Self Inches Closer to Points Leader With Third Place Finish at Troop Aid 200

Nashville QualifyingAustin Wayne Self and the 98 team celebrated a third place finish at the Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway Saturday, April 11th. Self started the Troop Aid 200 in the 13th position and put on quite the show during the 200-lap race as he and the AM Technical Solutions Ford made their way through the field. The team’s car set up and Crew Chief, Matt Weber’s pit strategies put the team in top contention. Ten more laps and they may have had their first win of the season. Self really enjoyed the Fairgrounds racetrack. He said it was an honor for him to participate in the first ARCA race at the track in over 20 years and he can’t wait to return. The 98 team got off to a rocky start but their hard work and determination earned them a well-deserved podium finish.

After the first practice session Self said they struggled with the rear end being loose. The crew made several adjustments during the two practice rounds including a blind adjustment at the conclusion of practice. “We won’t know how that last change will affect the car until we get out on the track for qualifying,” explained Self. The track temperature was about 114 degrees during practice. The 98 crew believed that the track would cool down to well under 100 degrees when the green flag dropped. The team set the car up a little on the loose side thinking that that would put them closer to where they needed to be on the cooler track.

Self started in P13 and made his way up to the ninth spot during the first twenty laps of the Troop Aid 200. With only six tires to use throughout the race, pit strategies were crucial. The first caution came out on lap 42, prompting the first pitting opportunity under caution. The majority of the field stayed out but Self brought the AM Technical Solutions Ford to pit road and took two right side tires. He lost one spot coming to pit road and restarted in the eleventh spot. The two new tires gave Self the momentum he needed to start making his way back up through the field. He quickly made 4 passes in the first few laps following the restart. He made a fast pass on the outside to take over P10, two inside passes for P9 and P8 and then another outside pass putting him in the seventh position. Self continued to fly and made his way up to P4 in the next five laps. The young driver raced nice and clean; didn’t touch anything but the gas pedal.

Podium_NashvilleAnother caution on lap 70 brought the leaders to pit road while Self stayed out scoring him as the leader on the restart. Self and the second place driver got the jump on the field at the green flag but then Self began to fall back. He lost a few more spots as drivers with fresher tires gained momentum ending him up in P5. The final caution of the race came out on lap 155. All cars came to pit road. Self and 98, AM Technical Solutions Ford took four tires and no fuel for the last 30 laps of the Troop Aid 200. Self quickly made his first pass at the restart. With less than 30 to go he and the driver of the 6 car raced side-by-side for he third spot. After picking up the third position Self tried to run down the leaders. He came within inches of the second spot and with one more lap would have had it. It made for an exciting finish with loud yelling and cheers coming from the packed stands. The team was all smiles and celebrated the finish on the track and in victory lane with the race winner. From position thirteen to three, the young driver displayed his talent and love for coming from the back of the field. It was a heck of a race and the fans couldn’t have been happier about ARCA’s first race back at the Fairgrounds Speedway.

“Taking the two tires earlier in the race under the first caution really helped us gain momentum. We started out pretty loose but we got the car where it needed to be and never gave up. We just kept pushing to put ourselves in a better position. The set up and the pit strategies that Matt (Weber) came up with really paid off and I know we were all excited about a top 3 finish after starting 13th. I really like this track and I had a lot of fun driving it tonight. We sure went flying after those pit stops!” – Austin Wayne Self

Self will be scored third in the unofficial point standings. Official standings will be released Monday, April 13th. This was the second short track race of the Short Track Challenge in which Self was scored fourth prior to the Troop Aid 200. He is expected to move into the third or second position with points gained from the race in Nashville. From here the 98 crew will head to Salem Speedway for the Federated Auto Parts 200. This will be another race towards the dual championship, as the points will count towards the Championship and the Short Track Challenge. Salem always draws a crowd for Austin Wayne Self with large groups of family and friends traveling from nearby towns to watch their favorite driver compete. He finished in the third position at his last visit to Salem. This time he’ll be looking for his first win.

