Race Information: Event: NAPA 150, Saturday, July 2 at 9:00 p.m. Local Time Track: Columbus Motor SpeedwayQualifying: Saturday, July 2 at 6:30 p.m. Local Time Track Length: 0.333-mile paved oval.
Welcome To The Buckeye State: After a week off, the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East resumes action for a Saturday night showdown at Columbus Motor Speedway. Rookie sensation Dominique Van Wieringen continues to rave in the spotlight and looks for an explosive performance with a historic and breakthrough victory for Rette Jones Racing (RJR).
Last Time Out; Stafford Speedway: An absolute dominate performance by Van Wieringen two weeks ago at Stafford Speedway saw an opportunity for the rookie to etch her name into the record books with her first career victory, but an impatient driver took out the No. 30 Durobyte / NTI-UTI Ford Fusion from the lead and causing extensive damage to her machine. Despite a mangled race car, Van Wieringen finished the race in the 16th position after starting third.
Setting Another New Record: Despite the outcome in the Stafford 150, Van Wieringen did set a new NASCAR K&N Pro Series East record by beating her own previous record for the most laps led in an event by a female competitor. Van Wieringen led for 88 laps in her No. 30 Durobyte / NTI-UTI Ford Fusion, surpassing a previous best 30 laps led in the second race of the season at Mobile (Ala.) International Speedway. She has led 118 laps in total in seven races in 2016.
Looking For More: After scoring her first top-10 finish of her NASCAR K&N Pro Series East career in her debut at New Smyrna (Fla.) Speedway in February, Van Wieringen looks to start the second half the way she did the first with a career-best finish inSaturday night’s NAPA 150.
Happy Anniversary: Saturday night’s NAPA 150 marks the one-year anniversary of Rette Jones Racing in NASCAR K&N Pro Series East competition. The team was founded by racers Mark Rette and Terry Jones. Putting a vision into reality, the team answered their debut loud and proud with an impressive performance from driver Grant Quinlan qualifying third, leading 63 laps and battling Rico Abreu to the checkered flag, before settling for a close second.
She’s Been Here Before: Amherstburg, Ontario native Van Wieringen has been to Columbus Motor Speedway before. In 2013 and 2014, she qualified for two CRA JEGS / All-Star Tour events qualifying fifth both years, but unable to grab any better finish than 14th. Van Wieringen hopes her experience will propel in her K&N competition on July 2.
Gone Driftin’: During the off-weekend, Van Wieringen traveled out west to a drifting school in the desert of California at Willow Springs. Learning the basic fundamentals, the first day, she later transitioned to specific traits including donut standing still, donut around a cone, figure 8s, multiple transition courses and E-brake use. Other tasks she handled included a full drifting cycle on a road course, before moving to an oval. Van Wieringen also maneuvered the car at different points and at hard angles.
School’s Out… Sorta: While spring classes have wrapped up for Van Wieringen at the University of North Carolina Charlotte with three A’s and one B, she has chosen to stay focused in the books with a few summer class to stay ahead of the curve for her busy racing schedule. Now a senior, Van Wieringen is studying to become a mechanical engineer.
Get Well Soon: Rette Jones Racing send get well wishes to lead mechanic Steven Keller who was injured in a non-racing related accident two weeks ago. Keller, a fixture at RJR since the beginning is recovering in Canada and is expected to make a full recovery and return to the track soon.
Proud Partnership: For the 2016 NASCAR K&N Pro Series East season, Rette Jones Racing is proud to welcome a partnership with NASCAR Technical Institute (NTI) and Universal Technical Institute (UTI). Through a campus-based school system, UTI offers specialized technical education programs under the banner of several brands, including NASCAR.
Students will learn everything you need to know to work on a wide variety of vehicles as part of their core training on top of 15 weeks of NASCAR-specific courses to learn racing fundamentals.
She’s Fast: In the first seven races of the season, Van Wieringen has mastered an average starting position of 6.1, qualifying third, second, 12th, second, 17th, fourth and third respectively. The Rette Jones Racing development driver holds an average finishing position of 16th with seven races remaining this season.
Points Report: With seven races remaining on the schedule, Dominique Van Wieringen sits 15th in the championship standings, while car owner Mark Rette occupies the same position in the car owner standings. Van Wieringen trails Justin Haley by 90 points for the championship lead. Just 15 markers separate her from 10th place in the standings currently held by Dillon Bassett.
Up To Speed With Dominique: Van Wieringen has set many accolades, despite her youth. She was the first female to lead a lap in the CRA / JEGS All-Star Series and the first rookie to win a JEGS / CRA All-Star Series point’s race. In addition, Van Wieringen was the first female to win an Outlaw Super Late Model championship in the United States, while holding the current record at Winchester (Ind.) Speedway for the most laps led (74) by a female competitor.
