Battle of Patience Prevails at the Beach in Daytona

Rev Racing NASCAR K&N Pro Series drivers finish in the Top 10 of inaugural event

DAYTONA BEACH, FL (February 20, 2013) – The UNOH Battle at the Beach lived up to its name and proved to be a literal fight to the finish for the Rev Racing drivers and all who competed during the two days of racing here. Once the smoke cleared, the Rev Racing drivers emerged with two Top-5’s and a Top 10 finish.

“It was a very interesting race,” said Bryan Ortiz, who crossed the line in his No. 4 Putinka Vodka Camry in third place and showed he is poised to once again make a run at the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East crown.
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“We started in the middle of the pack and the plan was to save the car for the end,” added Ortiz. “I got spun early and lost a lap which added some pressure. But, we took our time, got the “lucky dog” and once I was back on the lead lap we just worked our way through the field and ended up in third.”

Ortiz’s teammate, Ryan Gifford also made a statement that he’s ready to contend for the championship, as well, by coming in right behind Ortiz in fourth.

“I’m really surprised that we were able to get the No.2 Sunoco/Langley Speedway Toyota Camry into a fourth place finish,” said Gifford. “We didn’t have the fastest car but had watched the other races and knew that if we could just stay out of trouble until the end, we might be in a position to at least get a Top-10. So, coming home fourth, after getting spun and placed a lap down, is a great feeling and a great way to start the season.”
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Their Rev Racing teammate from 2012, who joined them for this event, Kyle Larson was looking to have another good finish until he was hit and spun on the final lap of the race. Larson still managed to bring home a badly damaged Curb Records/Langley Speedway Toyota Camry in tenth.

The Rev Racing NASCAR Whelen All-American drivers, Mackena Bell and Trey Gibson struggled with mechanical issues during Monday night’s race and ultimately finished the event in 26th and 21st position, respectively. Bell, along with her 2013 Rev Racing NASCAR K&N Pro Series teammates, will make her next start at Bristol Motor Speedway, March 16, 2013.

Rev Racing Showcasing Success during Daytona’s Speedweek

Past and present drivers competing in NASCAR Whelen All-American, K&N Pro Series, Camping World Truck and Nationwide events at the Speedway

RevRacing2013Concord, NC (February 15, 2013) – In just three years Rev Racing has indentified and developed two Rookie of the Year winners and won a Championship in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East. Expectations are high as the team prepares to kick-off the 2013 season at Daytona International Speedway starting on Monday, February 18, 2013.

Proving the team’s success is no fluke is the recent announcement that two of its former drivers will be competing full time in NASCAR’s top tier series’. Kyle Larson, a 2012 team member, will be driving full time in the Nationwide Series for Turner Scott Motorsports. Darrell Wallace Jr., a 2010 and 2011 team member, will compete full time for Kyle Busch Motorsports in the Camping World Truck Series. Wallace and Larson will make their season debut on the high banks of Daytona International Speedway on February 22nd and 23rd, respectively.

Wallace and Larson’s graduation to the National Series is proof of the talent housed at Rev Racing and the program’s ability to successfully develop that talent for the next level of racing.

“We are extremely proud of the accomplishments of both Kyle and Darrell,” said Max Siegel, owner, Rev Racing. “While they are both extremely talented drivers, they are a testament to the caliber of athletes being indentified and developed by Rev Racing and the NASCAR Drive for Diversity Program.”

In addition to debuts by Wallace and Larson with their new teams and series, Rev Racing will showcase some of its past and present talent during UNOH Battle at the Beach events at the Speedway.

Mackena Bell will be piloting the No. 4 Langley Speedway Toyota Camry and Trey Gibson, recipient of the 2012 Wendell Scott Trail Blazer award, will be driving the No. 2 Langley Speedway Toyota Camry in the NASCAR Whelen All-American series event on Monday, February 18, 2013 that will air live beginning at 7:00 pm EST on SPEED, MRN, and Sirius/XM. After Daytona, Bell will be racing in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East beginning with the first points race of the season, at Bristol.
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Along with last season’s late model drivers, 2012 NASCAR K&N Pro Series East Champion, Larson, and two of this year’s Drive for Diversity drivers, Bryan Ortiz and Ryan Gifford, will compete in the UNOH Battle at the Beach in the K&N Pro Series race on Tuesday, February 19, 2013, that will air live beginning at 7:00 pm EST on SPEED, MRN, and Sirius/XM.