 

 

Self Continues Southern Short Track Racing Streak, Heads to Music City

AWS Music CitySelf continues a southern short track race streak this weekend at the Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway. This will be the third straight short track race Self will compete in since the race season began. The first race of this streak was the ARCA Mobile 200 in Mobile, AL where Self finished 4th moving him into the third place position in Championship points. Following Mobile Self returned to Texas for some Pro Late Model racing at his home track. This weekend Self will be a top competitor in the first ARCA race at the Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway in over 20 years.

DMWT_AWS15Self heads to the second Short Track Challenge race coming off of two top five finishes. The young driver is no stranger to short track racing and has proven to be one of the top short track drivers in the series. Many of Self’s top five finishes in his Rookie Championship season came at short tracks such as, Berlin Raceway, Lucas Oil Raceway and Salem Speedway. Not only did Self excel at these ARCA Racing Series short tracks but, he also gained short track seat time during the Pro Late Model races that were added to his 2014 season race schedule. Though the Nashville track is new to the driver, his experience will ensure that he will be a force to be reckoned with on Saturday.

Since the Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway hasn’t seen an ARCA race in over 20 years, the track will be new for many drivers and ARCA fans. Here are some things Austin found during the test he had a few weeks back and some general facts about the track: Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway in an eighteen degree banked oval track. The track converted to a half-mile paved oval in 1957 when it became a NASCAR series track. The track was later extended in 1969 and is currently 0.596-miles in distance.

“I really like the race track. It’s a race track that you have to search for the line a lot on. It’s really unique and reminds me a lot of the old short track in San Antonio that we used to race Pro Late Models at. The 98 AM Technical Solutions Ford was working really well at the test. It’s a new track for us but it’s also a new track for everyone else in ARCA. Might have to make a few adjustments here and there. I know Matt Weber and the 98 crew has worked really hard since Mobile to prepare for this race and I know we’ll have a great car to work with when we show up Saturday!” – Austin Wayne Self

AWS_98CamoFans will have the chance to meet Austin during the on track autograph session from 5:15 – 5:45 pm CDT. Nashville will mark the final race with a Special Edition AWS Hero Card. The 98 AM Technical Solutions Ford Fusion will also be sporting some new graphics in honor of the troops. Fans are encouraged to stop by for pictures with Self and the 98 car, and to get a hold of the limited Special Edition Hero Cards during the autograph session.

The Troop Aid 200 begins at 8:00pm CDT and will be broadcast live on arcaracing.com via a new pay-per-view program. Live timing and scoring presented by Pirate Energy will also be available at arcaracing.com. Tune into Self’s Facebook and twitter for behind the scenes updates throughout the race weekend.

Austin Wayne Self Back at the Home Track

Austin Wayne Self returned to his home track for the first time since moving to Mooresville, NC to further pursue a professional racing career. The 2014 ARCA Rookie of the Year competed in the Pro late Model race at Central Texas Speedway on Saturday, March 28th. This was the young driver’s first time back in a Late model since the beginning of the ARCA Racing season. Self was excited to be home and back at CTS where his stock car career took flight. He even pulled off a top-five finish.

AWS_Dont' Mess with TXSelf’s return to the local Austin area race track attracted long-time fans and sponsors to the race event on Saturday. Among those supporting the young driver were the owners and guests of the popular energy shot drink, Pirate Energy. The Pirate Energy group cheered Self on as he piloted the #07 Pirate Energy Pro Late Model and even hosted an after-party after the race action to celebrate the team’s top 5 finish.

The fourth place finish wasn’t so easily earned however. Self struggled with mechanical issues throughout the day. “The last time this Pro late model saw a track was at the race in Georgia that we competed at a few months ago. With ARCA testing in Nashville making my late model practice schedule tight, I don’t think we really had a chance to work out all the kinks. The team worked extremely hard to repair damage taken on in Georgia and I know with a little more track time before, we would have had the best car out there. We still did a great job and I know we all had fun and that’s what’s most important to us for these CTS races,” explained Self.

