PURSLEY MAKES IT TWO IN A ROW AT PIR
3 Amigos Organic Blanco 100 kicks of 2011 NASCAR season in Phoenix
Greg Pursley pulled away to victory in the 3 Amigos Organic Blanco 100 in the 58th season opener of the NASCAR K&N Pro Series-West this evening at Phoenix International Raceway. It was Pursley’s second straight victory at Zoomtown, U.S.A.
Yet, Pursley and his team chose to shuffle themselves back into the middle of the pack fairly early in the race, and it worked out well when the checkered flag flew after sunset.
Series rules require all competitors to split their tires changes and fueling into separate pit stops, it forced all teams to roll the dice when it came to making stops. The two fastest drivers in the early part of the race, pole-sitter Brennan Newberry and Pursley, made their two stops early, on laps 27 and 28 of 100 laps. It dealt them back in the middle of the pack, and that strategy burned Newberry.
Trying to race his way back to the front, Newberry went spinning multiple times in turn four on lap 64 in a wreck that destroyed the car of Alex Kennedy.
On the other hand, David Mayhew, the leader for much of the middle portion of the race, adopted a late-race pit strategy. His team called him to pit road on laps 80 and 81, and he was never able to climb higher than his final finishing spot of ninth.
Third place finisher Derek Thorn gave Pursley plenty to think about as they battled for the lead over much of the last 20 laps. But, on a lap 94 restart, Thorn dropped back when he failed to keep pace as the green flag waved. Pursley built a big lead, and Jonathan Gomez snatched second place from Thorn.
Ty Dillon, grandson of NASCAR Sprint Cup multiple-time championship owner Richard Childress, finished fourth, and Brett Thompson, making his 100th series start, was fifth.
Tickets to the exciting Feb. 24-27 SUBWAY Fresh Fit 500™ NASCAR event weekend are available with prices starting at just $25. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit www.PhoenixRaceway.com/tickets or call 866-408-RACE (7223).
Related PIR News
Two-time Olympian and current UFC star Dan Henderson will lead the field to the green flag behind the wheel of the Official Toyota Camry Pace Car at the start of the CampingWorld.com 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on Sunday, March 15. Henderson’s appearance was the result of a partnership between PIR and Niner Sports & Entertainment. As the official pace car driver, the 44-year old mixed martial artist will take an honorary lap around the one-mile oval.
Phoenix International Raceway was honored twice in recent weeks by NASCAR for outstanding work in the areas of marketing and community outreach. Earlier this year, PIR's 50th Anniversary was named NASCAR's Marketing Campaign of the Year and the PIR Track Services team received NASCAR's Track Services Teamwork Award; and today, PIR Communications Manager Greg Fresquez received NASCAR's Industry Ambassador Award.
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series star Kevin Harvick, driver of the No. 4 Budweiser Chevrolet, is scheduled to appear at Phoenix International Raceway’s Budweiser ROLL-BAR Club for a moderated question and answer session before the CampingWorld.com 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race on Sunday, March 15.
Phoenix International Raceway hosted up-and-coming driver Ruben Garcia Jr. from the NASCAR Mexico Series as he spoke to more than 2,000 high school students at La Joya Community High School in Avondale on Wednesday, Feb. 18. In addition to his racing background, Garcia talked with the students about the importance of education and pursuing their goals.
Fans coming to the CampingWorld.com 500 at Phoenix International Raceway will be in for a treat prior to the race. That morning, the popular Grammy-nominated and multi-platinum rock group Tonic will perform a pre-race concert in the fan midway area at 10:30 a.m. MST.