Fike Fastest At Daytona
December 20, 2004 | 12:33 P.M. EST
In all, a record 49 drivers posted speeds in 43 different cars with Galesburg, Illinois driver AJ Fike posting the quickest speed overall at 182.256 mph in an Andy Hillenburg-prepared Chevrolet. There were no on-track incidents.
Second-generation racer David Ragan was second quickest overall at 182.197 over rookie Chad McCumbee at 182.076. McCumbee, one of several drivers testing in equipment fielded by Hillenburg, had a steady stream of team members, visitors and media congratulate him on his acting debut. McCumbee played Dale Earnhardt Jr. in the recently released ESPN-produced television movie "3".
The overall test speeds were based on single-car practice runs; however, four and five car drafts Saturday and Sunday afternoon were producing speeds in the 184-185 mph range.
The traditional, and initially scheduled, 3-day test was reduced to Saturday and Sunday only, based on Daytona Int'l Speedway infield construction timelines. Teams took advantage of a total of 9 hours of qualifying practice and 5 hours of drafting practice.
Teams not attending the test will be pleasantly surprised at the new accommodations provided, with all-new garages and a completely renovated infield including turn 1 drive-under tunnel large enough to allow transporters in and out of the infield with no interruption to on-track activities.
Six-time ARCA RE/MAX Series champion Frank Kimmel visited Sunday, but without his Advance Auto Parts-Pork Ford personnel and equipment. Kimmel spent time in the Brian Keselowski garage, since Bob and Kay Keselowski's son acquired the Ford he tested from the champ.
The Advance Discount Auto Parts 200, LIVE on SPEED Channel at 4 pm eastern, serves as a preamble for the same-night NASCAR Nextel Cup Series Bud Shootout.
Tickets for the ARCA RE/MAX Series Advance Auto Parts 200 and NASCAR Nextel Cup Series Budweiser Shootout at Daytona are available online or by calling 1-800-PITSHOP.