After successfully earning a hard-fought top-10 finish in ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards competition at Road America (Wisc.), SCOTT Rookie of the Year candidate Gus Dean (@gusdean) heads back to the dirt for Monday’s running of the General Tire Grabber 100.
Tucked in a tight points battle for third place overall in the championship with close friend Shane Lee, Dean hopes the fundamentals he learned at the Illinois State Fairgrounds a few week ago will pay dividends and bring his 13th top-10 performance of the season.
“After escaping my first road course with a top-10 finish, I’m anxious to get back on the dirt and give that another whirl,” said Dean who locks fourth in the championship standings, just 15 points behind Lee.
“Without a doubt, I learned a lot at Springfield and hope that only propels me forward at DuQuoin.”
Flashing back to Springfield, Dean qualified a season-high third but found himself in an early race spin. Dean later recovered to maneuver his No. 32 GREE Cooling Products Toyota back inside the top-10, before a faulty coil in the engine dropped the Bluffton, S.C.-native to 11th in the final rundown.
“I know where the edge is,” Dean said with a chuckle. “I think I have to be a little more aggressive on the track when I was being conservative and be conservative when I was trying to be aggressive. I’m hoping that approach helps me on Monday. Not to mention, I stalled the car in the pits at Springfield and I don’t plan to do that again either.”
Big picture racing, however still lies heavily on the mind of the 23-year-old racing sensation. With the championship out of reach, the South Carolinian wants to extend his lead in the Rookie of the Year category with just five races remaining.
“I’d like to finish third in the championship, but the Rookie of the Year title is pretty important to us,” said Dean who drives for car owner Kevin Cywinski. “We’ve fought all year to be as productive and competitive as we can.”
“I know DuQuoin is going to be a little bit of challenge, but if we keep the mindset that we’ve had all year, it has paid off pretty well for us,” sounded Dean. “In 14 races, we have 11 top-10 finishes and 12 top-11 finishes. That’s something to really be proud of.
“Of course, I want to get GREE back in Victory Lane and we still have a chance to do it. Maybe it will happen at DuQuoin, maybe it won’t, but we’re going to give it a shot nonetheless. At the end of the day, if I can continue to learn how to race an ARCA car on the dirt and bring home a good finish for GREE and our partners, we’ll take it and fight back at Salem Speedway.”
In 22 career ARCA Racing Series starts, Dean captured his first career victory in his second ever start at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway after starting second in Apr. 2016. Overall, Dean has six top-five and 15 top-10 finishes and has led 37 laps in ARCA competition.
The General Tire Grabber 100 (100 laps / 100 miles) is the 16th of 20 races on the 2017 ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards schedule. Practice begins Monday, Sept. 4 with a one-hour practice session planned from 10:45 a.m. – 11:45 a.m. General Tire pole qualifying is set for later in the day at 12:30 p.m. The race is set to take the green flag shortly after 3:00 p.m. The event will be tape-delayed on MAVTV, while ARCARacing.com will stream live timing and scoring throughout the day’s activities. All times are local (CT).
Dean tweets too. Follow him on Twitter @GusDean.
In 1991, GREE set out to make the world a cooler place. To this end, we’ve become a global leader in air conditioners, developing some of the most advanced commercial and residential air conditioners in the world. Based in Zhuhai, China, GREE is now the world’s largest specialized air conditioner company integrating R&D, manufacturing, sales and service. It’s our mission to innovate and create new ways to help people live well and stay comfortable no matter where they live, work or play.
About Win-Tron Racing:
Located in Mooresville, North Carolina, Win-Tron Racing is a professional race team headquartered in “Race City USA.” Owned by former racer Kevin Cywinski, the team will compete for the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards championship in 2017 with driver Gus Dean in the No. 32 GREE Toyota Camry. The team will also field a second entry in the No. 33 Toyota Camry with Justin Fontaine and others. Learn more at WinTronRacing.com or on Twitter @WinTronRacing.