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Joe Graf Jr. has big plans for Nashville return

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – One year ago, Joe Graf Jr. (@JoeGrafJr.) headed to Fairgrounds Speedway Nashville nursing a broken left foot which left the Chad Bryant Racing driver scooting around the half-mile short track utilizing a scooter.

Inside the race car, Graf despite the injury left nothing on the table.

While a productive race didn’t result in the best finish, Graf returns to the historic short track this weekend for Saturday night’s General Tire Music City 200 presented by Inspectra Thermal Solutions hoping for vindication.

“I really enjoyed the Music City 200 last year,” said Graf who heads to Nashville seeking his third straight top-10 finish. “I learned a lot throughout the race, and we were in contention to battle for the win at the end of the race but unfortunately lost a transmission with under 20 laps to go.

“We had a very productive test on Monday, and I feel very confident going into Saturday’s race.”

Graf’s upbeat demeanor for the fifth race of the 2019 ARCA Menards Series season is contributed to a recent successful test with his No. 77 Chad Bryant Racing team alongside teammate Corey Heim which saw Graf’s turn fast laps negotiating both short and long runs.

Prepared to earn his second career ARCA victory this weekend, Graf feels his experience last year at Nashville will play into his hands not to mention the recent momentum of two top-10 finishes at Salem Speedway and last Friday’s superspeedway rumble at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway.

“We’re making some noise – we just need to shake off the bad luck we’ve been having,” added Graf. “We overheated at Daytona because of a plastic bag, got bitten on pit road at Salem and ran over some debris late in the race at Talladega and both of those scenarios I feel like cost us an opportunity for top-five finishes.

“We were able to recover though and made the best out of the situations. Because of the hard work of Chad (Bryant) and the guys – I feel prepared to go to Nashville and execute and do it well.”

For the fifth straight race, EAT SLEEP RACE, a racing lifestyle apparel company headquartered in New Jersey returns as the primary sponsor of Graf Jr.’s No. 77 Ford Fusion for the 200-lap race.

Since 2001, EAT SLEEP RACE has offered a full product line including accessories and apparel for men’s and ladies. As one of the pioneers of motorsports apparel, the brand has deep roots in the racing industry and was created to offer fresh designs for all racing enthusiasts.

“I’m really proud of how we’ve been able to get the EAT SLEEP RACE name out there in a short amount of time,” added Graf. “I’m really happy to be representing them as their brand really fits my lifestyle.

“We’ve done a lot when it comes to activation at the race track and on social media and it helped the bigger picture. Our plastic bag awareness campaign from Daytona was a monstrous success and we’ll look to do things like that throughout the season.”

Talladega wasn’t big just because of EAT SLEEP RACE last week. On Friday, Richard Childress Racing announced that 20-year-old Graf would compete in a limited NASCAR Xfinity Series schedule this year – while also serving as the team’s marketing and communications intern through a partnership with Graf’s college, New York University.

“This is an amazing opportunity that wouldn’t be possible without NYU and RCR working together,” sounded Graf. “For my internship to be with one of the most recognizable teams in NASCAR is unbelievable. To then think that I will also have the opportunity to drive the No. 21 car is really exciting.”

“I am pumped for the opportunity to learn all facets of this business,” continued Graf Jr. “From inside the cockpit to the corporate office. The quality of the RCR organization speaks for itself, especially celebrating their 50th anniversary this season. I am eager to learn, contribute and compete.”

Graf’s crew chief and car owner Chad Bryant says Nashville is another opportunity for his young driver to find his niche and continue to build more confidence ahead of the summer stretch.

“Joe’s done a tremendous job the last few weeks,” added Bryant. “We’ve had much better race cars than the box score shows – but Joe hasn’t gotten discouraged and instead continued to drive his guts out in the race car.

“He showed a lot of speed at Nashville last year and during our test – so hopefully, we can go back there this weekend and capitalize on that with a top-five finish or a win on Saturday night.”
For more on Joe Graf Jr, please like him on Facebook (Joe Graf Jr.) and follow him on Twitter (@JoeGrafJr) and visit his brand new website at JoeGrafJr.com.

For more on Chad Bryant Racing, please like them on Facebook (Chad Bryant Racing) and follow them on Twitter (@ChadBryantRace). Also, visit the new ChadBryantRacing.com.

The General Tire Music City 200 presented by Inspectra Thermal Solutions (200 laps | 119.2 miles) is the fifth of 20 races on the 2019 ARCA Menards Series schedule. Practice begins Sat., May 4 with an hour and a half session from 1:15 p.m. – 2:45 p.m. General Tire pole qualifying is set for later in the day at 4:15 p.m. The race in the 67th consecutive ARCA season is set to take the green flag later that night at 8:00 p.m. The event will be televised live on MAVTV, while ARCARacing.com will stream live timing and scoring throughout the entire weekend festivities. All times are local (CT).

Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway | General Tire 200 Race Recap

Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway | General Tire 200 Race Recap
Team: No. 77 EAT SLEEP RACE Ford Fusion
Driver: Joe Graf Jr.
Follow the Team: @ChadBryantRace; @JoeGrafJr
Start: Ninth
Finish: 10th; Running (76 | 76 laps completed)
Unofficial Driver Points Position: Fourth

Joe Graf Jr. Quote: “Man, I wish the rain would have held off. We had a pretty good No. 77 EAT SLEEP RACE Ford Fusion early in the race – but we struggled as the run progressed in Turns 3 and 4 getting the car to grip towards the top.

