Tyler Roahrig is our guest on Fan4Racing NASCAR Weekend Preview, Thursday, May 18, 2017 at 9 pm ET. Call 929-477-1790 or tweet @Fan4RacingSite or @MoparMJ8 with any questions or comments during our LIVE broadcast.
Last week, Tyler Roahrig tested with Mason Mitchell Motorsports at Toledo Speedway in preparation for his ARCA Racing Series debut behind the wheel of the No. 78 in the Menards 200 presented by Federated Car Care on Sunday, May 21st. Although Roahrig is new to ARCA Racing and MMM, the Plymouth, Indiana native has a lot of experience at the fast half-mile track in Toledo, OH.
Roahrig, won the Glass City 200 in 2016, the biggest Outlaw Late Model event of the year at Toledo.
“Happy to be back,” said Roahrig during a break in testing at Toledo last week. “We’ve been pretty successful here in the outlaw car. Decided to take the next step into the ARCA Series.”
Testing with his team owner, Mason Mitchell, gave Roahrig a chance to learn about racing an ARCA Late-Model in preparation for his debut on Sunday. His Outlaw Late Model is considerably lighter and there is an adjustment to racing between the two series.
“Talked to Mason a little bit about it,” said Roahrig. “He gave me some tips. We’re just going to kinda creep up on it…take it easy at first and by the end of the day hopefully we’ll be running pretty fast.”
With high expectations for his debut at Toledo, Roahrig is confident in his MMM team.
“Looking for a top-five,” says Roahrig. “But honestly, the Mason Mitchell Motorsports team has been really fast at the short tracks…or all the tracks honestly, so I wouldn’t rule anything out at this point. I really want to win. I’m not saying I’m expecting to but I really want to.”
The idea of Roahrig and Mitchell racing together came about through mutual relationships in racing.
“I was in North Carolina buying some parts for my race car. I was with Bob Blount…he knows Kevin Reed, the crew chief here (at MMM). We just stopped into see him and that’s what put this whole plan into motion. A lot of people have come together to make this happen.”
ARCA Racing isn’t the only event on Roahrig’s schedule this month. As it turns out, he’s a sprint car racer too. Roahrig is competing in the Little 500 at Anderson Speedway, the night before the 101st running of the Indianapolis 500.
“Well, you know I’ve been racing sprint cars the last couple years…really enjoy racing them” says Roahrig. “Drive for a team called Speed Chasers Incorporated. Actually…after this test, I’m going to make the three hour drive to Anderson to test the sprint car. Gunna be going from the ARCA car to a sprint car in the same day…looking forward to it.”
Taking a page from the Indy 500, the Little 500 is starting 33 cars at three abreast.
The 2014 ARCA Racing Series champion, Mason Mitchell will miss being behind the wheel of the No. 78 this weekend, as he enjoys he role now as team owner and mentor.
“I wish I was racing, but no, we’re just out here helping Tyler get used to this thing a lot better,” said Mitchell during testing last week at Toledo. “Looking forward to helping these guys out…getting back in victory lane next weekend.”
“This place is so cool…it’s one of my favorite tracks. It’s really technical with hitting your marks, especially in three and four. Me and Tyler have been talking about that a lot…he’s got a ton of laps around here, and so far so good.”
The Menards 200 presented by Federated Car Care marks the third among 11 races that make up the Sioux Chief Short Track Challenge.
The Menards 200 presented by Federated Car Care is Sunday, May 21st at 2 pm ET with television coverage on FOX Sports 1. Timing and Scoring is on ARCARacing.com