SHELBY TOWNSHIP, Mich.—Aug. 19, 2013 — Taylor Ferns had never raced a full-bodied stock car on a one-mile dirt oval prior to this past weekend, and in fact, she had only raced once on that type of track, with that coming in a Silver Crown machine back in May. The 17-year-old didn’t let that slow her down, as she earned a pair of top-10 finishes at the historic one-mile dirt oval at the Illinois State Fairgrounds last weekend. Ferns finished ninth with the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards in the Allen Crowe 100 and came home 10th in the Tony Bettenhausen 100 with the Traxxas USAC Silver Crown Series.
“The Springfield Mile is a pretty unique track and I really enjoyed racing there,” said Ferns. “It was a lot of fun and I think our results showed that. We feel like we are finally getting our luck turned around this year and have had some solid finishes lately. Racing twice definitely helped and both races were just about at the same time each day, so we kind of knew what to expect weather-wise and track condition-wise.”
Ferns took to the mile oval for the Allen Crowe 100 for the ARCA Series on Sunday, Aug. 18, beginning the day with a practice session in the morning, followed by qualifying. She turned the fifth-fastest lap in time trials of the 33 entrants, but had to start the rear of the field following an accident after her qualifying lap, with the team making quick repairs before the drop of the green flag.
“My mindset was to get to the front of the field and I knew I had 100 laps to do it,” she explained. “We took it one lap at a time and one car at a time and were able to pass quite a few cars. We wanted to finish the race and run all the laps. That was our main goal as a team and we achieved it. We haven’t had best of luck this year, so to finish in the top-10 was great, especially considering where we started.”
Starting at the rear of the 33-car field, Ferns quickly began her march forward in the No. 55 Motor City Transport Inc./National Auto Placement Toyota for Venturini Motorsports. She worked her way into the top-20 in the first half of the 100-lapper and found herself among the top-15 as the race wore on. She made a trio of pit stops over the course of the 100-lapper, with her crew continually making adjustments on her car. Ferns crossed the finish line 11th; following a late race restart that extended the race to 104 laps, and gained two more positions after a couple of drivers were penalized for jumping the final restart. The ninth-place finish matched her best ARCA finish of the season.
“It definitely helped running the Silver Crown car the day before, because I knew how the track would change,” she shared. “Running on Saturday also helped me learn how to change my driving style as the day and the race went on. I think that helped me know what was coming and I was ready for it and that really showed on Sunday in the ARCA race.”
The native of Shelby Township, Mich., has a pair of ARCA top-10 finishes this year in a limited number of starts. She is scheduled to compete in three more races with the series this season, including on another one-mile dirt oval, as well as on the pavement at Iowa Speedway and Kentucky Speedway.
In the Tony Bettenhausen 100 for the Traxxas USAC Silver Crown Series on Saturday, Aug. 17, Ferns lined up 16th and worked her way forward, finishing 10th, earning her second straight top-10 finish with the series. She opened the day by timing in 16th-fastest aboard the No. 35 Toyota-powered Beast for Team 6R.
“It’s a lot more work racing 100 laps on the dirt in a Silver Crown car than it is on the pavement,” Ferns shared. “It was definitely a long race, but I had a lot of fun out there. We persevered through the problems we were having in the race and made it to the end and came away with a top-10, which was a respectable result.”
Ferns will return to action on Labor Day weekend at the DuQuoin State Fairgrounds in Illinois, again pulling double duty in 100-lap events for the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards and the Traxxas USAC Silver Crown Series.
Taylor Ferns and Ferns Racing would like to thank their valued partners: Motor City Auto Transport Inc., National Auto Placement, FK Rod Ends, Lucas Oil, K&N Filters, Lansing Sanitary Supply (LSS), Simpson Race Products, Indy Race Parts, ButlerBuilt, Allstar Performance,Stanton Racing Engines, Hoosier Tire Midwest, Lyn St. James Women in the Winner’s Circle Foundation, Race4Girls and Racing2Cure.
Keep up to date
For the latest news, results and information on Taylor Ferns and Ferns Racing and to view a full 2013 schedule, visit TaylorFerns.com. Follow Taylor on Twitter at @TaylorFerns and like her on Facebook.