“Chad (Bryant, crew chief) made an adjustment there after we came in for tires and I would have liked to see how it would have played out under green. We got trapped a lap down during the long green flag run – but I think we had the speed to get back on the lead lap and hustle back to the front.

“Our performance from start to finish though is a step in the right direction moving forward and we’ll take our first top-10 finish of the season and carry on to Talladega in a few weeks.

“I can’t thank EAT SLEEP RACE and all of the Chad Bryant Racing team for their continued support, it means a lot.”

Next Up: General Tire 200 at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway on Fri., Apr. 26, 2019.

For more on Joe Graf Jr, please like him on Facebook (Joe Graf Jr.) and follow him on Twitter (@JoeGrafJr) and visit his brand new website at JoeGrafJr.com.

For more on Chad Bryant Racing, please like them on Facebook (Chad Bryant Racing) and follow them on Twitter (@ChadBryantRace). Also, visit the new ChadBryantRacing.com.

About EAT SLEEP RACE:

EAT SLEEP RACE (eatsleeprace.com) is a racing lifestyle apparel company based out of New Jersey.  Since 2001 the brand has offered a full product line including accessories and apparel for men’s and ladies.  As one of the pioneers of motorsports apparel, the brand has deep roots in the racing industry and was created to offer fresh designs for all racing enthusiasts.

The company has expanded to now offer a dedicated children’s product line of apparel and accessories branded as the Fast Kids Club with it’s hot selling ABC book for future race car drivers.

CONTACT: [email protected]

Joe Graf Jr. returns to Talladega on a strict agenda

TALLADEGA, Ala. – Joe Graf Jr. (@JoeGrafJr) returns to Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway for Friday afternoon’s General Tire 200 trenched in the headlines of the ARCA Menards Series annual return to the 2.66-mile superspeedway.

Last year, Graf and Zane Smith were involved in the closest finish in the 67 years of ARCA competition history which left the world wondering which driver won.

The margin was so narrow it was a statistical dead heat, the margin of victory on the computerized scoring monitors showing 0.000 seconds. Only a video replay and the photo finish camera were able to determine Graf finished second by a matter of millimeters.

Having to settle for second in a gut-wrenching finish left Graf having to wait 12 months before an opportunity at redemption aboard his No. 77 EAT SLEEP RACE Ford Fusion.

“I’m excited to get back to Talladega this weekend,” said Graf. “Obviously, everyone knows how close the finish was and I still think I won, but we can’t dwell on last year, there’s a race to be won on Friday afternoon and I want to win it.”

A sophomore on the ARCA Menard Series tour and on the heels of his first top-10 finish of 2019 two weeks ago at Salem (Ind.) Speedway, Graf heads into the final restrictor plate race of the season fourth in the championship standings and an opportunity to make some gains on the championship lead in his third superspeedway start.

“Restrictor plate racing is very methodical,” added Graf. “It’s not exhausting physically – but mentally it can wear you out. A lot happens in a hurry and you have to be on your game every lap for about two hours.

“Luckily, I have a good spotter and a good crew chief, and I think we can go to Talladega this weekend and start showing everyone that we have the potential to be championship material.”

For the fourth straight race, EAT SLEEP RACE, a racing lifestyle apparel company headquartered in New Jersey returns as the primary sponsor of Graf Jr.’s No. 77 Ford Fusion for the 76-lap race.

Since 2001, EAT SLEEP RACE has offered a full product line including accessories and apparel for men’s and ladies. As one of the pioneers of motorsports apparel, the brand has deep roots in the racing industry and was created to offer fresh designs for all racing enthusiasts.

Talladega will showcase the end of EAT SLEEP RACE’s two-month campaign to promote plastic bag awareness after a grocery plastic bag landed on the front of Graf’s race car in the season-opening race at Daytona in February.

The plastic bag ended up overheating the race car forcing an unscheduled pit stop for the team and dashed any opportunity to win the race. Since then, ESR has invested a $1,000 cash into the campaign hoping to educate the public. Entries can still be received at EATSLEEPRACE.com/win until 11:59 p.m. Thursday, April 25.

“EAT SLEEP RACE has really put a lot of effort into our wheelhouse and I’m excited to have them onboard for their Talladega debut,” offered Graf Jr. “We are working with them on several different projects and they have been instrumental in making our social media campaign surrounding Daytona a success.

“We’re doing a lot behind the scenes and already launched a Joe Graf Jr – Talladega shirt that is available online. A lot of good things going on for me both on and off the track.”

Graf’s crew chief and car owner Chad Bryant says Talladega is the perfect opportunity for the No. 77 EAT SLEEP RACE team to get redemption and gain more momentum ahead of the summer stretch.

“Talladega was heartbreaking last year but has definitely given us something to shoot for this year,” added Bryant. “If we can shake the mechanical gremlins and avoid any debris – particularly plastic bags – we should be in good shape this week.

“Joe knows what he needs to do when it comes to restrictor plate racing. From a team aspect, we just need to do our job on pit road and hope that when push comes to shove we’re in a position to be exactly where we were last year but just be on the other side of the outcome.

“A win would benefit us all.”