Larson will be competing for Rev Racing in this single event after earning his way in with wins at Gresham Motorsports Park and Loudon, New Hampshire in 2012. Larson will be driving the No. 69 Curb Records and Langley Speedway Toyota Camry.

Ortiz will be driving the No.4 Toyota Camry sponsored by Putinka Vodka. Ortiz, a native of Puerto Rico, is in his third year driving for Rev Racing and NASCAR’s Drive for Diversity program. After being the runner up for rookie of the year honors, Ortiz is looking to outdo last season’s result and be a contender for the championship. He will be under new direction this year from crew chief Eddie Dickerson.

“I can’t be more excited for the season to start,” said Ortiz. “There has been a lot of work put into the car during the off season. I’m very confident that we will be really good the entire season, with having a crew chief with so much experience like Eddie Dickerson is going to be great. The Battle at the Beach will be extremely important to learn about each other in the first non-points race of the season, which will get us ready for the championship starting in Bristol”.

Gifford is back for his fourth season with Rev Racing and will be maneuvering the No. 2 Toyota Camry sponsored by Sunoco, the Official Fuel of NASCAR.

Gifford the “veteran of the team” is optimistic that this year’s results will mirror his skill and effort. After a mid season crew chief change in 2012 Gifford started having more consistent runs and will continue with Mark Green as his crew chief for the 2013 season.

“In all sincerity, if we can get a little good luck to run Ryan’s way for a change we should have a great season,” said Green. “Tracks like Bristol, Dover and Rockingham suit (Ryan’s) driving style the best and I have confidence that we will be in victory lane this year.”

In addition its primary race sponsors, Rev Racing is grateful for the contributions and continued support provided by Toyota and Toyota Racing Development, Goodyear, Sprint, Nike, L&M Ethanol Maintenance and Contracting, NASCAR Technical Institute, Mobil 1, 3M, JRI Shocks, Wix Filters, Castle, Impact, Mechanix Wear, iRacing, Logitech and Doghouse Systems.

Ryan Gifford aiming for victory lane through NASCAR’s ‘Drive for Diversity’ program

By Mark McCarter for AL.com

GiffordWINCHESTER, Tennessee — There was this unfortunate racing parallel to the Gatorade bucket being dumped on a football coach.

Winchester, Tenn. driver Ryan Gifford makes season debut at Daytona next Monday (Getty Images for NASCAR)

Ryan Gifford had been racing go-karts for a year or so when he finally earned his first victory, on a track in Crossville, Tenn.

“It was so exciting to pull in and see everybody else’s excitement,” Gifford recalled. “But go-kart tracks have a big bucket of water where you clean your tires. They dumped that bucket on me.”

Still, he said, “It was cool.”

Gifford was nine years old or so when he got that baptism.

Now 23, Gifford, a Franklin County (Tenn.) High School grad who attended Middle Tennessee State, is looking for more celebrations.

Gifford is one of the select participants in NASCAR’s “Drive for Diversity” program, to encourage and support drivers of color and women in their racing careers. He’s driving a Toyota in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East and will make his season debut next Monday at Daytona International Speedway.

Gifford was 11th in points last season, with three top-10 finishes in 14 races, after finishing 10th in points in 2011.

“He’s had his share of bad luck,” said Derik Crotts, general manager of Gifford’s Rev Racing team. “He was leading three races last year. But on a restart at Richmond, he spun his tires. Another time, a teammate blew a tire and took him out.

“He definitely has the talent and the personality (to succeed),” Crotts continued. “He’s willing to listen and to learn.”

Gifford, the son of Allen Burnette and the late Michelle Gifford, who died in 2010, got much of his racing inspiration from grandfather Farrell Gifford, who was a drag racer. As a six-year-old, Ryan asked for a junior dragster, but his grandfather said, “Let’s got the go-kart track first and check it out and see if you like it.”

And, said Ryan Gifford, “I automatically fell in love with it.” He got a go-kart from Christmas “and we went wide-open pretty much from there.”

He raced in Toney, Ala., and other go-kart tracks in the area, then graduated to late-model dirt-track cars as a 15-year-old, racing in Moulton, Talladega and tracks in middle Tennessee.

