By KEVIN HARRIS
SPARTA, Ky. —
Frank Kimmel is on the fringe of capturing his 10th ARCA Racing Series championship in his stellar racing career.
The Clarksville native placed ninth in Saturday’s ZLOOP 150 at Kentucky Speedway to record his 20th top-10 finish of the season. The race was postponed on Friday night because of rain.
Kimmel currently leads second-place Mason Mingus, who finished 10th on Saturday, by 315 points in the ARCA standings. Kimmel can clinch the championship by simply making a qualifying attempt for the season-ending Kansas Lottery 98.9 on Friday, Oct. 4 at Kansas Speedway.
“It’s been a special year because of our consistency,” Kimmel said after Saturday’s race.
Kimmel started on the pole at Kentucky after the field was set by the ARCA point standings because Friday’s qualifying session was canceled due to rain. But during practice on Friday, Kimmel got into the wall and had to go to a back-up car.
Kimmel led the first four laps of the race, but he fell back to ninth by Lap 11. He was back to 12th around Lap 40 and the highest he was running after that was sixth.
Corey LaJoie, the son of former NASCAR Nationwide Series champion Randy LaJoie, won for the third time this season. Rounding out the top five were Mason Mitchell, Spencer Gallagher, Grant Enfinger and Chad Boat.
Sellersburg resident Will Kimmel finished seventh as he ran in the top five for most of the race. He drove the No. 22 Messinas-Cunningham Motorsports Dodge on Saturday rather than his usual ride in the No. 69 Ford for Clarksville-based Kimmel Racing. Henryville resident Darrell Basham placed 22nd.
Frank Kimmel remains one victory shy of setting the all-time ARCA wins record. He is currently tied for first place with ARCA legend Iggy Katona with 79 career wins.