To bring exclusivity to his No. 77 EAT SLEEP RACE Ford Fusion, Graf will carry the Fast Kids Club on-board camera for his second start at Talladega Superspeedway. The Fast Kids Club is the designated youth division of EAT SLEEP RACE.
For more on Joe Graf Jr, please like him on Facebook (Joe Graf Jr.) and follow him on Twitter (@JoeGrafJr) and visit his brand new website at JoeGrafJr.com.

For more on Chad Bryant Racing, please like them on Facebook (Chad Bryant Racing) and follow them on Twitter (@ChadBryantRace). Also, visit the new ChadBryantRacing.com.

The General Tire 200 (76 laps | 202 miles) is the fourth of 20 races on the 2019 ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards schedule. Practice begins Fri., Apr. 26 with an hour and twenty-five-minute session planned from 8:30 a.m. – 9:55 a.m. Group qualifying is set for later in the day at 2:35 p.m. The race in the 67th consecutive ARCA season is set to take the green flag later in the day shortly after 5:00 p.m. The event will be televised live on FOX Sports 1 (FS1), while ARCARacing.com will stream live timing and scoring throughout the day’s festivities. All times are local (Central).

Joe Graf Jr. relives last year’s closest finish in ARCA Menards Series history at Talladega Superspeedway

MOORESVILLE, N.C. — In less than two weeks, Joe Graf Jr. will be headed back to Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway, a track that was the background for the closest finish in the 67-year history of the ARCA Menards Series.

The margin was so narrow it was a statistical dead heat, the margin of victory on the computerized scoring monitors showing 0.000 seconds. Only a video replay and the photo finish camera were able to determine Graf finished second by a matter of millimeters.

Almost a year later, Graf Jr. relives the heart pounding drama of Talladega debut and those exhilarating final laps.

Q: It’s hard to believe it’s been a year since the most thrilling finish in ARCA history. Have you thought about the race in the last twelve months?

A: Not really to be honest. I moved past it and went on to the next race. Over the last twelve months lots of things have changed.. I am competing for a championship and at the time last year I had no idea I was going to run the rest of the 2018 season. The finish at Talladega opened opportunities for me and I’m grateful.

Q: Lets go back to the beginning. You didn’t even know that you were running at Talladega until three days before the race. What was the first thing you thought when you drove to the tunnel and saw the speedway?

A: It was the first time I was ever there. All I could think was how big and massive the place was. It was kind of surreal. Being one of my favorite tracks growing up added to the moment.

Q: From the moment you arrived until the first time you buckled into your Chad Bryant Racing race car what was going through your mind?

A: I was mentally preparing. Visualizing being on the track, going through all of the details I needed to comprehend. I spoke with my crew chief and my spotter to make sure I was ready to hit the track.

Q: The moment has arrived. You back out of your pit garage and start towards pit road. What’s going through your mind?

A: I was just thinking of what I needed to do when I get out there. For me, the adrenaline doesn’t begin until the race starts but there was definitely the WOW factor. I was thinking at the time I am a short track driver getting ready to race on a track that large.

Q: The official gives you the go ahead on pit road. You start to head out onto the 2.66-mile superspeedway. What does a driver do…go flat out, pace themselves?

A: Well you go through the gears and get up to speed and listen to your spotter about where to run and we try different things to make the car faster. It was exhilarating but once I was full speed my racing instincts took over.

Q: Take us through a lap at Talladega from a driver’s perspective.

A: Ok, you cross the start finish line with your foot to the floor. A Talladega if you are by yourself you can actually run anywhere you want. It really doesn’t get that interesting until you are in the draft. You actually are preparing for turn one right after the start finish line.

What makes Talladega and a track like Daytona so different is this when you race a short track the g-forces move you to the right in the seat at Talladega with the banking it forces you down in the seat and that is something you really have to get used to. It’s the same in every turn.

Q: 80 laps is a long way on a 2.66-mil oval. What was your plan for the race?

A: We were just going to keep our nose clean and help me learn the draft since I had never felt it before. Once I was comfortable, we just hung in the back to miss the big wreck, which we fortunately did. With around five laps to go Riley Herbst and I were running something like 17 and 18th and we just took off to the front.

Q: It’s race time…you are on the pace lap with cars in front of you, cars behind you all preparing for 80 intense laps. Take us through the start.

A: Most important you have to make sure you get through the gears perfectly and wind it up to 7200 RPMs through every gear or you will just be slow and get run over. My adrenaline was pumping, and I just had to focus on staying clean as we got up to speed.

You’ve got to do your job and get up front and run good for your team and marketing partners. You can’t let your feelings distract you, if you do it can create a mistake.

Q: You ran a smart race. Your spotter Brian Cranmer was on top of the grandstand. What role does the spotter play at such a huge facility?

A: Definitely different from a smaller track. His job was to communicate with other spotters and teams to find drafting partners. He found Riley Herbst and that was a key to getting me to the front.

Q: People talk about the draft. Can you really feel that sensation?

A: It feels like you pick up speed, like you have more motor. Its nothing crazy unless you are in a big pack and the air moves you around and that gets a little sketchy. During the race Natalie Decker’s car shut off and she was six inches off my bumper, that was pretty intense. When cars wreck in front of you everything is happening at 200 miles per hour and you are definitely on the edge.

Q: So, there are five laps to go and you are running around 18th. You strike a deal with the 18 car of Riley Herbst. Then what?

