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Jul 22, 2015 - 06:10 AM
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Rookie Sensation Kyle Weatherman To Make Superspeedway Debut At Pocono In Modspace ARCA 125
Posted by: newsla on Jul 22, 2015 - 06:10 AM
Rookie Sensation Kyle Weatherman To Make Superspeedway Debut At Pocono In Modspace ARCA 125

No matter the year, there never seems to be a shortage of great storylines among the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards ranks. One such example in 2015 has been the performance of Roush Fenway Racing development driver Kyle Weatherman, who drives the No. 22 car, fielded by Cunningham Motorsports.

Weatherman has been impressive for several reasons...winning at New Jersey Motorsports Park in his career-first road course attempt ranks right up there. In seven starts this year, he's not finished outside the top-five, and that includes two runner-up runs at Salem Speedway and most recently at Iowa Speedway where he led right down to the last lap. If that's not enough, he's earned two Menards Pole Awards presented by Ansell at Nashville and Iowa and currently leads the Calypso Lemonades Short Track Challenge standings.

That said, it's probably safe to say that many eyes will zero-in on Weatherman when the 17-year-old driver makes his superspeedway debut in the ModSpace ARCA 125 at Pocono Raceway Saturday, August 1.

"I'm looking forward to it; that's for sure," Weatherman said. "I've got a few laps around there so I feel like I'm ahead of it that much."

Indeed Weatherman tested at Pocono in early June, shaking down a car for Trevor Bayne, who was also new to the unique triangular layout. Unfortunately, Weatherman shook the car too hard and crashed in the Tunnel Turn.

"That was a very tough time for me...I really struggled with that one. But, I also learned from my mistake. I know what I did wrong...we'll leave it at that."

There was more good news to come from the mishap. The Cunningham Motorsports crew, led by NASCAR champion crew chief Paul Andrews, unloaded a back-up car that Bayne drove to Victory Lane two days later. It will be in that same car that Weatherman will be aboard for Pocono.

"It's one of the harder racetracks that I've ever raced on. I thought I adapted pretty quick, but I think it's difficult in general. It lives up to its name...the Tricky Triangle.

"All three corners are different, which I find very unique. I've heard people talk about parts of the track that have sort of a short track feel. I don't get that feeling...it's all superspeedway to me. It's a hard place to get around. Turn one has some banking and the Tunnel Turn is a flat, short corner, but really fast. The Tunnel Turn is more of an exercise in depth perception, more than anything. Then the last corner is long and flat. Getting your racecar to handle at Pocono is so important because you're dealing with so many variables.

"We know the team can get the job done...we know the car can get it done...I just need to figure out my part. I'll keep talking to as many drivers as I can. I run stuff through Chris Buescher all the time. I know he ran well there...I'll see what he's got...get his thoughts."

The ModSpace 125 marks the 61st ARCA race on the Pocono triangle since 1983. The list of winners over the years is impressive. In addition to Bob Schacht, who won the inaugural event and five more thereafter, Pocono ARCA winners include Tim Steele, Mike Wallace, Blaise Alexander, Kerry Earnhardt, Ryan Newman, Casey Atwood, Casey Mears, Scott Riggs, Frank Kimmel, Travis Kvapil, Justin Allgaier, Joey Logano, Ty Dillon, Chase Elliott, Kyle Larson, and most recently, Trevor Bayne back in early June.

Practice for the ModSpace 125 is from 12:30 p.m. to 1:55 Friday afternoon, with Menards Pole Qualifying presented by Ansell following at 6. The Saturday afternoon ModSpace 125 is live on FOX Sports 2 at 3 p.m. local time. All on-track activity will be featured in live Timing & Scoring at arcaracing.com, with live chat.

The ModSpace 125 is also part of a triple-header race card at Pocono, featuring the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Pocono Mountains 150, which precedes the ARCA race Saturday afternoon, and the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Pennsylvania 400 grand finale Sunday afternoon.

Tickets are on sale now at PoconoRaceway.com.

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