Tom Hessert; Ken Schrader Racing Hot Entering Madison Showdown
Topics: Tom Hessert, Herr’s Live Life With Flavor 200, Ken Schrader Racing
OREGON, Wisconsin (August 24, 2011) - After a topsy-turvy first half of the 2011 ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards season, Tom Hessert III and his Ken Schrader Racing (KSR) team have really lifted their presence at the front of the pack which includes four top-fives and six top-10s in the last half of dozen races. With the tour reuniting with Madison International Speedway for Friday’s running of the Herr’s Live Life With Flavor 200, the team wouldn’t mind hoisting the checkered flag for the first time in nearly 40 years.
On the heels of a runner-up and season best finish last Sunday afternoon at the Illinois State Fairgrounds (Springfield), Hessert, driver of the No. 52 Federated Auto Parts Chevrolet Impala, the desire, will and “want” that the Cherry Hill, New Jersey native has been displaying signals that his second career victory is sitting on the horizon.
“I’ve been more than pleased with the way the team has really gelled over the last couple of months or so,” said Hessert. “I knew our No. 52 Federated Auto Parts Chevrolet was fast from the moment we unloaded at Springfield and that’s a benefit to any driver right off the bat. I know that John (Monsam) is well in-tuned for these last five races and I really feel we have a chance at winning between now and October.”
Even though Hessert has never been to the half-mile of Madison International Speedway, the former NASCAR Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series navigator, he knows that having a veteran leader like Monsam calling the shots; there isn’t much to worry about.
“I’m not worried about getting acquainted with Madison,” sounded Hessert. “John (Monsam) is one of the best in the business and I’ll take that to the bank. He’s been around racing more than I’ve been alive,” he continued jokingly. “His background on the short tracks is as thick as a dictionary but that’s a good thing. I know that he has a comfort for what he wants in the car and he knows what I like behind the wheel, so I’m confident that when our Federated Auto Parts Racing machine hits the track, we’ll be right where we want to be.”
Just five races remain before the curtain falls on the 2011 ARCA season. Entering Madison, Hessert has maneuvered five top-fives and 11 top-10s and has finished outside the top-10 only once since May. That’s comforting for anyone entering Friday night’s festivities.
“You know, I haven’t really looked at our stats lately, but that’s really impressive,” Hessert mentioned. “We were running good at Michigan (the only finish outside the top-10) too but endured some tough luck otherwise, we might be in a better position points wise. Right now though, we can’t worry about that. We’re just focused on keeping the No. 52 Federated Auto Parts Chevrolet upfront and contending.”
Currently locking the fifth position in the championship standings and sitting 210 points behind third and fourth place runners Chris Buescher and Grant Enfinger, Hessert knows that it might come down to the last lap at Toledo in October that will determine the final rundown in the point standings.
“Unfortunately, I think we’re out of the hunt for the championship title, but we still can get a piece of the top-three and maybe even second,” added the former USARacing Pro Cup Series star. “Anything can happen these next fives races and we’ll be prepared for that. If we have to use strategy to gain positions on the race track, we’ll do that. We did it at Pocono a few weeks ago and it paid off. I also know that it could the other way just as fast. As a driver though you can’t be worried about that, you just have to strap into that seat and give it all you have.”
Before making the hike to Wisconsin this week, Hessert had the opportunity to hang out with fellow driver and friend Grant Enfinger where the two represented the series Wednesday night at the Twenty Third Annual Motorsports Hall of Fame of America Induction Ceremony in Detroit.
“Man, what an honor and invitation that was from ARCA,” Hessert said. “I really enjoy the ARCA Racing Series and when I was asked to represent the series for an event of this magnitude. The drivers that attended the induction were some I considered idols throughout my racing career. I cannot thank ARCA enough for the invitation; it was something that you’ll remember for a very long time.”
The Herr’s Live Life With Flavor 200 (200 laps / 100 miles) is the 15th of 19 events on the 2011 ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards schedule. The fourth-ever ARCA event held at Madison International Speedway is a one-day show. Practice begins Friday, August 26 with an hour and a half practice session planned from 2:30 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. Menards Pole by Ansell qualifying is slated to begin at 5:30 p.m. An on-track autograph session has been etched into the schedule from 7:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. The field will take the green flag shortly after 8:30 p.m. that evening. The event will not be televised but race coverage including live timing and scoring throughout the 1,327th race for the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards since it was formed in 1953 will be available through the ARCA Racing Network (ARN) online at arcaracing.com presented by ARCANation.com. All times are local.
In addition to Federated Auto Parts, Cherry Hill Classic Cars will serve as an associate marketing partner for Hessert’s 79th career ARCA start. In his previous 78 outings, he has maneuvered one win, 17 top-fives and 41 top-10s.
For more on Tom Hessert III, please visit tomhessert.com.
NAME: Chris Knight, Knight Motorsports Management
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