From Venturini Motorsports:
Daytona Beach, Florida (February 12, 2016) – Saturday’s ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards season opening Lucas Oil 200 Driven by General Tire marks the beginning of Venturini Motorsports 34th year of series competition. Looking to duplicate their 2013 Daytona victory, the team returns to the beach with a three team effort led by 18-year old rookie William Byron who’s 188.139 mph (47.837) qualifying lap was second quickest behind pole sitter Cole Custer. Byron, driving the No.55 Liberty University Toyota, is making his third overall series start and first on the high banks of Daytona.
“We were fourth in the pack and I got a good run with Cole (Custer) behind me for our first fast lap,” Byron said. “We’re starting on the outside for the race. Hopefully, we can get in line early and stay with the fast pack. The outside line might hold up for awhile…it just depends on how the race goes.”
Byron’s teammate Tom Hessert, driving the No.25 Florida Lottery – Bullet Products Toyota, challenged the front row starters with a fast lap of 187.848 mph (47.911) good enough for fourth place on the starting grid of 40-cars. Hessert signed with Venturini during the off-season and will compete for the series championship in 2016. Mark Thompson qualified 18th driving his No.66 Phoenix Air Toyota.
Nine groups with five cars in each pack posted time and speed with no on-track incidents. Each group had four minutes to work with. Qualifying groups were determined by combining both practice sessions from Thursday afternoon and Friday morning.
The 53rd annual Lucas Oil 200 Driven by General Tire at Daytona is live on Fox Sports 1 on Saturday, February 13 at 4:00 p.m. EST and precedes NASCAR’s same-night Sprint Unlimited.