After turning in a strong qualifying effort that netted her 12th in the overall time trials, 17-year old Sunoco Rookie of Year candidate, Nicole Behar, felt her chances of a good finish in the season opening event for the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West two weeks ago in Bakersfield, Calif. were right on course. Upon returning to the pits her crew discovered that a brush with the wall on her second qualifying lap would need some attention.
It was decided to use the back-up car for the main event and save her primary car for this weekend’s King Taco Catering/NAPA Auto Parts 150 presented by Toyota at Irwindale Speedway. That decision proved to be valuable as the back up was collected in a late race incident that relegated Behar to 21st in the final running order. With Bakersfield in the rear-view mirror the focus is on Irwindale this weekend, she explained.
“We had a good car in Bakersfield and it even though it got some damage in the qualifying run, (crew chief) Travis (Sharpe) and the team got it fixed and also spent countless hours getting our back-up car ready for Irwindale. The first race of the year is in the books, there is nothing we can do about the results and we’re excited to show that we had the speed in our cars to compete and will do so again when we unload this weekend at Irwindale”
That speed showed in the march Behar made from 27th to 8th place in her first NASCAR start of the season before being collected in the late race incident, she noted.
“The best part of our program and having Travis onboard is knowing our race cars are equally prepared. We proved that in taking a back-up car that had no laps on it, had never been in race trim with the Ford Fusion body package and ran all the way towards the front of the field. That’s encouraging and shows that if we keep working hard in the shop, in our practice sessions and in the race the results will come. We had two top-10 finishes in three starts last season so we know that we’re capable of performing well in the series.”
Behar maintains steady goals for herself and the team with Irwindale just around the corner.
“Irwindale will be a fun track to race at. It has multiple grooves to run in and I believe our Custom Welding and Fabrication Ford Fusion will be fast again this weekend,” she said. “We’ll go after another strong qualifying effort and make sure we’re aware of who is around us in the race all night long to get a good finish. We’re out here to win the Sunoco Rookie of the Year award and earn a solid finish in the championship standings so this weekend is important for those goals as well.”
Fans can keep up with all of the latest news regarding Nicole Behar Racing at nicolebehar.com or on the team’s Facebook page, Nicole Behar Racing. Updates for the King Taco Catering/NAPA Auto Parts 150 presented by Toyota at Irwindale Speedway will be available at hometracks.nascar.com
ABOUT NICOLE BEHAR RACING:
Based in just outside of Spokane, Wash. in Otis Orchards, NBR is home to Northwest Modified Series, Tri-Track Super Late Model Series and NASCAR K&N Pro Series teams for 17-year old Nicole Behar. A student at East Valley High School, through a program known as Running Start, Behar is set to graduate in June. She has been enrolled at Eastern Washington University to further her education with plans to continue at the school full-time in the fall. Nicole is the daughter of Mike and Sherri Behar.
ABOUT CUSTOM WELDING & FABRICATION:
Focused on providing excellent customer service with superior quality in every welding and fabrication job, Custom Welding & Fabrication features state-of-the-art equipment with skilled personnel able to complete any task. Clients include Alliance Machine Systems and EZ Loader Trailers based in Spokane. The company also provides services to small business needs and individual projects.
– Nicole Behar Racing Media Relations Release
Photo Credit: Speed51.com