NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver Grant Enfinger returns to South Alabama Speedway for the first time in 10 years for the Rattler 250. It marks his second Super Late Model start in the last four months following the Snowball Derby, after having spent the previous four years out of the short track ranks while competing full-time in NASCAR.
While it may have come back in 2011, Enfinger’s most recent Rattler appearance ended with a second win in the event. He was a competitor in the former Viper Super Late Model Series held at South Alabama during the early days of his career.
“I’m not even sure if I’ve been to Opp since the last time I raced there in 2011 so it’s been quite a while. Opp’s one of those places I went to growing up and when I was running Super Late Models around the Southeast,” Enfinger told Speed51. “I’m definitely excited to get back there with Champion Power Equipment, Southern Pride Truck and Breland Homes.”
Enfinger is one of five drivers with multiple Rattler 250 wins, with his two triumphs coming in 2008 and 2011. He didn’t dominate either race, but he was there when it counted the most. His first win saw him take the lead from Wayne Anderson with just over 40 laps to go after the former Snowball Derby winner led 158 laps. Then in 2011, he inherited the lead with 25 to go after race leader Augie Grill was involved in an incident. Chase Elliott led the most laps that day, also leading 158 of them.
During his Super Late Model days, Enfinger always considered the Rattler to be one of his biggest races every year.
“They were definitely big. The Rattler’s one of those staples in the Super Late Model world. We always end the year with the Snowball Derby and start the year off with the Rattler. That was one we always had circled on the calendar when we were racing Super Late Models, it was pretty serious there. They’re one of my prouder Super Late Model moments. The Rattler brings out really good talent and good equipment and I’m sure this year will be no different.”
He joins Archie St. Hilaire and Go Fas Racing once again for this weekend. The pair finished eighth in the Snowball Derby last December in their first start together. While this is the last Super Late Model start planned for Enfinger as of right now, he hopes to change that before too long.
“There nothing else that’s planned right now but I hope that changes. I love racing Super Late Models and I haven’t done much of it the last four or five years. I think the Snowball was the first time I had been in a Late Model in probably four years. That’s not my choice, but hopefully I can keep myself in a Super Late Model seat.
“Archie St. Hilaire has really good equipment. That was our first outing at the Snowball and his first outing in the Super Late Model world in a while for him. We had a lot of fun so hopefully we can do it some more.”
Now with an established NASCAR career, a Rattler 250 win would take on a different meaning career-wise, but would mean just as much to him personally for the effort his team put into getting ready for the event.
“It would be huge for me personally but I think it would be big for my crew chief Michael Shelton and for Archie. They both put a lot of effort into this and really it’s a great opportunity to get behind the wheel and drive and have fun running a Super. I don’t know if it would mean anything from my career standpoint, but it would mean a lot to me personally. I put a lot of pride into these races and Archie and Shelton especially have put a lot of effort into this and it would be a good payment to them. Hopefully we’re able to do just that.”
Multiple viewing options will be available for the Rattler 250 on March 12-14. Premium subscribers can watch the event free with their subscription, while a PPV ticket will also be available. Click here for more information.
-Story by: Koty Geyer, Speed51 National Correspondent – Twitter: @kgeyer3
-Photo Credit: Speed51 Photo