Long Pond, PA (May 31, 2018) – Natalie Decker, recovering from recent surgery, will start tomorrow’s ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards General Tire #AnyWhereIsPossible 200 at Pocono Raceway but will give way to Brennan Poole after the drop of Friday’s green flag.
Decker, who underwent successful hernia surgery last week the day after finishing 15th at Charlotte Motor Speedway, will take the green flag before coming down pit road on lap-1 making way for Poole to jump into the seat of her No.25 N29 Capital Partners – Yamaha Power Products Toyota and complete the race for the popular 20-year old rookie driver.
“It’s an unfortunate situation for Natalie and the team,” said Poole Thursday morning from Pocono. “As a driver you always want to compete. I know how difficult this deal is for Natalie but it’s important for her to heal up and not push herself too much too early.”
Anticipating his role, Poole, who has spent the last three seasons racing in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, tested Decker’s car during yesterday’s open test session at Pocono. With limited practice due to an engine swap, the Texas native posted the seventh quickest practice time.
“I’m really bummed about not racing at Pocono. I was really looking forward to coming back here and improving on last year’s finish. It just wasn’t meant to be. The last thing I want to do is push myself too hard and take a chance of missing more races,” said Decker.
Decker, who made her series superspeedway debut at Pocono in 2017, picked up her first ever career top-10 in last year’s July race.
“Brennan (Poole) was a natural fit to fill in at Pocono. Not only will he do a great job representing my sponsors – N29 and Yamaha Power Products, but he has history with Venturini Motorsports and has had a bunch of success on this track over the years. We’ll see what happens tomorrow. I’m still excited to be at the track – but it’s going to be a little weird watching from the pit box instead of from behind the wheel.”
Throughout his career Poole has made 36 career ARCA starts and is a six-time series winner racing under the Venturini Motorsports banner between 2011-2014. In four series starts at Pocono, the 27-year old driver has accumulated an impressive track stat sheet, setting the current track qualifying record (’12) and earning one victory on the Tricky Triangle along with three consecutive General Pole awards.
Practice for the General Tire #AnywhereIsPossible 200 is raceday, Friday morning from 10 – 11:25 a.m., with General Tire Pole Qualifying at 2 p.m. The General Tire #AnywhereIsPossible 200 is live on FS2 Friday afternoon at 5:45 p.m.
In addition to live coverage on FS2, arcaracing.com will feature live timing and scoring and live chat of all on-track activities.
Credit: Venturini Motorsports