Stands_SunsetDespite having trouble getting through turns during the race Self was able to pick up positions during the race and put on a show for the crowd. Starting in the 7th position Self quickly took the #07 Pirate Energy car to the top. Charging forward and taking on other drivers on the inside Self battled to the second position and remained there for the majority of he race. A late caution came out causing the rest of the pack to catch back up with the leaders. Some shuffling during the restart put Self back in the fourth position with only a few laps to go. Even without the win the #07 team received praises for the exciting racing they displayed from fans and partners. Newcomers to the track became race fans for life and that really is what the sport is all about.

The next race that Self and the #07 Pirate Energy car will compete in will be Saturday, April 4th at the Fairgrounds Speedway in Nashville. Fans can follow Austin on Facebook and Twitter to catch announcements about live broadcasting for this event and for behind the scenes photos and videos.

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Self Heads Back to His Roots for The First Race of the Season at His Home Track

Austin Wayne Self heads back to his home tack this weekend for it’s first race event of the 2015 season. During his busy ARCA Racing Series schedule Self still wanted time throughout the season to come back to his roots. His team decided to add five of the nine Central Texas Speedway race events to his 30-plus, race schedule. It’s Self’s way of reminding himself where this “Road to NASCAR” journey got started a few years back. It’s also an excuse for the Texas native to go home every once in a while to spend some time with friends and family since moving to North Carolina.

LateModel“I always love coming back to Texas to race the Pro Late Model races at CTS. I get good seat time and experience but it still feels like a quick break from the busy ARCA schedule. A lot of my original fans are here too so I always enjoy getting to visit with them when they come to the track! It’s cool to hear their stories about following my races on TV. They make me feel like a local celebrity”– Austin Wayne Self

While Self considers coming home for the CTS race a quick break, his schedule doesn’t seem to be letting up any. Self will travel to Nashville to test the #98 AM Technical Solutions Ford that he pilots in the ARCA series. He will return to Texas only to hop into the seat of his #07 Pirate Energy Pro Late Model to practice Friday evening and then race Saturday, March 28th.

“The CTS races are fun for me and my family and friends. Since I’m not running the full series, there’s a way more laid back feel. It’s competitive but it’s more stress free compared to my ARCA races. I love my ARCA races too but, competing for two Championships in that series puts a little bit more pressure on you. People always ask what I do in my spare time and this is it. If I’m not in an ARCA car I find something else to race around in” – AWS

Self_Win_CTSThis will be the first race that local Texas fans will be able to meet and greet with Austin since receiving his 2014 SCOTT Rookie of the Year Title award. Fans can also expect a familiar local energy shot drink to be featured on this year’s #07 Pro Late Model. Pirate Energy representatives will be making their way to CTS to watch their car take laps around the track. The Pirate Energy girls will of course be there as well to hand out sleep deprived drivers, crews and fans a tasty energy boost.

Self won the final Pro Late Model race of the 2014 CTS season. He hopes to spark a winning streak and start 2015 off right. Self currently sits 3rd in Championship points in the ARCA Series after just two races. He also holds the fourth position for the series’ new Short Track Challenge. A win at CTS this weekend would give Self great momentum going into the second short track race of the ARCA season at Nashville. It will be a race that local Texas race fans will not want to miss!

 

Follow Austin on facebook and twitter for behind the scenes updates, pictures and videos from tracks all around the country.

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Self Earns First Top 5 Finish of the Season, Moves Into Third Place for Championship Points

Austin Wayne Self finished out the first race of the Short Track Challenge in the top five, giving him premier positioning for the remainder of the challenge races. It was looking like a final showdown between Austin and Grant as they checked out on the field after the last round of pit stops. But a late race caution allowed the field to catch up and make the finish a door-slamming, tire burning battle for the top 5.