A: It was time to go. We just hooked up and our cars worked together. It was really cool passing all those cars on the way to the front.

Q: Let’s jump ahead…it’s the second green-white flag and you are on the front row on the outside. You and Zane Smith are racing like there is no tomorrow and on top of the that you might run out of fuel, what are you thinking?

A: This is a big deal, a really huge opportunity. I was hoping I didn’t run out of fuel and going into turn three I doored him pretty good and thought we were going to wreck. But we weren’t done.

Q: Turn four: You and Zane (Smith) bump again. Are you running on adrenaline or is your mind crystal clear as to what you need to do?

A: A little bit of both. I was doing everything I could do to win. I was trying to get back out in front of him. I was on the outside…my heart was pumping pretty good.

Q: You head off Turn four nearly ¾ of a mile to the checkered flag, describe that moment.

A: I knew I was ahead coming off of turn four and it felt like an eternity to just make it to the tri-oval and the start finish line was even farther away.

Q: A few hundred feet from the start finish line you and Zane (Smith) are playing race car pinball with each other… Take us through the last few hundred feet.

A: I was just fighting. I was done thinking about fuel and it was all about what can I do to win.

Q: What was the first thing you did or said when you crossed the start finish line?

A: I yelled hell yeah…To this day I totally believe that I won.

Q: Brian (Crammer) came on the radio and said Zane (Smith) had won…what were your emotions?

A: Well, actually they said he won, then that he didn’t win and then that he did. I was pretty disheartened.

Q: One year later what are your thoughts on the event and how much are you looking to get back to Talladega?

A: Not many people had heard of Joe Graf Jr. prior to that race. My Dad was at an event in Charlotte and he talked to Martin Truex Jr. about the race and Martin said oh yeah, your son ran a great race, so it’s kind of made people aware of who I was.

It will be so cool to be back there…I kind of feel that Talladega owes me one. Guess we’ll have to see what happens.

For more on Joe Graf Jr, please like him on Facebook (Joe Graf Jr.) and follow him on Twitter (@JoeGrafJr) and visit his brand new website at JoeGrafJr.com.

For more on Chad Bryant Racing, please like them on Facebook (Chad Bryant Racing) and follow them on Twitter (@ChadBryantRace). Also, visit the new ChadBryantRacing.com.

Kentuckiana Ford Dealers 200 Race Recap

Salem (Ind.) Speedway | Kentuckiana Ford Dealers 200 Race Recap
Team: No. 77 EAT SLEEP RACE Ford Fusion
Driver: Joe Graf Jr.
Follow the Team: @ChadBryantRace; @JoeGrafJr
Start: Fifth
Finish: Ninth; Running (100 | 101 laps completed)
Unofficial Driver Points Position: Fourth

Joe Graf Jr. Quote: “Man, I wish the rain would have held off. We had a pretty good No. 77 EAT SLEEP RACE Ford Fusion early in the race – but we struggled as the run progressed in Turns 3 and 4 getting the car to grip towards the top.

“Chad (Bryant, crew chief) made an adjustment there after we came in for tires and I would have liked to see how it would have played out under green. We got trapped a lap down during the long green flag run – but I think we had the speed to get back on the lead lap and hustle back to the front if the rain would not have come.

“Our performance this weekend from start to finish though was a step in the right direction moving forward and we’ll take our first top-10 finish of the season and carry on to Talladega in a few weeks.

“I can’t thank EAT SLEEP RACE and all of the Chad Bryant Racing team for their continued support, it means a lot.”

Next Up: General Tire 200 at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway on Fri., Apr. 26, 2019.

For more on Joe Graf Jr, please like him on Facebook (Joe Graf Jr.) and follow him on Twitter (@JoeGrafJr) and visit his brand new website at JoeGrafJr.com.

For more on Chad Bryant Racing, please like them on Facebook (Chad Bryant Racing) and follow them on Twitter (@ChadBryantRace). Also, visit the new ChadBryantRacing.com.

About EAT SLEEP RACE:

EAT SLEEP RACE (eatsleeprace.com) is a racing lifestyle apparel company based out of New Jersey.  Since 2001 the brand has offered a full product line including accessories and apparel for men’s and ladies.  As one of the pioneers of motorsports apparel, the brand has deep roots in the racing industry and was created to offer fresh designs for all racing enthusiasts.

The company has expanded to now offer a dedicated children’s product line of apparel and accessories branded as the Fast Kids Club with it’s hot selling ABC book for future race car drivers.

Joe Graf Jr. ready to “EAT SLEEP RACE Salem” with Chad Bryant Racing

SALEM, Ind. – Upbeat about a recent ARCA Menards Series test at Salem (Ind.) Speedway with his Chad Bryant Racing, sophomore driver Joe Graf Jr. (@joegrafjr) heads to the historic short track eyeing his second career series victory and an opportunity to put his season back on track in Sunday’s Kentuckiana Ford Dealers ARCA 200.

Sitting fourth in points and within reach of second place, Graf Jr. is ready to get down to business and in the spirit of his marketing EAT SLEEP RACE – the rising star is eager to “EAT SLEEP RACE SALEM” aboard his No. 77 Ford Fusion.

“Yeah, I’m pretty hungry to go out there and have a good run on Sunday,” offered Graf who will make his third ARCA start at Salem Speedway. “We had a pretty good test. Did a lot. Learned a lot and I think we should be in good shape on Sunday afternoon.”

