Crocker Quickest in ARCA RE/MAX Series "Channel 5 150" Qualifying at Kentucky Speedway
Twenty-four-year-old Erin Crocker will be the second woman to start a Kentucky Speedway race from the pole position when she takes the green flag for the ARCA RE/MAX Series "Channel 5 150" tonight at 8:00 p.m.
The Evernham Motorsports development driver posted the second fastest series qualifying lap at the speedway with a quick lap of 173.723 mph. She outdistanced her nearest competitor, Chad Blount, by 2.837 mph. Blount started the series May 14 event at the speedway on the pole after turning his best lap at 172.883 mph.
"I have a great team and a great car, Ray Evernham and all the guys on the team give me great equipment and that's the biggest part. I hope to drive it as best I can," Crocker said.
The Wilbraham, Mass., native will start from the pole for the second time in three ARCA RE/MAX Series events this season. She earned her first pole at Nashville Superspeedway on March 26, led the first 28 laps of the race and finished 12th. She started her second series race seventh at Michigan International Speedway on June 17 and finished seventh.
She expects similar results tonight in just her third career stock car series start.
"I very excited to have another good qualifying run and now I'm a looking for a good finish in the race," she said. "We finished 12th in the first one and seventh in the second, so hopefully tonight we'll finish right up front."
Crocker led the second series practice this afternoon with a fast lap of 171.331 mph and was second in series' morning practice with a lap of 167.126 mph. She said her No. 98 Auto Value Bumper to Bumper Dodge is race ready after practicing in steamy conditions. "The track temperature should go down a little bit and that should only help us," she said. "I feel pretty confident with the car."
She also displayed confidence in her spotter, team owner Ray Evernham.
"Ray has seen quite a few races in his day and found Victory Lane quite a bit," she said. "It's difficult having the boss on the radio. If I do something wrong, he's right there to yell at me, but, no, I'm really excited. It means a lot to me that Ray would skip Cup qualifying and come here to watch me race and be my spotter."
David Keith set the series qualifying record at the track with 175.262-mph effort on July 2, 2000. Sarah Fisher became the first woman to capture a pole position at Kentucky Speedway on August 10, 2002 when she turned a 221.390-mph lap during qualifying for the Indy Racing League IndyCar Series "Belterra Casino Indy 300."
Joey Miller qualified third in the No. 9 Country Joe Racing-Eagle Creek Aviation Dodge with a fast lap of 169.950 mph (31.774 seconds) and David Ragan rounds out the second row after turning his best qualifying lap at 168.840 mph (31.983 seconds).
Tickets for "The Channel 5 150" are still available and can be purchased at the main speedway entrance at Gates 15 and 16 up to race time.
~ Kentucky Speedway ~