Matt Tifft Impresses In ARCA Debut For Win-Tron Racing At Toledo Speedway
TOLEDO, Ohio (May 21, 2013) – – Looking more like a regular than an inexperienced rookie, Matt Tifft, in his No. 89 DOC 360 Chevrolet Impala, finished an impressive fifth in his ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards debut at Toledo Speedway in the Menards 200 presented by Federated Car Care Sunday afternoon.
Tifft’s run, on-top of Win-Tron Racing’s teammate Mason Mingus’s second-place effort, made the event one to remember for the Mooresville, North Carolina-based Win-Tron Racing team.
While many were surprised by the run maneuvered by Tifft, the youngster necessarily wasn’t. The confidence in his team, plus his prior experience at the 0.5-mile paved oval, all equally paid dividends in the fifth ARCA Racing Series event of the year.
In the first practice session on Saturday afternoon, Tifft placed 10th before wholesale changes and a mock-qualifying run lifted the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East (NKPSE) rookie to second heading into Menards pole qualifying presented by Ansell a short time later.
Time trials saw Tifft nearly back-up his fastest lap in final practice, placing him seventh on the grid for his ARCA Racing Series debut.
With an enormous cheering section in the stands, Tifft took the green flag and fell into a rhythm, maintaining his placement inside the top-10 through the race’s first 50 circuits.
The yellow flag waived approaching lap 80, yielding an opportunity for Tifft to make one of his two scheduled pit stops from the sixth spot. A slight hiccup on pit road would slide the Buckeye native in the running order for the impending restart, landing him 13th.
Methodically and patiently though, Tifft crafted his No. 89 DOC 360 Chevrolet Impala back into the top-10 by lap 110. Settled in ninth when the seventh caution flag of the day waived, Tifft joined the leaders on pit road for their final stop of the day.
Brilliant work by the Win-Tron Racing crew allowed the rookie to gain four positions on pit road, lining up fifth for the restart.
When the green flag waived with 71 laps remaining, Tifft would fall into the clutches of nine-time champion Frank Kimmel for sixth, but immediately passed the No. 02 of Josh Williams to reclaim fifth on lap 132. A short time later, Tifft would lose the spot to teammate Mason Mingus.
However, when second-place runner Grant Enfinger succumbed to a flat tire inside the final 10 laps of the event, Tifft took advantage of his competitor’s misfortune, rising back into fifth where he took the checkered flag.
“What a great day for us,” said Tifft. “I had an absolute blast and I really couldn’t have asked for anything more in my ARCA debut. Our No. 89 DOC 360 Chevrolet Impala was pretty good from the moment we unloaded and that’s why we were able to run so competitively during the race. I cannot thank my guys, my friends, family and DOC 360 for making this race possible. It’s a dream come true.”
Tifft will take a breather, before returning to action on the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East tour from Bowman-Gray (N.C.) Stadium on Saturday, June 1. His next scheduled ARCA Racing Series run will occur at New Jersey Motorsports Park on July 28.
Learn more about DOC 360, by visit: drinkdoc360.com or Facebook/drinkdoc360.
For more on Matt Tifft, please visit MattTifftRacing.com or click on his Facebook page.
Tifft tweets too, follow him @matt89tifft.