In his previous two starts at the half-mile bullring, Graft Jr. narrowly missed top-10 efforts with back-to-back 11th place performances in April and September respectively.

“I was frustrated with 11th – because I felt like we were so close to top-10 runs both times,” recalled Graf. “Salem isn’t a walk in the park when it comes to a particular driving style. Its relatively rough surface demands a pretty physical race where you have to get up on the wheel and drive.

“I’m prepared to get up and drive my No. 77 EAT SLEEP RACE Ford Fusion to the front and stay there. We had a decent recovery at Five Flags – with an 11th (chuckles) – but I’m ready to get our Chad Bryant Racing team back inside the top-10 where we belong.”

For the third straight race, EAT SLEEP RACE, a racing lifestyle apparel company headquartered in New Jersey returns as the primary sponsor of Graf Jr.’s No. 77 Ford Fusion for the 200-lap race.

Since 2001, EAT SLEEP RACE has offered a full product line including accessories and apparel for men’s and ladies. As one of the pioneers of motorsports apparel, the brand has deep roots in the racing industry and was created to offer fresh designs for all racing enthusiasts.

“Super pumped to have EAT SLEEP RACE back on board this weekend at Salem,” offered Graf Jr. “We are working with them on several different projects and they have been instrumental in making our social media campaign surrounding Daytona a success.

“I’m also really happy about my own clothing through EAT SLEEP RACE and look forward to seeing that thrust as the season goes on. A lot of good things going on for me both on and off the track.”
Graf’s crew chief and car owner Chad Bryant says Salem is the perfect opportunity for the No. 77 EAT SLEEP RACE team to get back on the throttle and gain some momentum ahead of the summer stretch.
“Joe has always done a good job at Salem in the past – but he’s determined to take that experience and use it to the fullest potential on Sunday,” said Bryant.

“He will be one of the most experienced drivers in the field and that should play into our hands. A win on Sunday would be huge for me, Joe, the guys and EAT SLEEP RACE.”

To bring exclusivity to his No. 77 EAT SLEEP RACE Ford Fusion, Graf will carry the Fast Kids Club on-board camera for his third start at Salem Speedway. The Fast Kids Club is the designated youth division of EAT SLEEP RACE.

For more on Joe Graf Jr, please like him on Facebook (Joe Graf Jr.) and follow him on Twitter (@JoeGrafJr) and visit his brand new website at JoeGrafJr.com.

For more on Chad Bryant Racing, please like them on Facebook (Chad Bryant Racing) and follow them on Twitter (@ChadBryantRace). Also, visit the new ChadBryantRacing.com.

The Kentuckiana Ford Dealers 200 (200 laps | 111 miles) is the third of 20 races on the 2019 ARCA Menards Series schedule. Practice begins Sat., Apr. 13 with an hour and a half session from 11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. General Tire pole qualifying is set for later in the day at 3:00 p.m. The race in the 67th consecutive ARCA season is set to take the green flag the following day, Sun., Apr. 14 beginning at 2:00 p.m. The event will be televised live on MAVTV, while ARCARacing.com will stream live timing and scoring throughout the entire weekend festivities. All times are local (ET).

Chad Bryant Racing pleased with Salem Speedway ARCA test

MOORESVILLE, N.C. – With the third race of the 2019 ARCA Menards Series season less than a week away, Chad Bryant Racing is putting the final touches on their two-car team hoping its enough to propel the Mooresville, N.C.-based team into Victory Lane in the Kentuckiana Ford Dealers ARCA 200 on April 14.

With drivers Joe Graf Jr. (@JoeGrafJr), Corey Heim (@CoreyHeim3) and Ty Majeski (@TyMajeski) eager for some on-track time at the historic half-mile oval, the veteran ARCA team spent a majority of the test session focused on handling and stability on their No. 22 and No. 77 Ford Fusions respectively.

For Graf Jr., driver of the No. 77 EAT SLEEP RACE Ford Fusion, his return to Salem Speedway is an opportunity to better his two eleventh place finishes at the Southern Indiana short track in his third start.

“The test was productive,” said Graf. “Salem Speedway is such a stout race track. You can’t have any fear getting around there and you best be ready to get on the throttle in Turns 3 and 4. If you aren’t kissing the wall, you’re not getting around Salem fast enough.

“You need to be good speed wise coming out of Turn 2 onto the backstretch and then get that launch into Turn 3 that can propel you through Turn 4 and back to the start-finish line. We kept working on that throughout the day. Whether we were on old tires or new tires, you have to be pretty for every condition.

“At the end of the day, I felt we had good speed and hope to come back a little quicker next weekend.”

Heim who made his ARCA debut at Five Flags (Fla.) Speedway last month is seeking his second consecutive top-five finish. And while Salem can be brutal to rookie drivers, the Georgia driver quickly adapted with the guidance of crew chief Paul Andrews.

“It’s a fast place,” offered Heim. “Joe (Graf Jr.) said handling is the key to success at Salem and he wasn’t kidding. For me, it was first finding my comfort and then getting that good balance on our No. 22 Speedway Children’s Charities Ford Fusion.

“Once I had that comfort – we went right into our mock simulation modes and I overall we were pretty satisfied. I think Salem is one of those places you’re going to have to chase the handling of your race car from start to finish. And I think the weather will be a factor too.

“We’ve got a good baseline for the car and look to build on that next weekend.”

