SALEM, Ind. – After a mediocre start to the 2018 ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards season, Gus Dean (@gusdean) and his Win-Tron Racing head to Salem (Ind.) Speedway for Sunday’s Kentuckiana Ford Dealers 200 hoping for a super performance in their No. 32 GREE Cooling Products | Baker Distributing Chevrolet.
The rough, tough historic high banks of Salem’s oval have always been a favorite for the Bluffton, S.C. native and his Mooresville, N.C.-based team. Last year, Dean delivered his season-best runner-up finish in the spring and backed it up in the fall with a solid top-five performance.
On the heels of a stout test session last week at the Southern Indiana short track, Dean eyes his second career ARCA win at one of the sport’s toughest tracks.
“I can’t wait to get back to Salem this weekend,” said Dean who sits 11th in the championship standings after two races.
“Salem. I can’t describe the place. It’s a track that suits my style and I absolutely love it. I wished we raced there five times a year.
“It’s a neat short track with a lot of rich history and one of the staples of the ARCA Racing Series. We need a good run on Sunday to give us some momentum heading to Talladega and the stretch ahead.”
Last Thursday, Dean tested at the 0.555-mile oval where his Win-Tron Racing team led by veteran crew chief Jamie Jones spent the day focusing on race runs, with a few qualifying attempts in-between with hopes of allowing the 23-year-old Dean to find his groove and the opportunity to score his first career ARCA pole.
“A pole would be cool,” noted Dean. “In ARCA, a pole comes with some points and that’s something we need right now. We’re working on the overall package at Win-Tron and honestly, I couldn’t be happier. The relationship I have with Jamie right now is strong.
“We’re communicating, we’re learning and we both listen. We had a lot to be proud of in 2017, but the bar has been raised for 2018 and I like the direction we’re going.
“Even though the results haven’t shown – we’ve had bad fast No. 32 GREE Cooling Products | Baker Distributing Chevrolets. At Daytona, we got caught up in an early crash, bounced back and competed for a top-five before got wiped out again. In Nashville, we had a car capable of winning but had a mechanical glitch. It happens.
“We’re going to Salem though and it’s our time.”
Kevin Cywinski, team principal of Win-Tron Racing says the best of his No. 32 GREE Racing team is yet to come.
“I’m a proud owner,” he said. “Gus is in the shop a lot and the guys are working harder knowing that we have what it takes to not only contend for top-five finishes — but win races.
“Salem has always historically been a track we’ve ran well at. We’ve won there. I sure would like to go back to Victory Lane with Gus on Sunday, it would be a great way to point our season (back) in the right direction.”
In 29 career ARCA Racing Series starts, Dean captured his first career victory in his second ever start at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway after starting a career-best second in Apr. 2016. Overall, Dean has eight top-five and 17 top-10 finishes.
The Kentuckiana Ford Dealers 200 (200 laps | 111 miles) is the third of 20 races on the 2018 ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards schedule. Practice begins Sat., Apr. 21 with an hour and a half practice session from 12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. General Tire pole qualifying is set for later in the day at 4:00 p.m. The race is set to take the green flag on Sun., Apr. 22 shortly after 2:15 p.m. The event will be televised live on MAVTV, while ARCARacing.com will stream live timing and scoring throughout the entire weekend festivities. All times are local (Eastern).
For more on Gus Dean, please visit his all new website at GusDean.com or like him on Facebook. Dean tweets too. Follow him on Twitter @GusDean.
For additional information on GREE Racing, please like them on Facebook and follow them on Twitter @GREE_Racing.