USS AlabamaThe starting line up was determined by 2014 owner’s points due to rain cancellation of qualifying giving Self the opportunity to start on the pole. Within the first few laps Self dropped behind Grant Enfinger. “I learned a lot running behind Grant at the beginning of the race. Seeing which lines he was using helped me out later in the race.” – AWS

The green flag racing didn’t last long as the 69 car went rolling off the track in turn one, jumped a barrier and found itself among fan vehicles in the parking lot! After the driver’s safety was confirmed the green flag dropped again and the #98 AM Technical Solutions, Pirate Energy Ford was rolling. Self continued to shadow the veteran leader until lap 52 when he would come on to pit road under the sixth caution of the race. The #98 pit crew kept Self in for an extended pit-stop to fix a brake fan. The team ended up removing the fan and ducts and sent Self back out to track in the 17th position.

There was no denying the talent of the young driver when he returned to the track. Self skillfully began to pass other drivers one by one until he returned to the front of the pack and took over the lead on lap 143. “Fans and guests of the #98 Pirate Energy Ford were going wild when Austin got back up to the front and took over the first position. It was one of the most entertaining parts of the race for the Asian American Store Owners Association President and members that Pirate Energy brought to the race!” Explained Matt Donovan, AMDMS Sponsorship and Partner Relations Manager.

Austin and Crew“I have to give all the credit for our performance here to the shop, and our crew. The 98 AMTS Ford was the best car at the track. We were better than anyone on long runs and should have won this thing. I let Grant control all the restarts and just got caught off guard when he didn’t go early on the last big one with 23 to go. That opened the door for the 25 car to drive into my left quarter panel. Even though he couldn’t wreck me he burned up my left rear tire and we didn’t have enough grip to come back and battle for the win. I think the 25 car made a few enemies at this race, driving dirty and causing several incidents during and after the race. Probably not the best strategy for the second race of the season. I’m proud that the 98 crew kept their composure.” – AWS

 

Except for pit cycle shuffles, the race consisted primarily of the 98 and 23 car battling up front. During Self’s final pit stop, Crew Chief Matt Weber made the call to put on their last set of 4 tires. A move that paid off as Austin came through the field to take the lead. 12 laps later the rest of the leaders made a stop to take their last fresh tires and to race each other through the field.

Mobile Test“I felt like we had the car to beat Grant with to end his streak. Some hard racing gave the team some things that they needed to work through during pit stops and they did an awesome job! Even though we weren’t able to get the W, crossing the line fourth was a great accomplishment for our second race and I feel we have a great amount of momentum heading into Nashville. I think we might even end a streak and start one of our own.” – AWS

 

After the first two races Austin Wayne Self sits third in ARCA Championship Points, 110 points behind the leader. Self looks to increase his points count at the next ARCA race in Nashville on April 11th but before then Self will hopping into the Late Model seat, first at his home track in Texas and next in Nashville. Hometown fans can visit Austin, get autographs and watch him race at Central Texas Speedway on March 28th.

Tickets to the race on sale at CentralTexasSpeedway.com. Stay tuned for more updates about Austins trip back to Texas.

 

Self Preps for a Southern Alabama Showdown

Austin Wayne Self will return to Mobile for the second race of the ARCA season on March 14, 2015. Last year, Self finished 12th at the half-mile oval race track in Mobile, AL. Self plans to improve upon his race results from last season. From lap one of last year’s race, Self was running with a broken right shock. Self said, “We got into a lot of people at Mobile just trying to make it around the track. We got into Grant, Thomas Praytor, and who knows who else. I was definitely an obstacle for cars to get around just because I couldn’t keep the car from running up the track.” This time Self plans to be a force to be reckoned with but for very different reasons.

Mobile TestThe team’s latest trip to Mobile International Speedway had Self grinning from ear to ear. “We had some trouble at the first testing round of Mobile. We only had the car on track for a few hours before we had some mechanical issues. That put a damper on our weekend and we immediately made plans to return for the second round, and man am I glad we did,” Self explained. The #98 team tested with the new ARCA bodies and Ilmor motors and the car was bad fast!

