A return to Anderson Speedway for a third race in 2020 is allowing some drivers to get extra laps around the quarter-mile bullring. For others, it is an opportunity to get to the track for the first time to compete with the best the ARCA/CRA Super Series has to offer.
Dennis Prunty had the spring race on his radar before it was moved due to the COVID-19 pandemic. With the series adding a race for this weekend, the former Slinger Nationals champion won’t let this opportunity go to the wayside.
This will be the Wisconsin driver’s third appearance at Anderson Speedway and first since 2016. In two previous starts, he has a seventh and a fourth to show for it. While Prunty doesn’t get to Anderson too often, he looks forward to getting there anytime he can.
“I was supposed to race Anderson earlier this year, but it got pushed out and I wasn’t able to make it. That’s one of my favorite tracks even though I’ve had some rough finishes there with the car getting banged up,” Prunty told Speed51. “It’s one of those tracks that’s hard to come out clean but I think I have a good shot at winning a race at Anderson, so I’m going to give it a shot.”
Prunty and his team will have a later start than his fellow competitors this weekend, as they will be absent from the open practice session teams will have Friday afternoon. They will only have one hour on Saturday to get ready for qualifying and the 125-lap feature.
“All of us have to work and we can’t get out of work to go practice Friday, which is going to set us behind the ball. With our practice Saturday, hopefully we can get the car dialed in quick enough.”
While his experience at Anderson is limited, Prunty does have other experience at similar tracks to use at his disposal. He is a former track champion at Slinger Super Speedway, as well as a past Slinger Nationals champion. While success at Rockford Speedway hasn’t been there, his nephew Alex is a two-time winner of the National Short Track Championships.
Though he says the three tracks aren’t completely similar, Prunty believes the quick acclimation process will be streamlined due to his experience at Slinger and Rockford.
“Slinger, Rockford and Anderson are all higher-banked tracks,but they all race a little different. I’m good at Slinger, my car’s good at Rockford, my nephew (Alex)’s got a good setup for there. It compares enough that you can set the car up close and make some adjustments. That’s one of the reasons why I like Anderson. It’s a tight track, it’s a fast track, that’s what I’m used to at Slinger.”
Saturday will be Prunty’s ninth appearance with the ARCA/CRA Super Series, and he’s hoping it won’t be the only one in 2020. His most recent start came with the series in 2018, a sixth-place result at Toledo Speedway.
“I really enjoy racing against different people. If you race weekly, you race and bump fenders with the same guys. I’ve always enjoyed running with the CRA series,” he stated. “It’s been tough with schedules and how far the drive is, but I enjoy it.
“It’s a well-ran series, I like how Glenn (Luckett) runs stuff. I’m hoping we can still run with them a few more times, whether it’s Nashville or even Winchester. I hope to get to Winchester this and that would be fun, anything can happen.”
Prunty will have the win on his mind when he makes the trek south for Saturday’s ARCA/CRA Super Series race at Anderson. He says chasing after the win starts in qualifying, given the tough nature of the high-banked quarter-mile.
“Hopefully we qualify good enough to get a good starting position. Keep the car clean, keep the tires under it and with 30 laps to go hope to be in the top-three and race our way to the win. You’ve just got to be patient and not burn the tires off.”
Fans who are unable to make the trip to Anderson Speedway can watch Saturday’s ARCA/CRA Super Series event live on Speed51 as part of Summer Thunder TV. Click here to become a subscriber today.
-Story by: Koty Geyer, Speed51 National Correspondent – Twitter: @kgeyer3
-Photo Credit: Speed51 Photo