DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – For the second consecutive season at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway, Gus Dean (@gusdean) was a victim in a crash which led to a disappointing finish in the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards season-opener at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway.
Despite starting deep in the pack with a botched qualifying group during time trials on Friday afternoon, Dean and his team led by veteran crew chief Todd Myers knew they had a fast No. 32 GREE Toyota Camry capable of contending for the win.
After utilizing a cautious approach to work towards the front from 27th, Dean found himself in the top-10 on Lap 48, when the next lap Dean was struck by another competitor who lost control of his vehicle after a bump draft gone wrong in the tri-oval at the “World Center of Racing.”
The incident looking reminisce of his crash in his Daytona debut last Feb. left Dean’s Win-Tron Racing team 32nd in the final rundown.
“That was a hard hit,” said Dean. “We had a great No. 32 GREE Toyota, but I just can’t seem to find any luck at Daytona. Looking at the replay, it was nearly identical to what happened to me last year. I hate it for the guys on this Win-Tron Racing team and our sponsor GREE. We had a lot of people in the stands to support us and it didn’t work out.”
Knowing he’s in a deep hole to climb out of as he races for the series’ championship, the Bluffton, S.C.-native has the utmost confidence of his team that they will be able to bounce back moving forward.
“It’s a long season,” added Dean. “I love my team. The guys believe in me and I know we’re going to have some good runs throughout the season. We’re behind with the misfortune at Daytona, but we’ll be bounce back at Nashville and start our season then.”
Car owner Kevin Cywinski says he’s proud of his driver and team despite the outcome Saturday afternoon at Daytona.
“It’s part of the game and we know that,” Cywinski added. “We did everything we felt like we needed to do and it just didn’t work out. Can’t get discouraged. We just need to regroup and get back after it at Nashville. I’m proud of the work ethic of Gus and the team this past week and look forward to the rest of the season with our No. 32 GREE Toyota.”
In eight ARCA Racing Series starts, 22-year-old Dean captured his first career victory in his second career start at Talladega Superspeedway after starting second in Apr. 2016. Overall, Dean has one top-five and three top-10 finishes and has led 21 laps in ARCA competition.
Dean tweets too. Follow him on Twitter @GusDean.
In 1991, GREE set out to make the world a cooler place. To this end, we’ve become a global leader in air conditioners, developing some of the most advanced commercial and residential air conditioners in the world. Based in Zhuhai, China, GREE is now the world’s largest specialized air conditioner company integrating R&D, manufacturing, sales and service. It’s our mission to innovate and create new ways to help people live well and stay comfortable no matter where they live, work or play.
About Win-Tron Racing:
Located in Mooresville, North Carolina, Win-Tron Racing is a professional race team headquartered in “Race City USA.” Owned by former racer Kevin Cywinski, the team will compete for the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards championship in 2017 with driver Gus Dean in the No. 32 GREE Toyota Camry. Learn more at WinTronRacing.com or on Twitter @WinTronRacing.
Credit: Traci Cywinski