“Even with the car trouble that I had at Mobile last year, I finished 12th. With all of my short track experience and a car like the one we’re rolling back into MIS with, I know we’re going to be up front giving the Alabama boys a run for their money at their home track.” – AWS

Speaking of short track experience, the ARCA Mobile 200 will mark the debut of a new Championship opportunity within the ARCA series, The Short Track Challenge. The Short Track Challenge will include 11 of the ARCA Racing series’ short track races (tracks with a distance of one mile or less). This Championship will create a whole new dynamic in the series. Many drivers will be competing for the dual championship, fighting to take home two trophies from the ARCA banquet at the end of the year and Austin Wayne Self is one of those drivers.

With his pre-ARCA career experience being primarily on short tracks, this challenge might as well have been made for the young driver. Self will stay on top of his short track game throughout the season with a 12-pack of Late Model races in his 2015 season schedule. There is no replacement for seat time and Self plans to have plenty of it. Self and the #98 AM Technical Solutions Ford team will take advantage of this double dipper opportunity to gain points towards the ARCA Championship and Short Track Challenge.

Mobile practiceAnother first to keep an eye on in Mobile: this will be the first short track race that the team uses the new ARCA car body for, so getting a handle on how the aerodynamics of the car will come into effect was crucial. Self’s Crew Chief, Matt Weber had this to say about their test at Mobile:

“Testing at Mobile went well, we threw a lot of changes at Austin to get his feedback about how the car responded and we feel we have created a very consistent car for when we come back for the race.“

“I’m really excited about the car we’re bringing to the race. I know the Alabama guys always feel confident here but I think we’re going to bring it to them this time. Someone’s got to keep Grant from repeating his win streak.” – AWS

Prior to race day on March 14th, Self will participate in several events during the ARCA Mobile 200 week in Mobile, Al. This list of events will include the autograph session in the USS Alabama Aircraft Pavillion on Thursday, March 12th. Haulers and cars will be on display along with a pit crew exhibit from the hours of 4:00 – 6:00pm. The Autograph session will take place from 5:00 – 6:00pm. Fans are encouraged to come by to meet the drivers and their team members. Tours of the USS Alabama battleship and submarine will also take place during this special event!

Practice will be held on Friday, March 13th from 2:30 – 3:15pm and from 4:15 – 5:00pm. Qualifying will begin at 7:00pm. This race will not be televised so fans are encouraged to follow the action on the ARCA website homepage where they will have access to live timing and scoring presented by Pirate Energy.

pirateSelf will be welcoming some new fans during the race weekend as well. “I’m really excited about our sponsor, Pirate Energy hosting some guests at this race too. We always love when we can introduce people to a new sport. It’s always fun to show them around the garage area, tell them about the car and how we prep for a race and then hopefully put on an awesome show later in the day or night with a great race.” – AWS

“Pirate Energy Shots are thrilled and honored to be a part of the AWS team for the Mobile Race!  Along with our Pirate Energy sales team will be our guests – members of the Southeast Asian American Store Owners Association, including President Bharat Patel.  We wish good luck to Austin and his entire race team!” – Jeff Carpenter, COO/SVP Blue Matrix Labs

Stay tuned this week for more updates from the AWS team including info about upcoming radio interviews and special events.

 

 

Self and Team Reflect on Daytona Race, Plan Improvements for Talladega

Austin Wayne Self competed in this past weekend’s ARCA Lucas Oil 200 at Daytona International Speedway as part of the speedway’s Speedweeks program. Self arrived at track for the first time in the 98 AM Technical Solutions, Pirate Energy Ford. With experience and honors under their belts, such as 2014 ARCA Rookie of the Year and 2014 ARCA Championship, Self and the MMM team were confident in an impressive Daytona performance ahead.

AW_MM GarageWhile they were in fact confident, the 98 team experienced some difficulty in getting the car up to speed during the first practice rounds on Thursday. Self came away with a slower overall average time than what the team had been looking for. Because the team spent a lot of time in the garage, Self didn’t get hooked up with the larger groups during practice which affected his drafting strategy and lap times. The obstacles continued during Friday’s practice when the 98 AM Technical Solutions Ford spent some more time in the garage during open practice hours while the crew fixed a radiator issue. Self found himself in a slower qualifying group which would make qualifying with a top time a challenge. Self finished at the top of his qualifying group but the top time in that group only earned him a 27th starting position for the race.