CBR general manager and crew chief Andrews said he was satisfied with the outcome.

“The test went very good and we had great weather too,” Andrews said. “Chad Bryant Racing has a good baseline setup and we made it better with Corey throughout the day. We had good speed in race and mode and even better speed in qualifying trim and that’s all positive.

“Joe’s car seemed to be equally fast with Chad (Bryant) on a mission Can’t wait to get back there and see how it all turns out.”

For team owner and crew chief Bryant – he is poised to return to Salem next weekend and earn his second ARCA victory since taking ownership of what was Cunningham Motorsports at the beginning of the 2018 season.

“We have some fast cars,” offered Bryant. “But we always want to be faster. The drivers worked hard and Ty (Majeski) was a good asset to help both drivers. A lot of ARCA teams tested at Salem and no doubt will come back better, so we need to too.

“It would be great to get Joe a good finish to keep his season pointed in the right direction and a strong effort for Corey in his first ARCA start at Salem will only give the No. 22 team more momentum for the next race.

“It’s going to be a competitive race – but no reason we can’t be contenders.”

For more on Joe Graf Jr, please like him on Facebook (Joe Graf Jr.) and follow him on Twitter (@JoeGrafJr) and visit his brand new website at JoeGrafJr.com.

For more on Corey Heim, please like him on Facebook (Corey Heim Racing) and follow him on Instagram (@corey.heim) and Twitter (@coreyheim3).

For more on Chad Bryant Racing, please like them on Facebook (Chad Bryant Racing) and follow them on Twitter (@ChadBryantRace). Also, visit the new ChadBryantRacing.com.

The Kentuckiana Ford Dealers 200 (200 laps | 111 miles) is the third of 20 races on the 2019 ARCA Menards Series schedule. Practice begins Sat., Apr. 13 with an hour and a half session from 11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. General Tire pole qualifying is set for later in the day at 3:00 p.m. The race in the 67th consecutive ARCA season is set to take the green flag the following day, Sun., Apr. 14 beginning at 2:00 p.m. The event will be televised live on MAVTV, while ARCARacing.com will stream live timing and scoring throughout the entire weekend festivities. All times are local (ET).

About EAT SLEEP RACE:

EAT SLEEP RACE (eatsleeprace.com) is a racing lifestyle apparel company based out of New Jersey.  Since 2001 the brand has offered a full product line including accessories and apparel for men’s and ladies.  As one of the pioneers of motorsports apparel, the brand has deep roots in the racing industry and was created to offer fresh designs for all racing enthusiasts.

The company has expanded to now offer a dedicated children’s product line of apparel and accessories branded as the Fast Kids Club with it’s hot selling ABC book for future race car drivers.

Five Flags (Fla.) Speedway | ARCA Pensacola 200 Race Recap

Team: No. 77 EAT SLEEP RACE | GRIME BOSS Wipes Ford Fusion
Driver: Joe Graf Jr.
Follow the Team: @ChadBryantRace; @JoeGrafJr
Start: 11th
Finish: 11th; Running (198 | 200 laps completed)
Driver Points Position: Fifth

Joe Graf Jr. Quote: “Obviously, the finish wasn’t what we were hoping for in our No. 77 EAT SLEEP RACE | GRIME BOSS Wipes Ford Fusion. We made some strides during the race, but with the limited number of cautions, we weren’t able to get to pit road and keep adjusting on the car to put ourselves in the top-10.

“We are a winning race team and we are winners together, so an 11th place finish is unacceptable. Our team, however, is resilient and we will bounce back at Salem Speedway next month.

“I can’t thank EAT SLEEP RACE, GRIME BOSS Wipes and all of the Chad Bryant Racing team for their continued support, it means a lot.”

Next Up: Kentuckiana Ford Dealers 200 at Salem (Ind.) Speedway on Sat., Apr. 14 2019.

For more on Joe Graf Jr, please like him on Facebook (Joe Graf Jr.) and follow him on Twitter (@JoeGrafJr) and visit his brand new website at JoeGrafJr.com.

For more on Chad Bryant Racing, please like them on Facebook (Chad Bryant Racing) and follow them on Twitter (@ChadBryantRace). Also, visit the new ChadBryantRacing.com.

About EAT SLEEP RACE:

EAT SLEEP RACE (eatsleeprace.com) is a racing lifestyle apparel company based out of New Jersey.  Since 2001 the brand has offered a full product line including accessories and apparel for men’s and ladies.  As one of the pioneers of motorsports apparel, the brand has deep roots in the racing industry and was created to offer fresh designs for all racing enthusiasts.

The company has expanded to now offer a dedicated children’s product line of apparel and accessories branded as the Fast Kids Club with its hot selling ABC book for future race car drivers.

About Grime Boss

Grime Boss is a product of Nice-Pak. Nice-Pak, founded in 1957, is the global leader in the design, manufacturing, marketing and distribution of premium quality branded and private label pre-moistened wipes. Nice-Pak is a global company with over 2,500 associates and six plants with approximately 3MM square feet of manufacturing and distribution space in strategically located facilities around the world.

Headquartered in Orangeburg, NY, Nice-Pak has a track record of introducing innovative products that help to improve people’s health and wellness through the consumer, healthcare and professional business channels. Nice-Pak’s brands include NICE ‘N CLEAN®, GRIME BOSS®, SANI-HANDS®, PET-NAPS ® and WET-NAP®.