Gifford did well enough to impress Mike Dillon, the vice-president of Richard Childress Racing (and the owner’s son-in-law) to earn a dirt-track ride with Team Dillon, and then earned his way into NASCAR’s diversity program.

“It’s been huge for me,” he said. “Without it I’d be back in Winchester working, just trying to scrounge up enough money to go race. My family’s not been super well-off, so this is a good opportunity from NASCAR. It’s really awesome.”

Contact Mark McCarter at mmccarter@al.com and follow him on Twitter @markmccarter

Ryleigh Lemonds wins her first Arena Race of the 2013 Season

CONCORD, NC (February 6, 2013) Rev Racing’s youngest developmental driver, Ryleigh Lemonds of Yorktown, Virginia, won her first indoor arena race of the season at Richmond Coliseum on Saturday, February 2, 2013.

Lemonds took the lead on lap 4 and held on to win the 30 lap event, which ended a four race winning streak of one of her fellow competitors. Several cautions were displayed throughout the race for various incidents on track but Lemonds set sail creating a 1.162 second lead over her other competitors.

“I am so excited to win my first arena race” said Lemonds in a tweet after her event.

Lemonds is one of two drivers participating in a stand-alone developmental program and youth racing initiative by Rev Racing. She is set to compete again this weekend at the Richmond Coliseum.

Please follow her at @ryleighlemonds for updates on all of her races throughout the 2013 season.

Larson Leads Rev Racing To Daytona

K&N East Champ Among Five Headed To Battle At The Beach
By Jason Cunningham, NASCAR

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Reigning NASCAR K&N Pro Series East Champion Kyle Larson will lead a contingent of five Rev Racing drivers that are slated to head to Daytona International Speedway for the inaugural UNOH Battle At The Beach, Feb. 18-19.

After winning the K&N Pro Series East title for Rev Racing, which fields teams for NASCAR’s Drive For Diversity initiative, Larson will return to the team for the first running of the Daytona short-track showcase. He will be joined by teammates Ryan Gifford and Bryan Ortiz at the .4-mile oval on the backstretch at the “World Center of Racing.”

“We’re excited about the opportunity to come to Daytona and are looking forward to what promises to be an exciting week of racing,” said Rev Racing General Manager Derik Crotts. “We’ve got a great lineup of drivers competing for Rev Racing in both the Late Model and K&N Pro Series events at UNOH Battle at the Beach.”

Larson has a locked-in starting position for the NASCAR K&N Pro Series race as part of the UNOH Battle At The Beach by virtue of series championship and two race wins during the 2012 season. Larson will have one more run with Rev Racing, and although his 2013 plans have not yet been announced, he will not be returning to the team for the coming season to defend his title.

“It’s going to be nice to have Kyle representing Rev Racing one last time before he moves on to bigger venues,” Crotts said. “He’s a special talent and we’re proud to have been a part of his growth and development in NASCAR.”

For Gifford and Ortiz, the opportunity to race at Daytona will provide a jump-start to their return to Rev Racing for the 2013 NASCAR K&N Pro Series East season. The coming campaign will mark the fourth for Gifford in the series while 2013 will be the sophomore season for Ortiz, who finished as the Sunoco Rookie of the Year runner-up to Larson.

“Being that it’s a non-points race, this provided us a unique opportunity to say thank you to some of our 2012 drivers and get things dialed in a little before we head to Bristol,” Crotts added.

Gifford and Ortiz will need to race their way into the K&N Pro Series feature through the qualifying races since they do not have locked-in starting positions. Drivers that won touring series races and championships in 2012 are locked into their respective features in Daytona. All others must qualify through heat races.

In addition to the three NASCAR K&N Pro Series teams, Rev Racing will also take two NASCAR Whelen All-American Series entries to compete in that series’ UNOH Battle At The Beach Late Model event, with Mackena Bell and Trey Gibson as the drivers. The pair ran Late Models together at Hickory Motor Speedway in 2012, and both will have to race their way into the Whelen All-American Series feature at Daytona through the qualifying races.

“We’re going to be rolling out some new paint schemes on our Toyota Camry’s and will have Curb Records sponsoring Kyle for the event,” Crotts said. “We’re also pleased to have Putinka Vodka back behind Bryan Ortiz, and Langley Speedway supporting both Kyle Larson and Ryan Gifford, in addition to our Late Model’s at this race.”