“It would have been really easy to get discouraged after qualifying in the further half of the pack for our first race and I might have been a little more worried had this been one of the shorter tracks. But, at Super Speedways anything can happen. You see guys go from dead last to the top 10 in only a few laps. Daytona is all about air and finding the line with advantage so we were still confident in our ability to get to where we needed to be come race time.” – Austin Wayne Self

Daytona_3WideSelf definitely put on an exciting show making his way through the field throughout the race. Towards the second half of the race Self found himself in some bumpy situations and at one point, going four wide through a turn,

“We were already going three wide and we came up on a lap car that was at the bottom of the track going into the turn. All I could think was, ‘Ohhh man this ain’t good’ and the 69 car came up into me a little bit to make room to get around the lap car and I moved up into Tom then back down into the 69. I was like a pin ball being bumped back and forth!” – AWS

Self was finally able to get drafting help with about 12 laps remaining, following teammate Mason Mitchell up towards the front. With cars lined up behind him Self was able to get the push he needed, “Daytona is an air battle. You have to get positioned between other cars to get the air flow going just right to give yourself the push you need. Usually there are two lines and either line can get the advantage so whenever you choose a line to jump into you’re kind of gambling on which one you think will start to move more. Then if you get pushed out of the line or stuck in the middle you find yourself losing positions fast. That happened to a few guys at the end of the race including me. I was up to P6 and all of a sudden a new line formed and there wasn’t an opening for me so I just started floating backwards. Not much I could do.” –AWS

Daytona_4CarPackLeaderSelf’s Crew Chief, Ryan “Pickle” London has this to say about the team’s performance at Daytona, “I was very happy with the performance of the car. The guys worked extremely hard on getting a brand new car together for Daytona and it was fast. Daytona is all about drafting partners and when we got into the right group, we were one of the fast ones. Coming out of Daytona with a 15th finish was good. It was Austin’s first race there with a brand new car and motor package so I am pleased. Talladega will be even better I’m sure. You have to learn to plate-race and this was only Austin’s second plate-race so we will improve for sure.”

Though he experienced some bad luck towards the end of the race Self was still able to finish the race in one piece and with a top 20 finish. Not to mention he put on one exciting show going three and four wide through the turns during several laps. A fifteenth place finish is a position to be proud of for a first time run at the challenging Daytona Speedway but, this driver knows that he can do better. Fifteenth is not where the team or driver wants their 98 car to be and they are coming to Mobile hungry for a “W”.

The Daytona, Lucas Oil 200 will re-air TONIGHT at 9:00PM Eastern on Fox Sports 2. Don’t miss the exciting beginning to the 2015 ARCA season!

 

Other re-airing dates for the Daytona, Lucas Oil 200 presented by Menard’s will be: Wednesday, February 18th at 10:00am eastern on Fox Sports 2 and Thursday, February 19th at 10:00am eastern on Fox Sports 1.

Self Heads to Daytona for First Race of the 2015 ARCA Season

Austin Wayne Self will compete in his first ARCA Racing Series race of the 2015 season this Saturday at Daytona International Speedway. Coincidentally, the first race of the IMG_8096ARCA-Daytona Test 12-19-20-14season will also be Self’s first race on the Daytona track. While Self has practiced on the speedway in the past, he was unable to compete in last year’s race because he did not meet the ARCA age limit required to compete on speedways and race tracks that are over one mile long. Another accomplishment Self will be able to check off his list once the race is completed will be his first race with his new race team, Mason Mitchell Motorsports.

Not only will the Lucas Oil 200 presented by Menard’s mark many firsts for Self, but it will also mark his final “Rookie” race. The 2014 SCOTT Rookie of the Year will be considered a rookie for one last time since he has yet to compete at Daytona. Self will look to win one more SCOTT Rookie Challenge as well as gain his first ARCA Series win to put him in the lead for the season championship points early.

