CONCORD, N.C. – Looking to shake the bad luck off their back, Gus Dean (@GusDean) and his Win-Tron Racing head to Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway looking for their second top-10 finish of the season in Thursday night’s General Tire 150.
While a strong performance in Sunday’s Menards 200 was thwarted approaching the halfway mark at Toledo Speedway, Dean and his Jamie Jones-led team are encouraged with the speed of their No. 32 GREE Cooling Products | Baker Distributing Chevrolets and look to continue to showcase that in ARCA’s return to Charlotte after a 14-year hiatus.
“Send me in coach,” Dean joked when referring to Charlotte. “I’m ready. Been ready since Sunday. We’ve had some really good No. 32 GREE Cooling Products | Baker Distributing Chevrolets but haven’t been able to produce the results we know we’re capable of.
“At the end of the day, that’s going to make us a better team in the long run. We know we were encouraged by our recent performance at the Charlotte test and hope to grow on that during practice, qualifying and the race on Thursday.”
With the addition of Jones, Dean says his confidence is at an all-time high despite posting just one top-10 finish in the opening five races of the season. Still, Dean knows that he had a car capable of winning in every race.
“There hasn’t been a race this year, where I didn’t feel give the right circumstances we couldn’t have won,” he added. “Jamie and the guys have been working their guts out to make sure our Chevrolets are good. More than good. Fast. There is no quit and something like Toledo just gives us more motivation to come to the track and bounce back.”
Charlotte will be just one of a few new tracks for the Bluffton, S.C. native this season and if he lets his freshman record speak for itself, new tracks for the Win-Tron Racing spoke volume when it came down to performance in his rookie season.
“There were several tracks last year where I had minimal to no track experience and we really threw ourselves into the spotlight,” added Dean. “I’m hoping for more of the same at Charlotte on Thursday night. It’s a huge race for ARCA, General Tire and ourselves. We’ll have guests there from GREE Racing, Tradewinds and Baker Distributing, so we want to go out there and be competitive and back up what we did in the test.”
Speaking of the Charlotte test, Dean found himself inside the top-10 in the speed charts after the six-hour testing session. The 23-year-old says he and Jones found something late in the session but ran out of time to complete the task to its perfection.
“We really do have a good baseline for practice on Thursday,” noted Dean. “The test went pretty good. Charlotte was intimidating at first, but as the test session went on – the changes worked, and we got better. A top-10 finish is what we need on Thursday night to point our ship back in the right direction.”
Win-Tron Racing owner Kevin Cywinski says the combo of Dean and Jones has quickly shown its potential and once the bad luck is behind them, their strength should only intensify.
“I was surprised how quick both Gus and Jamie were able to let the bad luck from Toledo roll of their back,” Cywinski said. “While both were disappointed in the hardship, they along with everyone else on this Win-Tron Racing team is extremely confident in the speed of our race cars.
“I expect that speed to continue this week at Charlotte. I felt for Gus’s first time there, he did an amazing job and I think he’ll get more comfortable throughout the day on Thursday. It’s going to be a tough race, one of the toughest of the year, but I think we’ll show that our No. 32 GREE Cooling Products | Baker Distributing Chevrolet is capable of being put in Victory Lane sooner rather than later.”
In 32 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 18 top-10 finishes.
The General Tire 150 (100 laps | 150 miles) is the sixth of 20 races on the 2018 ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards schedule. Practice begins Thurs., May 24 with a two-hour practice session from 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. Timed qualifying is set for later in the day at 5:00 p.m. The race is set to take the green flag later in the day shortly after 9:00 p.m. The event will be televised live on FOX Sports 1 (FS1), 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.