Salem, IN – The ARCA/CRA Super Series Powered by JEGS will be back in action this weekend, returning to Columbus Motor Speedway, located in Columbus, Ohio for the inaugural JEGS Bud St. Amant Memorial 174 Presented by CoughlinCars.com. The event will be 174 laps and will pay $5000 to win. The series was originally scheduled to have an event on June 28th, but that event was postponed until this Saturday because of persistent rain showers, the event then became the JEGS Bud St. Amant Memorial 174 Presented by CoughlinCars.com.
“Gary St. Amant had come to us wanting to have a race to honor his father Bud who passed away January 11th after battling cancer for seven years,” remarked Jeff Nuckles with Columbus Motor Speedway. “When the ARCA/CRA Super Series event on June 28th had to be postponed, it was just a natural fit to move the race to August 2nd and make it the event to honor Bud. Bud was a great man who was loved by the entire racing community, this will be a great way to honor his memory!”
The JEGS Bud St. Amant Memorial 174 Presented by CoughlinCars.com will be 174 laps, counting yellows the first 100, with the final 74 all green flag laps. There will be a 10 minute break at lap 100, teams will have the option to change up to two tires at the break, lead lap cars will then be relined up for the final 74 laps based upon how many tires they take at the break, zero tires, then one tire, then two tires. Team will also be allowed to make adjustments on their cars during the break.
The ARCA/CRA Super Series has now reached the halfway point of the 14 race 2014 season after last Friday’s Circle City 100 at Lucas Oil Raceway, that was won by NASCAR star Kyle Busch with a turn four coming to checkers pass of John Hunter Nemechek. Coming into Saturday’s race the top three in points are now just separated by seven points. Ross Kenseth, son of NASCAR Champion Matt Kenseth, is the current series point’s leader, but is still looking for his first win. Kenseth won the last series event that was held at Columbus on May 30th, 2011. Kenseth led the first 53 laps of last Friday’s race, but ended the night with an eighth place finish. His consistent top ten finishes have kept him in the points lead.
2013 series Champion Travis Braden has really picked up momentum with four straight top five finishes to move into second in points, only two points behind Kenseth. Braden’s crew chief this season is former ASA Champion Gary St. Amant. Braden will be looking to get his first win of the season at one of his former home tracks and for his crew chief.
Brian Campbell leads the series with two wins so far this season, but suffered two straight DNF’s before last Friday’s 11th place finish, which has now dropped him to third in points, but only seven points out of the lead. Campbell hopes to start his turn around for the second half of the season on Saturday night.
Besides the top three in points, other top series drivers entered for Saturday nights race include CRA veteran Rick Turner, last year’s Rookie of the Year Ali Kern, Nick Gullatta, Matt Hall, Beavercreek, Ohio’s Brandon Oakley and multi-time CRA winner Tommy St. John, as well as top Senneker Performance Rookie drivers Wes Griffith Jr., Paul Shafer Jr. and Canadian Brandon Watson.
There will be lots of local interest in this event with several local drivers entered including 2013 JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour Champion Cody Coughlin, a native of nearby Delaware. Coughlin is running a partial schedule with the ARCA Racing Series in 2014 and in selected CRA events. Coughlin will be competing Friday in the ARCA Racing Series event at Pocono Raceway, and then flying back to Columbus for Saturday night’s race.
Germantown, Ohio racer Kyle Jones is entered along with Enon’s Mike Stacy in the KMS Racing owned car out of Lewis Center. Edgerton, Ohio’s Jason Dietsch is entered, Dietsch picked up his first ever CRA win at Angola Motor Speedway on July 5th with the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour. Cincinnati veteran racer Jeep Pflum is also entered.
Two very talented drivers will be making the trip back on Saturday from the NASCAR K&N event at Iowa Speedway on Friday, Chad Finley, a two time winner with the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour at Columbus and 15 year old J.J. Haley, winner of the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour 2014 season opener at Springport Speedway are both entered for Saturday’s race.
JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour competitor, 16 year old Hunter Baize, will make his ARCA/CRA Super Series debut Saturday night, Baize won the JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour event at Columbus Motor Speedway on May 24th under the tutelage of Butch and Johnny VanDoorn.
There will be an open practice on Friday, pit gates open at 4pm with practice going from 5 to 8pm. On Saturday pit gates will open for the ARCA/CRA Super Series teams at 12:30pm. Practice will begin at 3pm with qualifying for the series at 6:15pm. The race program will begin at 7pm and will include the JEGS Bud St. Amant Memorial 174 Presented by CoughlinCars.com for the ARCA/CRA Super Series. Also racing on Saturday night will be the Columbus Late Models, Modifieds, Sport Stocks and Compacts.