60+ Drivers Set to Hit The High Banks
More than 60 drivers are tentatively registered to participate in the ARCA RE/MAX Series open-test this Friday, Saturday and Sunday at Daytona Int’l Speedway in preparation for the season-opening 44th annual Daytona ARCA 200 on February 10, a prelude to this year’s NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Budweiser Shootout All-Star Race.
Four-time Daytona winner Bobby Gerhart, who recently announced he would be returning to the RE/MAX Series tour in 2007 to compete for the championship, leads the way with a fleet of Chevy Monte Carlos en route.

Gerhart also announced he was taking six cars to the open test for five drivers. The drivers he named that will be testing under the Bobby Gerhart Racing banner include AJ Henriksen, 2006 NASCAR Grand National West champion Eric Holmes, Ohio late model racer Tony Marks and Brad Coleman. Coleman, the ARS winner at Kentucky Speedway over the summer, has recently been signed to a contract with Joe Gibbs Racing to compete in the Busch Series in 2007.

Gerhart, entering his 20th season of ARCA competition in 2007, also announced that Lucas Oil would return as title sponsor for 12 events. Gerhart also said the team would be soon announcing another sponsor that would serve as title sponsor for six events and associate sponsor for the entire tour. Gerhart will make that announcement at the Motorsports Race Car Show 2007 at the Atlantic City, New Jersey Convention Center January 12 through 14 where two of his Chevy Monte Carlos, each sporting a different sponsor, will be on display. One car will be in the Lucas Oil booth, and the other in the Pocono booth.
Bobby Gerhart hopes that a good Daytona test is the first step to another Daytona victory.
This weekend’s on-track activity marks the beginning of the 2007 ARCA RE/MAX Series race season, which consists of 23 events in twelve states. In addition to Gerhart, Frank Kimmel, Steve Wallace, Billy Venturini, Erin Crocker, Josh Wise, Mario Gosselin and Matt Hagans are among those scheduled to turn laps around the 2.5-mile paved oval during the three-day test session.

Wise, the 2006 USAC National Sprint Car Series champion, is expected to test a Toyota Camry under the Eddie Sharp Racing/Michael Waltrip Racing banner.

ARCA/Daytona Connection More Than 40 Years Strong

The ARCA RE/MAX Series made it’s first appearance at Daytona International Speedway in 1964, signaling a major stepping stone to national recognition for the series, which was founded in 1953 as the Midwest Association for Race Cars. The format of the initial ARCA race at Daytona was patterned after NASCAR’s Daytona 500, with a pair of 50-lap qualifying races to determine the inside and outside rows of the main event, which was shortened to 250-laps for the ARCA RE/MAX Series race.

The race marked ARCA’s first ever superspeedway event, and the starting field included such recognizable names as Jack Bowsher, Ramo Stott, Danny Byrd, Nelson Stacy, Paul Clark, Jim Cushman, Ernie Derr, Eddie Myers, H.B. Bailey, Iggy Katona, Jack Shanklin, Paul Parks and race winner Earl Balmer.

Crocker, Theriault, Among Those Testing

Wilbraham, Massachusetts’s Erin Crocker and Bristol,
Connecticut’s Michelle Theriault are among those
scheduled to participate in this weekend’s ARCA
RE/MAX Series test session. While Theriault is new to
the ARCA RE/MAX Series, Crocker is a very familiar
face. Driving under the Evernham Racing banner,
Crocker has three career Pork Pole awards in ARCA
RE/MAX Series competition. In addition, the 24-year-old
driver has a pair of second place finishes, tying her with
Shawna Robinson as the highest-finishing females in
ARCA RE/MAX Series history.

Tentative Daytona Test Entries

1Bill Catania
1Mark Swan
1Ted Olswfski
1John Graham
2Michael McDowell
3Jeremy Clements
4Tim Andrews
5Bobby Gerhart
6Dexter Bean
7AJ Henriksen
9Matt Hagans
11Bryan Silas
12Mario Gosselin
14Michael Faulk
19Kevin Wood
22Josh Wise
25Billy Venturini
27Dicky Williamson
29Brian Keselowski
30Terry Jones
34Darrell Basham
35Chuck Barnes, Jr.
37Michelle Theriault
37Damon Lusk
38Mike Harmon
46Frank Kimmel
48Roger Carter
50Chase Pistone
51Brandon Whitt
59Justin South
61Steve Wallace
64Josh Allison
65Justin Marks
66Tony Ave
72JR Heffner
74Josh Krug
75Billy Tanner
79Mike Koch
85Greg Barnhart
87Skip Cummins
89Chuck Maitlen
89Juan Penaruiz
95Benny Chastain
98Erin Crocker
00Ed Kennedy
05Ian Henderson
07Jason Basham
Tony Marks
Brent Cross
David Green
Chris Cockrum
Patrick Sheltra
Gerry Bruce
Brian Weber
George Brunnhoelzl
Butch Jarvis
James Roberson
Brent Raymer
Leilani Munter
Joey McCarthy
Scott Lagasse, Jr.

Erin Crocker