MOORESVILLE, N.C. (July 6, 2017) – From top-five finishes to birthdays and baseball games, Cunningham Motorsports driver Shane Lee has a lot to look forward to heading into the tenth race of the 2017 ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards season. After earning a fourth-place finish two weeks ago, Lee is ready to take that momentum to Iowa Speedway and look for his first ARCA win in the Fans with Benefits 150 this Saturday.
“I’ve never been to Iowa, but I think I’ll be able to adapt pretty quick,” said Lee. “There are a lot of tracks on the schedule that I’ve never been to, but have had to get accustomed to in a short amount of time and Iowa won’t be any different. It’s a unique track and Cunningham has had success here before, so hopefully we can finally get the No. 22 Big Tine Ford Fusion a win. We had a weekend off which was a good time to regroup and get everything set for the halfway point of the year.”
During that ‘regrouping’ time, Lee celebrated his 24th birthday on July 4 and hopes the celebration can carry over into victory lane with a win at Iowa. Lee has been a strong contender each race, stacking up four top-five finishes so far this season with his best finish coming in the premier event of the season at Daytona where he wheeled his way up to third. Turning to Iowa, Lee has never seen the 7/8-mile track, but veteran crew chief Paul Andrews doesn’t see that as a problem.
“I think this will be a good track for Shane,” said Andrews. “Even though it’s considered a short track, it really drives closer to what an intermediate track is like and he does really well on those. I think the way he’s going to attack the track will be strong and can get us right up with the other contenders. Shane adapts to these tracks that he’s never been to pretty fast…sometimes faster than places that he has been to because everything is new to him. We had some time in this break to tune up the car to how we want it and it should be a pretty good race.”
Now before the race even starts, Lee will put down the steering wheel and pick up a baseball for one night as he and teammate Dalton Sargeant will throw out the ceremonial first pitch at the Iowa Cubs game Friday evening. The Iowa Cubs are the Triple-A affiliate for the World Series Champion Chicago Cubs.
“This will definitely be something to remember,” said Lee. “I grew up playing baseball and still play softball in our church league so it’s a sport that I’ve really always been a fan of and have enjoyed. I’ve never thrown out a first pitch…as long as I make it over the plate I’ll be happy. It’ll be a fun, local event to go to before the big race day Saturday.”
The Fans with Benefits 150 will start with practice at 11:30 – 1:30 p.m. followed by General Tire Pole Qualifying at 3:15. Driver intros take place at 7:30 with the green flag falling for the 150-lap feature at 8:18. The race will air on a tape-delayed basis on MAVTV. Live timing and scoring will be available onwww.arcaracing.com . All times are local (Central).