Series Pro Late Model racing and ARCA testing in Florida
He races Pro Late Model cars with engines of about 500 hp and weighing 500 lbs less than NCaTS cars which he is accustomed to. A mixture of veterans and young drivers show up for these extremely competitive events with more than fifty cars trying to make the starting field of 30 to 36 cars based on track dimensions.
The young driver certainly feels that the experience is worthwhile. “The much lighter cars react differently to driver input and I have to learn new tracks. The competition is fierce, with everyone always looking for the last tenths of a second in practice in order to qualify better, as some 20 cars usually go home without running the race.”
At the 46th Snowball Derby held at 5 Flags Speedway (Pensacola, Florida), Alex was in the Top 10 quicker cars in practice before making a mistake and damaging the car late in the last practice session. The team repaired the car but it had lost a little speed in the process, failing to qualify in the 58-car field. Alex had to start from the rear in the Last Chance qualifying race and finished 8th and out of the starting field for the 300-lap final.
Alex impressed a lot of people there with his outright speed and gained from the experience. “The guys are quick and know how to get the most from their car in qualifying. I was doing the same thing when I made a small mistake. But the car and the team are up to speed and I will there too. Bring on the next race!”
After attending the NASCAR prize-giving banquet in Charlotte this coming weekend, Alex will be on track at Daytona on December 19, 20 and 21 to test the ARCA car he will drive in three races in 2014. “The ARCA cars are similar to the older generation Sprint Cup models. Even though the cars are slowed down for Daytona, I will learn about very high speeds and aerodynamics, in preparations for my ARCA races at Super Speedways this season.”