DOVER, Del. – With the final race of the 2017 NASCAR K&N Pro Series East (NKNPSE) season upon Tyler Dippel (@Tyler_Dippel) and Rette Jones Racing, the team hopes that Friday’s National Fallen Firefighters Foundation 125 presented by Carl Deputy & Son Builders at Dover (Del.) International Speedway yields their best outing of the year.
While much of their season has been plagued by misfortune, the NASCAR Next alumnus and his team have kept their heads high, hoping that they’ve saved the best for last in Dippel’s second career start at the “Monster Mile.”
“Hard to believe that the end of the year is here,” said Dippel. “I really appreciate all that Rette Jones Racing has done for me this year. No, we haven’t had the finishes we have hoped for, but we’ve made some great memories along the way.
“I’m going to Dover focused as ever and determined that we have a good showing with our No. 30 TYCAR Trenchless / D&A Concrete Contractors Ford and keep ourselves in the top-10 in points and wheel a good finish that can propel us into the offseason with momentum.”
Last year at Dover, Dippel qualified his car fifth but settled for seventh when the checkered flag flew.
“I learned a lot last year at Dover,” added Dippel. “For sure it’s a momentum track. You really need to accelerate through the corner and get that bite off that you can carry on the straightaways and back into the corner.
“When you go over the bridge exiting Turn 2, it does have that rollercoaster feeling which makes the track that much more fun to drive. It’s also a track you have to respect. If you get too comfortable, Miles’ (Dover’s mascot) will come up and bite you. We just need to run our race and put ourselves in position at the end.
“125 laps will go by quick.”
Rette has elected to bring the same chassis that his team utilized at Dover last fall, where the team qualified 10th but rallied in the late stages of the race to earn a third-place finish. Armed with the same setup, he believes Dippel should be able to contend for his second career K&N East win.
“I love going to Dover,” said Rette. “It’s a fast place with some good banking. It’s also a momentum track and a place where I feel Tyler should be able to show his talent amongst a talented and competitive field.
“We learned last year that our car really got better the longer we ran. We may have to make some tweaks to fit Tyler’s driving-style, but we should still be in the ballpark when we unload. With all that Tyler has had to embrace and settle for this year, a win would be a great exclamation point to end our year as we look to what’s next.”
Rette Jones Racing also expects co-owner Terry Jones to attend Friday afternoon’s race at Dover. Jones, a native of Amherstburg, Ontario Canada will make his first public appearance since being involved in a horrific motorcycle accident earlier this year.
“It’s going to be a great feeling to have Terry at the track this weekend,” added Dippel. “He’s had to go through a lot this year and to have him on the sidelines rooting me on in the final race of the year is that extra incentive to go out there and leave nothing on the table!”
Through 13 K&N races this season, Dippel, driver of the No. 30 TYCAR Trenchless Technologies Ford Fusion has competed in 12 of them and sits 10th in the championship standings, 28 points behind ninth-place runner Collin Cabre.
In the most recent race at New Jersey Motorsports Park, Dippel contended for a top-10 finish, but transmission woes two laps from the finish relegated him to a 11th place finish.
In 26 career NASCAR K&N Pro Series East starts, Dippel, 17, has earned one victory (Mobile Speedway, 2016), achieved two top-five and 12 top-10 finishes. The teenager has also 139 laps led in event competition.
The National Fallen Firefighters Foundation 125 presented by Carl Deputy & Son Builders (125 laps / 125 miles) is the 14th of 14 races on the 2017 NASCAR K&N Pro Series East schedule. Practice begins for the one-day show on Fri., Sept. 29 from 8:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m. Qualifying is set for later in the day at 1:05 p.m. The race will take the green flag just after 5:00 p.m. that afternoon. The event will be televised on a tape-delayed basis on NBC Sports Network with an air date on Thurs., Oct. 5 at 7:00 p.m. ET.
Dippel tweets too. Follow him @Tyler_Dippel.