“I’m really excited for this weekend’s race at Daytona. We’ve worked really hard during the off-season to get to this point. I think everyone will be looking at the MMM team to see what we’ve got. When you have the 2014 ARCA Rookie of the Year and 2014 ARCA Champion racing and working together as a team, you’re definitely a threat in the competition. We ran really well during the Daytona practice session in December and January. It’s time to take what we learned during those sessions and apply them during the race. It will be my first time racing Daytona so a few nerves here and there but, I’m excited to get back in the 98 AM Technical Solutions Ford and work with my teammate to the finish.” – Austin Wayne Self

Fans can expect to see a lot of Austin around the track as he will participate in several public IMG_8610 ARCA Daytona Test 1-16-15appearances and special events during the Lucas Oil 200 and NASCAR Speedweeks weekend. Self plans to exchange Valentine’s Day cards with his young fans during the Open ARCA garage hours and autograph sessions, as well as special edition Hero Cards during an appearance at the Ford Racing display. Fans that are unable to attend the race this Saturday in Daytona will gain an all-access pass through Self’s Facebook and Twitter page. Behind the scenes pictures and videos will be shared regularly through both platforms throughout the race weekend.

The all-access pass continues through Live timing and scoring presented by Self’s sponsor, Pirate Energy on the ARCA Racing Series’ website homepage. Keep up with practice and qualifying times and of course, with live race updates. Fans that want an up close look of the Daytona race can tune in to FOX Sports 1 at 4:00PM est to watch the race LIVE. Self will be one of a handful of drivers sporting an in-car camera and roof-cam. This will be a race that fans won’t want to miss!

For more updates and news out of the AWS Racing camp, please visit the AWS website as well as Facebook and Twitter pages:

 

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@AustinWSelf

That’s a Wrap! AWS and the 22 Team Finish Out the 2014 Season with a Bang

Austin Wayne Self and the 22 team ended the 2014 ARCA Racing season in a heart stopping fashion. Self’s side-by-side racing around the one and a half mile track had fans on the edge of their seats as he drove hard for the first position during a restart.

“The car stuck so good in turns one and two. Turns three and four had been the better turns for us all night long so I knew we had it. If we could get by the 23 on that first lap after the restart with only 27 laps to go we would take the checkered. We had been fast all night, made up some spots during pit stops, everything was lining up.” – AWS

AWSSelf and the 22 team started the race in the 7th position. Due to poor weather the time set aside for qualifying was used as practice time and owners points determined the starting line up. With a great starting position and successful history at the Kansas Speedway, the team was confident. Self took advantage of the restarts caused by a few blown tires and cars making contact with the wall by gaining several positions. After pit stops and a few restarts Self found himself restarting in the second position with only 27 laps to go. The field had completed several laps under caution while clean up crews cleaned oil from the track. Self took this time to communicate with his crew chief and spotter to come up with a strategy for the restart.

With a strategy set, Self was as ready as ever for the restart. Self stayed side by side with the 23 car on the inside of turns one and two, confident that he would stick through three and four and take over the lead on the front stretch. Kansas Speedway had other plans for Self as he lost grip into turn four. The car got loose for only a second but that was all it took. The air took Self and turned him as he tried to save the car. It looked as though he may be able to do just that until drivers following close behind took a low line and made contact with Self, sending him back up the track and into the wall. The final hit was the worst as the driver of the 06 failed to reduce his speed and flew by other cars in the field, straight into the 22 of Self. To see footage of the crash you can visit this link.

Self walked away from the wreckage healthy. While he did take a trip to the care center (required for all drivers after a wreck in which they are not able to drive the car off the track) he was cleared and allowed to spend the remainder of the race with his team in the ARCA Garage. Even without a finish at Kansas, Self remains the leader in the Rookie of the Year Point Standings. While the Rookie of the Year title will not be officially awarded until the ARCA banquet takes place in December, Self and his team celebrated the great accomplishment of leading the points for this award. It was a major goal that they had set forth at the beginning of the 2014 season.