Visit: http://www.grimeboss.com

Chad Bryant Racing gets back to business at Five Flags Speedway

PENSACOLA, Fla. – After nearly a four-week break the ARCA Menards Series returns to action for Saturday night’s ARCA Pensacola 200 where Chad Bryant Racing (CBR) drivers Joe Graf Jr. and Corey Heim look for strong performances at Five Flags (Fla.) Speedway.

To prepare the team for the second race of the season, both drivers and former ARCA champion Grant Enfinger tested at the historic half-mile facility, where they dialed in their Ford Fusions hoping to give them an added boost prior to a full day of practice, qualifying and the race on March 9.

For Graf Jr., driver of the No. 77 EAT SLEEP RACE Ford Fusion, the race is an opportunity to get his sophomore season back on track after a plastic bag caused the engine to overheat during the season-opener at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway last month, hindering the 20-year-old driver’s finishing position.

“I’m looking forward to Five Flags this weekend,” said Graf Jr. “It’s been a busy couple of weeks for me – but I’m eager to get back behind the wheel of my No. 77 Eat Sleep Race Ford Fusion and have an opportunity to get my second ARCA win.”

A rising star in stock cars, Graf Jr. says the test in Pensacola last weekend helped him get a footing for the track’s abrasive surface and a chance to get acquainted with his new teammate.

“The test went good for us,” Graf Jr. added. “Five Flags is a new venue for ARCA and that’s a great thing but for all of us, but it will be a very competitive race. We spent last week tweaking with the setup in both qualifying and race mode to make sure we were in a good spot to come back and unload.

“If we can find another tenth or two, we’ll be in great shape. Getting to the end of the race will be important for us as we want a shot to bring home the trophy.”

After joining CBR at Daytona, EAT SLEEP RACE, a racing lifestyle apparel company headquartered in New Jersey returns as the primary sponsor of Graf Jr.’s No. 77 Ford Fusion for the 200-lap race.

Since 2001, EAT SLEEP RACE has offered a full product line including accessories and apparel for men’s and ladies. As one of the pioneers of motorsports apparel, the brand has deep roots in the racing industry and was created to offer fresh designs for all racing enthusiasts.

“Super pumped to have EAT SLEEP RACE back on board this weekend at Pensacola,” offered Graf Jr. “We are working with them on several different projects and just launched a new campaign centered around our Daytona adversity and much more, it’s going to be a fun season.”

Heim will take the reins of the No. 22 Speedway Children’s Charities Ford Fusion and look to impress in his ARCA Racing Series debut under the direction of crew chief Paul Andrews.

“I’ve been counting down the days to get to Pensacola,” said Heim, a native of Marietta, Ga. “We had a really productive test with the guys last week and I’m looking forward to picking up where we left off this weekend.”

As for a goal for his ARCA debut on Saturday, Heim isn’t being overconfident – but believes his CBR team portrays the equipment and personnel to win.

“I’d like to think that I can win the race on Saturday night,” he said. “Joe (Graf Jr.) could too. Chad Bryant Racing always brings fast cars to the track. The guys have been great to work with and we’re proud to have Speedway Children Charities on the car this weekend. Just need to have a good showing to give us some momentum to our next race at Salem.”

Andrews who led the team in the test said he was impressed with Heim’s efforts.

“We unloaded fastest of the cars that were there,” said Andrews. “We spent the day working on race runs and set up options to get feedback and to get to know Corey’s driving style. At the end of the night, we made a mock qualifying run that had good speed and feel like we can go back this weekend and be faster.

“Most of all, Corey has experience at Five Flags Speedway in Snowball Derby competition and that will be an asset to all of us this weekend.”

For more on Joe Graf Jr, please like him on Facebook (Joe Graf Jr.) and follow him on Twitter (@JoeGrafJr) and visit his brand new website at JoeGrafJr.com.

For more on Corey Heim, please like him on Facebook (Corey Heim Racing) and follow him on Instagram (@corey.heim) and Twitter (@coreyheim3).

For more on Chad Bryant Racing, please like them on Facebook (Chad Bryant Racing) and follow them on Twitter (@ChadBryantRace). Also, visit the new ChadBryantRacing.com.

The ARCA Pensacola 200 presented by Inspectra Thermal Solutions (200 laps | 100 miles) is the second of 20 races on the 2019 ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards schedule. Practice begins Sat., Mar. 9 with an hour and a half session from 12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. General Tire pole qualifying is set for later in the day at 3:30 p.m. The race for the 67th consecutive ARCA season is set to take the green flag later that night at 7:00 p.m. The event will be televised live on MAVTV, while ARCARacing.com will stream live timing and scoring throughout the entire weekend festivities. All times are local (CT).

About EAT SLEEP RACE:

EAT SLEEP RACE (eatsleeprace.com) is a racing lifestyle apparel company based out of New Jersey. Since 2001 the brand has offered a full product line including accessories and apparel for men’s and ladies. As one of the pioneers of motorsports apparel, the brand has deep roots in the racing industry and was created to offer fresh designs for all racing enthusiasts.

The company has expanded to now offer a dedicated children’s product line of apparel and accessories branded as the Fast Kids Club with it’s hot selling ABC book for future race car drivers.

