Jul 10 ARCA Racing Series Review: Iowa Speedway
MOORSVILLE, N.C. (July 10, 2017) – Saturday’s Fans With Benefits 150 marked the halfway point of the 2017 ARCA Racing Series (ARS) Presented by Menards season. MDM Motorsports fielded entries for Sheldon Creed and Vinnie Miller in the 150-lap event at the 7/8-mile Iowa Speedway located in Newton, Iowa.
In the first half of the season, MDM Motorsports tallied three ARS victories. NASCAR Camping World Truck Series regular Justin Haley scored a dramatic win in the General Tire 200 at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway on May 6; Harrison Burton scored a win in the Menards 200 at Toledo (Ohio) Speedway on May 21; and NASCAR XFINITY Series driver Brandon Jones was victorious in the Corrigan Oil 200 at Michigan International Speedway on June 16.
In practice both Creed and Miller were solidly in the top-10. Creed, a two-time Speed Energy Stadium Super Truck Champion, qualified 13th and his teammate, Miller, qualified second, his second straight front row starting spot in ARS competition. When the race began, both drivers settled into a rhythm, looking to log laps and gain valuable seat time. Creed, fighting a lack of overall grip, elected to pit during an early caution. He restarted mid-pack and was able to drive back inside the top-five to eventually take the lead on lap 64. The Alpine, Calif., native was able to lead a handful of laps in the No. 12 United Rentals Toyota. As strategy began to play out, Creed fell back. Miller elected to stop on a later caution. He was mired deep in traffic and it took several laps for him to gain his track position back. As the laps clicked by it appeared that Creed’s car began to equal drivers on fresher tires. He maintained a top-five position for the last several laps. On the last restart, he was able to battle his way up to third. It was his first career ARS top-five finish. Miller spent the second half of the race regaining track position he lost. He drove from 14th to sixth. With about 10 laps left in the Fans With Benefits 150, he received the Lucky Dog. The Michigan driver went on to finish an ARS career-best sixth.
Sheldon Creed, driver of the United Rentals No. 12… Creed, a six-time winner this season in the Speed Energy Stadium Super Truck Series, returned to the seat of the No. 12 United Rentals Davey Allison ARCA Throwback Toyota at Iowa Speedway. He scored a ARS season-best finish of sixth in the Music City 200 on April 8 at Fairgrounds Speedway Nashville located in Nashville, Tennessee. He was sixth quick in the only official ARS practice and qualified 13th. He was able to lead a handful of laps before finishing third.
Creed on Iowa: “Iowa is a really fun race track,” Creed said. “I really do enjoy the bigger tracks this series runs but Iowa is a track I really enjoy. It isn’t a small race track by any means but races like a short track. It’s a pretty difficult track. When we got out front, my car was so good. That clean air made a big difference. We were bad in traffic but just not quite where I wanted to be. These MDM guys worked so hard this weekend. If I wouldn’t have spun the tires at the end, I might have had a shot at it. Overall, we can’t hang our heads. It was a good weekend for us.”
Vinnie Miller, driver of the Master Mfg. Inc. No. 41…. Entering the Fans With Benefits 150, Miller had scored five straight top-10s between the ARS and the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East. Last time out in the Corrigan Oil 200 at Michigan International Speedway, Miller made contact with another competitor racing for the race lead and wrecked. He was still able to finish 10th. Miller was seventh quick in ARS practice on Saturday morning. He qualified second, his second straight runner-up qualifying effort. Miller ran near the top-five through the first handful of laps. He pitted and was mired back in the pack midway through the 150-lap race and worked his way up to 6th before a caution with just a few laps remaining came out. Miller was the Lucky Dog and got the lap back he lost on that long green-flag run. He finished sixth, after a great battle with a fellow driver for the fifth spot.
Miller on Iowa: “We had a really good car and this place is a blast,” Miller said. “Everyone that said this place was a ‘racey’ race track was right. Despite losing track position during the midway point of that race, we were able to battle back for another solid finish. It’s really not a bad thing if you’re a little disappointed in a sixth-place finish. Our top-fives and chances to win races is coming. I’m having a blast right now racing and I couldn’t ask for a better situation.”
For more information about MDM Motorsports, please visit www.MDMMotorsports.com.