Kansas AutographsWith the ARCA Racing season finale at Kansas Speedway completed, Austin Wayne Self secured a 6th place overall season standing with 5 top 5’s and 13 top 10’s. AWS had an average finish of 10th overall. Most impressively Austin Wayne Self secured points at the conclusion of Kansas allowing him to lead the Rookie of the Year standings.

Self said, “It’s been a really good year, I learned a lot and we met our goal. We said Rookie of the Year for our first year, and a championship in 2015. I learned how to race at the speedways and use the air to my advantage. I studied the air and studied the racing, and tried different things and that’s what this season was about. Just because this season is wrapped up, doesn’t mean I’ll be relaxing. We have some big news coming in the next few weeks and I’ll be racing throughout the off season. This is the time to raise our game and prepare for 2015. I am just excited to tell everyone about our 2015 plans.”

“I really want to thank our sponsor AM TECHNICAL SOLUTIONS for coming out and supporting me at Kansas, and throughout the entire season. Their involvement in my racing has been an incredible blessing and I am thankful for their support. Also thanks to the team at Cunningham Motorsports who has given me the tools to pursue my racing career and develop my skills.  Finally I am thankful for the ARCA racing staff and team for providing a premiere competitive series for me to race in. It’s been a great year and I’m ready to get back at it in 2015.”-AWS

As mentioned before, Self will find himself in the seat a few times during the off season. Visit his website to view his upcoming schedule and for more updates on what’s to come for AWS in 2015.

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www.awsracing.com

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Lay It All Out in Kansas

qualifying gridAustin Wayne Self and the Cunningham team will have more riding on their run at Kansas than expected after a tough run at Kentucky last weekend. All of the ARCA teams had a rough start to their race week when practice on Tuesday was canceled late in the afternoon due to poor track conditions. When the 22 team returned to track on Wednesday for the rescheduled practice sessions they had expected their day to run a little more smoothly.

“I knew the track was going to be a bit of a challenge after taking those first few laps on Tuesday in the ARCA trucks. It was my first time seeing the track and I knew it would take some getting used to but man, I didn’t expect to have as much trouble with it as we did.” – AWS

Self said, “It felt like I had racer’s block or something. We kept trying new ways of getting in and out of the corners, different lines, you name it and we just couldn’t find that extra second we needed.” By the end of practice the team ran their fastest lap and had more confidence that they would get the set up right by race time. Self was able to pick up another second come practice time on race day but many of the drivers including Self felt that Kentucky was a completely different track compared to what they had practiced on during the scheduled ARCA sessions on Wednesday. Self qualified in the 16th position. The team had started in worse positions and kept their determination to finish the race well. Unfortunately the team struggled to get the set up just right during the race.

“It was a rough weekend for the entire Cunningham team. After two top 5 finishes in Salem, leaving Kentucky with 2 finishes outside the top 10 definitely wasn’t what we were looking for and it’s not a good example of what our team is capable of.” Crew Chief Chad Bryant said. “We just have to put this weekend behind us and focus everything we have on our last race in Kansas to break into the top 5 in Season Points.”

Self thanked his fans and his sponsor Ultra One Cleaner and Degreaser for coming out to support him at the race. He was disappointed that he wasn’t able to give them a better show but looks forward to giving them one in Kansas.practice

Self finished in the 12th position and trails the 5th position in Season Point Standings by only 140 points.  The team will be working even harder in the week prior to the race to get the car just right. Kansas is their final chance to gain enough points to push them into the top 5 for the season. A top 5 points finish paired with a possible Rookie of the Year Award would be a huge accomplishment for Self and the Cunningham team for their first full season together.

Kansas will be televised live on Fox Sports 2 at 7:30pm Central on Friday, October 3rd. Self and the 22 AM Technical Solutions Dodge are sure to be a top contender and it won’t be a race you want to miss. Help cheer the team on by following on Austin’s Facebook and Twitter pages.

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