Joe Graf Jr. ready for Daytona ARCA debut

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – The last time ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards driver Joe Graf Jr. (@joegrafjr) participated in a restrictor plate ARCA race – he found himself as a runner-up in the closest finish in series’ history last April at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway.

This weekend, Graf Jr. hopes to have a role of reversal as he treks to Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway for Saturday afternoon’s Lucas Oil 200 driven by General Tire.

Joining the ARCA tour after Daytona last year, Graf Jr. will compete for the series’ championship aboard Chad Bryant Racing’s No. 77 Ford Fusion and with tough competition anticipated for the 20-race crown, Graf Jr. is ready to get down to business at the “World Center of Racing.”

“This is certainly a bucket list item to race at Daytona,” said Graf Jr. who finished eighth in the 2018 points standings despite missing one race. “We’re racing for a championship this season and a good run on Saturday will help our efforts. I know though when it comes to plate racing, finishing can sometimes come down to luck.”

Paired with 2016 ARCA championship crew chief and team owner Chad Bryant for his sophomore season of competition, Graf Jr. says he taken the steps to ensure he’s ready for the battle ahead and believes the guidance of Bryant will continue to accelerate his learning curve in ARCA.

“During the offseason, I really started to work out hard and make some adjustments in my lifestyle to make sure I’m ready to do my part this year,” Graf Jr. added. “I know that Chad (Bryant) and the rest of the Chad Bryant Racing (CBR) team are going to do their best to bring fast race cars to the track and I need to make sure I’m giving the team more than 100 percent behind the wheel.”

Graf Jr. and the Mooresville, N.C.-based team participated in the two-day open test session at the 2.5-mile superspeedway in mid-January and while his No. 77 EatSleepRace.com Ford Fusion wasn’t at the top of the charts, the 20-year-old knows that this weekend is when speed and finesse count most.

“We learned a lot at the test,” he continued. “Chad and the guys made many adjustments during the two-day test and with every lap on the track we were gathering data to get back. We’ve made a lot modifications to our car since then and I’m eager to get on the track and see what we can do.”

As for his goals for his Daytona debut, Graf Jr. says he wants to earn his second career ARCA win – but also knows he’ll have to be realistic if that can’t happen.

“We all go to the track every weekend with the intention and goal to win,” Graf Jr. sounded. “We have the cars and people to win many races this year, we just need to see how the race pans out. If we don’t win and can leave Daytona with a top-10 finish – we’ll take that as a positive for the big picture.”

After joining CBR at the Daytona test, EAT SLEEP RACE, a racing lifestyle apparel company headquartered in New Jersey returns as the primary sponsor of Graf Jr.’s No. 77 Ford Fusion for the 80-lap race.

Since 2001, EAT SLEEP RACE has offered a full product line including accessories and apparel for men’s and ladies.  As one of the pioneers of motorsports apparel, the brand has deep roots in the racing industry and was created to offer fresh designs for all racing enthusiasts.

The company has expanded to now offer a dedicated children’s product line of apparel and accessories branded as the Fast Kids Club with it’s hot selling ABC book for future race car drivers.

“It means a lot to me to continue my relationship with Eat Sleep Race at Daytona this weekend,” said Graf. “Being from New Jersey, we share a common bond and have great ideas on how we can enhance our partnership as the season rolls on. Looking forward to carrying their colors this weekend at Daytona!”

Bryant says Graf Jr.’s focus during the test and his approach to the impending season has the morale at CBR in a good place.

“We’re excited to have Joe for another season,” Bryant said. “He is so focused on going out there and succeeding, there doesn’t appear anything can stand in his way. We will continue to do our job as a team and support one another on and off the track and plan to have a great season starting at Daytona this weekend.”

In 19 ARCA races, Graf Jr. has one career ARCA win (Berlin Raceway, August 2018), six top-five and eight top-10 finishes. He earned a career-best qualifying effort of fourth at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway in May 2018.

For more on Joe Graf Jr, please like him on Facebook (Joe Graf Jr.) and follow him on Twitter (@JoeGrafJr) and visit his brand new website at JoeGrafJr.com.

For more on Chad Bryant Racing, please like them on Facebook (Chad Bryant Racing) and follow them on Twitter (@ChadBryantRace). Also, visit the new ChadBryantRacing.com.

The Lucas Oil 200 driven by General Tire (80 laps | 200 miles) is the first of 20 races on the 2019 ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards schedule. Practice begins Thurs., Feb. 7 with a two-hour session from 4:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. A final practice session has been etched in on Fri., Feb. 8 from 9:30 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. Group qualifying is set for later in the day at 3:30 p.m. The season-opener for the 67th consecutive ARCA season is set to take the green flag on Sat., Feb. 9 shortly after 4:30 p.m. The event will be televised live on FOX Sports 1 (FS1), while ARCARacing.com will stream live timing and scoring throughout the entire weekend festivities.

About EAT SLEEP RACE:

EAT SLEEP RACE (eatsleeprace.com) is a racing lifestyle apparel company based out of New Jersey.  Since 2001 the brand has offered a full product line including accessories and apparel for men’s and ladies.  As one of the pioneers of motorsports apparel, the brand has deep roots in the racing industry and was created to offer fresh designs for all racing enthusiasts.

The company has expanded to now offer a dedicated children’s product line of apparel and accessories branded as the Fast Kids Club with it’s hot selling ABC book for future race car drivers.

Contact: [email protected]