Kimmel To Attempt Daytona 500

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Eight-time ARCA RE/MAX Series Champion, Frank Kimmel will attempt to make his first career start in the historic Daytona 500 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race with the help of fellow ARCA Champion Andy Hillenburg.

Kimmel will pilot the No. 71 FastTrack Ford Fusion for the Speedweek events including Sunday’s qualifying round as well as Thursday’s Gatorade Duels which will determine Kimmel’s spot in the starting field for the Daytona 500.

Kimmel has made seven previous NASCAR Cup Series starts in his career with his best starting position coming at the Talladega Superspeedway in 2002 of 29th and his best finish of 26th place position came at the Lowe’s Motor Speedway in October of 2002 while competing for team owner, Travis Carter.

Kimmel has plenty of starts at the 2.5-mile Daytona International Speedway including 15 ARCA RE/MAX Series starts, one NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series start where he finished eighth in 2004 and last season’s IROC start where he finished in the third position. Kimmel understands that just qualifying for the Daytona 500 will be a large task, but he feels his own experience at the track gives the FastTrack Racing team an excellent chance.

“There are a lot of very strong cars and drivers that put a tremendous amount of work into their cars just to come to Daytona and attempt to make the field,” said Kimmel. “The FastTrack Racing team is no exception, Andy (Hillenburg) and his team has put together a great car and it would be a great accomplishment for all of us to earn a starting position in the Daytona 500. I do think there is some advantage to having a lot of experience drafting when it comes to making this race because of the unique qualifying format of the Gatorade Duels. That race will be all about keeping my nose clean, but finishing high enough to earn a place in Sunday’s race.”

Kimmel will compete in Saturday’s Daytona ARCA 200 event prior to Sunday’s initial qualifying round for the Daytona 500 and will have only two practice sessions in preparation for Thursday’s Gatorade Duels.

Daytona 500 qualifying will be televised on Fox at 2 p.m. (ET) on Sunday and the Gatorade Duels will be televised on Speed at 2 p.m. (ET) on Thursday, February 15.

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