Phelps Leads Way in Kentucky Test From ARCA PR
Hawkins Comes Back From Contact to Run Second
Suwanee, Georgia rookie Michael Phelps, in the no. 45 Bowen Family Homes-Cunningham Motorsports Dodge, unofficially posted the quickest speed in ARCA RE/MAX Series open testing Tuesday at Kentucky Speedway.
The test, during which 20 drivers participated, was in preparation for the upcoming Kentucky ARCA RE/MAX 150 Friday night, July 18th LIVE on SPEED at 8:00 PM ET.

Phelps unofficially circled the 1.5-mile superspeedway in 30.680 seconds, for an average speed of  176.010 mph.

Cunningham Motorsports recently announced an alliance with Penske Racing under which Cunningham Motorsports would serve as Penske's official ARCA RE/MAX Series development team.

Matt Hawkins, who won at Iowa Speedway in his career-first series start back in April, was second quickest overall at 175.382 mph. Hawkins also made contact with the turn two wall earlier in the day. The Canton, Georgia driver was not injured.
Tayler Malsam, Phelps's teammate under the Cunningham Motorsports banner, was third quickest overall at 175.041 mph. Malsam, currently eighth in national championship points headed to Kentucky, hails from Seattle, Washington.

Alli Owens, driver of the Chevrolet, was fourth quickest overall at 174.081 mph. Owens, one of four female drivers who tested Tuesday, is running a partial schedule in 2008 for team owner Mario Gosselin.

Other female drivers who competed in the open test included Chrissy Wallace, daughter of NASCAR/ARCA veteran Mike Wallace, and Angela and Amber Cope, nieces of NASCAR veteran Derrick Cope.

Pelham, New Hampshire's Sean Caisse, in Shigeaki Hattori's Aisin AW Toyota, was fifth quickest overall at 173.801 mph.

In addition to Hawkins, three other drivers made contact with the wall during the open test including Brian Scott, Todd Hansen and Owens. There were no injuries.

The list of former ARCA RE/MAX Series winners list at Kentucky is impressive to say the least. It includes four-time Kentucky winner Kimmel, Stenhouse, Jr., Michael McDowell, Erik Darnell, Tim Steele, Ryan Newman, Chad Blount, Kyle Busch, Ryan Hemphill, Steve Wallace and Brad Coleman.

Practice for the Kentucky ARCA RE/MAX 150 will be Friday, July 18th from 11:30 AM to 1:45 PM followed by SIM Factory Pole Qualifying at 4:30 PM. The Kentucky 150 is LIVE on SPEED at 8:00 PM Friday night. 

Tickets are on sale now and can be reserved online through the track's official Web site,, by phone at 888-652-RACE (7223), through Meijer stores and by visiting the Kentucky Speedway ticket offices at 400 Buttermilk Pike, Suite 100, in Ft. Mitchell, Ky., and the track's Sparta, Ky., Fan Center located off of Interstate 71, Exit 57 and Ky. Hwy. 35 N.  

ARCA RE/MAX Series Open Test      
Kentucky Speedway, Sparta KY, 7-1-08      
Unofficial Results      

1 45 Michael Phelps/Suwanee GA Dodge-Bowen Family Homes Dodge 30.680 176.010
2 39 Matt Hawkins/Canton GA JaniKing-Racing Radios Dodge 30.790 175.382
3 4 Tayler Malsam/Seattle WA Dodge Driver Development Dodge 30.850 175.041
4 12 Alli Owens/Daytona Beach FL Chevrolet 31.020 174.081
5 01b Sean Caisse/Pelham NH Aisin AW Toyota 31.070 173.801
6 25 Brian Scott/Mooresville NC Venturini Motorsports Chevrolet 31.090 173.861
7 01a Chrissy Wallace/St. Louis MO Aisin AW Toyota 31.120 173.522
8 44 Frank Kimmel/Clarksville IN Ford Drive One-ECC Ford 31.160 173.299
9 15 Brian Scott/Mooresville NC Venturini Motorsports Chevrolet 31.210 173.021
10 1 Tom Hessert III/Cherry Hill NJ Maaco Auto Painting America's Body Shop Ford 31.210 173.021
11 68 Angela Cope/Puyallup WA Dodge 31.400 171.975
12 68 Amber Cope/Puyallup WA Dodge 31.430 171.810
13 77 Todd Hansen/Farmington MN Mad Croc Energy Drink-JDRF Chevrolet 31.610 170.832
14 74 JR Heffner Chevrolet 31.870 168.428
15 32 Matt Merrell Win Tron Racing-Red Line Oil Dodge 32.270 167.338
16 81 Randy Baker Chevrolet 33.120 163.043
17 87 Chris Cockrum/Conyers GA Chevrolet 33.210 162.602
18 33 Curt Tori/Wilmington DE Eastern Industrial Services Chevrolet 33.560 160.906
19 7 Jimmy Nowell Chevrolet 33.620 160.619
20 81 Sean Corr Chevrolet 33.830 159.622

The #4 car with Tayler Malsam at the wheel was third quickest.  (ARCA Photo)