Kimmel Racing 2016 Schedule; Will Kimmel Q&A

Posted: Tuesday, January 26, 2016 by Anonymous in

In a mere 19 days, Will Kimmel and the rest of the ARCA Racing Series will open the 2016 season at Daytona International Speedway. Despite some setbacks at a Daytona test on January 16th, Kimmel Racing will be ready for the Lucas Oil 200 on February 13th.

Kimmel is scheduled to race in 12 of the 20 events on the ARCA Racing Series schedule this year, including both Pocono races, both dirt races and the final six races of the season. Here is a look at what Kimmel has in front of him this season (all times are Eastern Standard Time):

  • Daytona Int'l Speedway - Lucas Oil 200 - Saturday, February 13th - 4:15pm
  • Talladega Superspeedway - Talladega ARCA 200 - Friday, April 29th - 6:00pm
  • New Jersey Motorsports Park - NJMP ARCA 150 - Saturday, May 28th - 4:00pm
  • Pocono Raceway - Pocono ARCA 200 - Friday, June 3rd - 5:00pm
  • Michigan Int'l Speedway - Michigan ARCA 200 - Friday, June 10th - 5:00pm
  • Pocono Raceway - Pocono ARCA 125 - Friday, July 29th - 5:00pm
  • Illinois State Fairgrounds - Allen Crowe 100 - Sunday, August 21st - 2:30pm
  • DuQuoin State Fairgrounds - Southern Illinois 100 - Sunday, September 4th - 9:00pm
  • Salem Speedway - ARCA Fall Classic 200 - Saturday, September 10th - 8:00pm
  • Chicagoland Speedway - Chicagoland ARCA 150 - Thursday, September 15th - 8:00pm
  • Kentucky Speedway - Kentucky ARCA 150 - Friday, September 23rd - 8:00pm
  • Kansas Speedway - Kansas ARCA 150 - Friday, October 14th - 8:30pm

A few weeks ago, we asked our followers on Facebook and Twitter to submit questions for Will to answer, we would compile them and include them in the next article. Well, you've been waiting, so HERE are the answers to your burning questions for Will!

How does the E3 Spark Plugs sponsorship affect the season schedule?

"We are pretty much on the same schedule as last year, but we didn't have enough help to go to all the races, we just knew the ones we wanted to do. This year, we know for sure we are racing in 12."

So anything you get from here on out is a bonus?

"We have roughly 80% of what we need to go do it the way we want, which is close enough to be sure of 12 races. We still have the hood and the quarter panels open. But our ability to be this confident about running 12 races at 100% is partly because of what E3 is doing for us."

How many race cars do you have?

"12 total; 11 ARCA cars and one Late Model."

Do you have any plans to run NASCAR Sprint Cup this year?

"No, not really. But, remember, the plans for the Kentucky race last year didn't come up until this time last year. So, the answer to that question would have been the same at this point last year. And Kansas was real last minute, so, I feel that if the opportunity came up again this year, it would be similar to the Kansas deal. Last minute, spur of the moment."

How big of a transition is it between racing a street stock, and NASCAR Sprint Cup car?

"The Cup cars are stuck to the ground a lot more; they have so much downforce, the tracks just sucks the car down. Until the tires go away. Then you get that heavy car feel that you have in a street stock. In a street stock, you have that heavy car, sliding around feeling all the time. So, there are similar characteristics, but it takes 20-30 laps on tires in the Cup car before you get that street stock feel."

Is there one race that is circled on your schedule, that stands out from all the others?

"Normally it is the Salem night race, but this year I'm really looking forward to the DuQuoin Fairgrounds race, because it is under the lights. We've been so good on the dirt, to have the opportunity to run that race under the lights in front of that great crowd, it's going to be a lot of fun."

What is your favorite track? Throughout your entire career, which one is your favorite?
It was difficult to get him to give me ONE, but when you've raced on as many tracks as Will, it's difficult to name just one!

"Salem is definitely towards the top of the list. Anderson is fun." 

Bill reminds Will of Riverview Speedway in Carthage, TN.

"Oh yeah, Carthage. That was fun. It's a quarter-mile track that is banked 24 degrees. Late Model's run laps in the 10's there. Mini-cups are in the 12's."

This next response surprised me, considering Will didn't run road courses growing up.

"Road America (in Wisconsin) is fun, so was Road Atlanta. There aren't a lot of tracks I don't like, but there are some that I'm not as good at. Lucas Oil Raceway in Indy is a good example. It's a great track, but I'm not that good at it. Simply because it's so flat and the turns are so long, and I grew up on high banked, sweeping turns at Salem."

What are your responsibilities for the team, outside of just being the driver?
This one kind of stumped him, so we brought in Bill to help answer.

"As far as the race team goes, the driver is the face of the race team. He takes the responsibility of hunting for sponsors, and in our current situation, Will is his own car chief. It's just the situation we're in, because we're such a small team." 

I personally have seen Will get lunch for his crew members at the shop and sweep up at the end of the day. The list of his responsibilities is long and detailed, but such is life when you are racing for your family run race team. Thanks to everyone who participated in this Q&A, keep your eyes open for more opportunities to interact with Will and the team members throughout the season!