Female Flavor: The NAPA 150 won’t be lacking a female presence on Saturday night. Van Wieringen is one of two females set to compete in the eighth race of the season. Joining Van Wieringen is Rev Racing’s Ali Kern. Both females are running for the championship title with Van Wieringen leading the duo in the championship standings by two positions or nine points.
Sponsorship Lineup: In addition to Durobyte and NASCAR Technical Institute, Rette Jones Racing also welcomes Jones Group International, J-AAR Excavating, Goodridge Fluid Transfer Systems, Pro System Brakes and Russo’s Tinting as associate partners this season. RJR is co-owned by successful entrepreneur and race car driver Terry Jones.
Columbus Motor Speedway Fast Fact: A charter member of the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series, Columbus Motor Speedway is a .333-mile asphalt oval that began as a motorcycle racing track in 1946 and first played host to stock cars in 1950. The track has announced it will be closing at the conclusion of the 2016 season.
Stay Social With Dominique: Van Wieringen is active on Twitter. You can follow and tweet with her @DominiqueRacing. Her team, Rette Jones Racing is also active on Twitter. Follow them @RetteJones30.
Chassis Intel: Mark Rette, crew chief and co-owner of Rette Jones Racing has elected again to bring chassis number 001 to the 0.333-mile paved oval this weekend. This Ford Fusion is appearing in its 10th race with RJR. This race chassis was last utilized at Stafford Motor Speedway in mid-June and holds a career-best second place finish last July at Columbus Motor Speedway.
Rette Jones Racing, Columbus Motor Speedway, Pre-Race Quotes:
Dominique Van Wieringen, driver of the No. 30 Durobyte / NTI-UTI Ford Fusion:
On Stafford Motor Speedway: “I was very upset at the end of the Stafford race. We had a legit opportunity to take our No. 30 Durobyte / NTI-UTI Ford Fusion to Victory Lane and I feel like it was stolen from us after being taken out by another aggressive competitor. We salvaged some points, but our spirit was hurt that night considering how well we ran.”
On Columbus Motor Speedway: “Obviously, the team has had Columbus Motor Speedway circle on their calendar all season long and it’s no surprise why. The Rette Jones Racing team has brought a strong car to the race track each and every week and there’s no doubt, they’ll continue to do the same this weekend. Hopefully, we can have a similar performance on Saturday and maybe just pick up that win that eluded us at Stafford.”
On Drifting School In California: “I’m really glad I went to the drifting school. It will help me in situations we’ve had this year where when the car gets sideways, I can drive it out and avoid hitting the wall. It created a new instinct for me than locking down when I can’t save it anymore.”
Rette Jones Racing, Columbus Motor Speedway, Pre-Race Quotes:,
Mark Rette, mentor and co-owner of the No. 30 Durobyte / NTI-UTI Ford Fusion:
On Stafford Motor Speedway: “I felt gutted for Dominique. She was doing everything right and had a car capable of winning the race and a driver just decided to bulldoze his way into the lead and take us out in the process. I’m still upset about it and we’re more than determined to make up for it at Columbus.”
On Columbus Motor Speedway: “This weekend marks the one-year anniversary for Rette Jones Racing at Columbus Motor Speedway. We made our K&N debut last year at Columbus and quickly proved to everyone that we’re not here to play and we’re here to contend and win races. We’ve definitely contended since then, it would be nice to see if we can get our first win on Saturday night with Dominique behind the wheel.
Dominique Van Wieringen, Columbus Speedway NKNPSE Performance Record:
Dominique Van Wieringen will make her eighth career NASCAR K&N Pro Series East start this weekend at Columbus Motor Speedway, no prior starts.
The NAPA 150 (150 laps / 49.95 miles) is the eighth of 14 races on the 2016 NASCAR K&N Pro Series East schedule. Practice is set for Saturday, July 2 from 2:15 p.m. – 3:00 p.m., with a final practice etched in from 3:15 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Qualifying is set for later in the day at 6:30 p.m. The event will take the green flag later that night shortly after 9:00 p.m. (ET). The event will be televised on a tape-delayed basis on NBC Sports Network (NBCSN) on Thursday, July 8 at 12:30 p.m. ET.
Driver: Dominique Van Wieringen on Twitter @DominiqueRacing.
Team: Rette Jones Racing on Twitter @RetteJones30.
Sanction: NASCAR K&N Pro Series East: NASCARHometracks.com.
Credit: Mark Rette