkedIn, and you can see race highlights on youtube.com at the ARCA Truck Series page at http://youtube.com/arcatrucks.