Roseville, Calif. –Bill McAnally Racing brought four teams to Phoenix International Raceway to kick off the 2013 NASCAR K&N Pro Series West season. With of field of 30 cars taking the green, BMR finished with three Toyota Camrys in the top-ten.
Brandon McReynolds of Mooresville (N.C.), driver of the No. 20 NAPA Filters Toyota, was third quick during the first practice session. He was fifth on the timing charts in the final practice and qualified the No. 20 NAPA Filters Toyota Camry on the outside of row four to start the Talking Stick Resort “60”
McReynolds took the green flag and gained two positions by lap 35. The race had five cautions periods. At the final restart, McReynolds dug hard but would finish in 9th. This was his first start in the NKNS West.
“Debris killed us,” said McReynolds. “We would be moving up in the field then the caution would come out and we would have to move back to the last completed lap. All in all, it was a good night for the No. 20 NAPA Filters team. We had a good Toyota Camry capable of a top-three finish. The guys did a great job. I hope to be able to do this again this season.”
Rookie driver Jamie Krzysik from Grand Prairie, Alberta, Canada piloted the No.99 First Choice Pipehandlers Toyota to an eleventh place finish. Krzysik had a strong series debut last fall at All American Speedway running up front and finishing sixth.
“That was so fun,” said Krzysik. The No. 99 First Choice Pipehandlers Toyota started in 18th and the rookie fought some minor handling problems. Crew chief Matt Goslant called Krzysik to pit road under caution and the team went to work adding three rounds in the right rear. Krzysik was up to 16th with 15 laps to go. At the final restart, Krzysik made a hard charge narrowly finishing out of the top ten. “I can’t thank the BMR team enough. I learned a ton this weekend and look forward to racing in the West Series again. And we brought home the No. 99 First Choice Pipehandlers Toyota without damage. She’s ready to get back at it.”
Reigning champion in the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series, D.J. Kennington from St. Thomas, Ontario piloted the No.81 Northern Provincial Pipelines Toyota. This was Kennington’s fourth PIR start in the NKNS West. Kennington qualified the No. 81 Toyota on the outside of row 5. He would record his best PIR West Series finish in 7th.
“I wanted to win this,” said Kennington. “The car was pretty good; just a bit tight. We are sending her home in one piece which is remarkable with the tight racing the fans just saw,” he laughed. “I pride myself in not tearing stuff up.”
“I didn’t listen to my own advice,” he continued. “I was telling the young guns not to overdrive turn one and finally, on the last restart, I finally got it right. We just needed a few more laps. All in all, I am very happy. The boys did a great job.”
Leading the team in the familiar No.16 NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota was Sergio Pena. The 20-year-old from Winchester (VA.), made his NKNS West regular season debut this weekend. He was in the top ten during both practice sessions at PIR. Pena qualified the NAPA Toyota on the inside of row 4.
Lap 5 of the 60-lap race had the No. 16 NAPA Toyota in fifth on the scoring pylon. Fifteen laps later, Pena was in fourth. Sergio radioed into the team at the final restart “let’s see what we can get” and as the checked flag was shown, he would bring home the NAPA Toyota Camry with a top-five finish.
“First point’s race for the season with a new team… I’m happy with the top-five but at the same time I really wanted to win,” said Pena. “There was a lot of banging of fenders out there, one big crash and we came home with not even a scratch. We just needed a few more laps. Our next race will be on a short track in Stockton, California. That will be fun. I am used to the short tracks and look forward to putting the NAPA Toyota in Victory Lane.”
The NASCAR K&N Pro Series West returns to the track May 4 at Stockton (Calif.) 99 Speedway.
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