July 30, 2014, Blog, homeslider

Pocono Race Advance

“Pocono is a really difficult track. We struggled here in June. With the win at Daytona, we are able to take some gambles to try to make our cars better. Last weekend, we tried out a new car at Indy. It didn’t go as planned, but we do feel like we learned some things.

at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Speedway, Indiana on July 27, 2014.

July 30, 2014, Blog, homeslider

Indianapolis Post Race Report

CONCORD, N.C. (July 28, 2014) – In an effort to secure both its NASCAR Sprint Cup teams into The Chase for the Sprint Cup Championship, Richard Petty Motorsports (RPM) left the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and flew directly to the road course in Watkins Glen, New York for a two-day test session for Aric Almirola beginning today.

The goal of the test will be to collect information to help give Almirola the best setup possible before returning in two weeks for the race.  If Ambrose can win the event, it will help secure Almirola into the champiomnship run at the end of the season.

Both teams competed in Sunday’s Brickyard 400 and Almirola had to start from the back of the field after different circumstances on Saturday. Although Almirola team used good pit strategy and had better cars on Sunday, they didn’t gain positions in points.  However, they never lost a position after overcoming the adversity earlier in the weekend.

RPM heads to this test this week with Almirola nearly locked into The Chase.

A recap of the action at Indianapolis follows:

Aric Almirola, No. 43 Eckrich Ford Fusion

Almirola and the No. 43 Eckrich Ford team headed into the 20th annual Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway with high hopes. Testing a new car, the team struggled with a tight condition.  It came to a head in qualifying when Almirola brushed the wall. The team was forced to go to a backup car and started at the rear. They worked on the backup car throughout the race and Almirola finished 21st. He was highlighted by ESPN as a ‘hard charger’ in the race.

Almirola began his trek through the field early as he fought a loose condition early in the race.  Du to an overnight rain, NASCAR Officials called a competition caution on Lap 20.  Crew Chief Trent Owens called for a four-tire pit stop with big adjustments during the caution period. A quick stop gave the No. 43 team the 27th spot on the restart.

The adjustments improved the car and Almirola continued to work his way forward and held the 19th spot before green-flag pit stops began. Owens waited until the end of the fuel window to call the No. 43 down pit road.  On Lap 51, Almirola gave up the third spot and came down pit road. The Eckrich crew changed four tires and made an air pressure adjustment while packing the car full of fuel. When pit stops cycled through, the No. 43 Eckrich Ford was in the 25th spot.

Climbing up to 18th, Almirola said the car was too tight.  Just a few laps after green-flag pit stops started, a stopped car brought out the yellow flag with the No. 43 in the eighth spot.  The No. 43 pit crew made another four-tire stop and adjustments. Almirola restarted 25th on Lap 73. Again, he drove toward the front. When the yellow flag flew on Lap 98, he said the car needed to roll the center better as he raced in the 20th position. Owens chose to change four tires and make more adjustments to the No. 43 Eckrich Ford.

This last adjustment helped the car and Almirola raced into the 16th position. By Lap 125, the No. 43 Eckrich Ford was one of the fastest cars on track. At the end of a fuel run, the team made another green-flag pit stop. This time, the team didn’t make any adjustments and focused on getting the car full of fuel. Unfortunately, this set of tires made the car handle differently and the No. 43 was really loose.  Almirola worked back up to 18th despite the loose condition.

When NASCAR Officials called another caution on Lap 140, Owens elected to have Almirola come down pit road for a two-tire stop.  Almirola restarted 18th and finished 21st with the car being too loose to gain any more positions in the final laps. Almirola is still 10th in the Chase standings.

“That’s a decent finish, but I’m frustrated because we’ve got to figure out how to get more speed,” said Almirola. “We’ve got six more weeks to get our cars better before the Chase, so we’ve got a lot of work ahead of us to try to figure it out and try to be more competitive. But it is what it is. We dug ourselves a hole this weekend and finished 21st. We had one run where we drove up to like 15th, and I thought we were going to be pretty good, and I don’t know if we got a bad set of tires or what, but we could never recover after that.”


July 28, 2014, Blog, homeslider

Operation Inspiration

Eckrich and Richard Petty Motorsports Make Victory Junction Camper Dream Come True
Samuel Sawyer Receives New Custom No. 43 Eckrich Power Wheelchair

LISLE, Ill. – (July 25, 2014) – Born with spina bifida, Samuel Sawyer overcomes adversity each day and inspires all around him, including his father, Mike, who has served in the Navy for over 25 years. Friday, Eckrich and Richard Petty Motorsports honored the family and Samuel with an unexpected gift at the famed Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Samuel, 11, was surprised by “The King” Richard Petty and current driver of the No. 43 Eckrich Ford, Aric Almirola, with a custom-made power wheelchair designed like the No. 43 paint scheme that Almirola will race this weekend. The chair was Petty blue and Eckrich green with the famous No. 43 on the back of the chair, giving Samuel the most unique and fastest power wheelchair available. Even “The King” Richard Petty himself and Almirola autographed the power wheelchair for Samuel. Making Samuel’s day better, the chair is specifically manufactured to allow his dream come true to play power soccer.

Continuing to enrich and honor the Sawyer family, Eckrich announced they will pay the cost needed for Samuel to attend Victory Junction this summer, a children’s camp founded by the Petty family thatprovides life-changing camping experiences that are exciting, fun and empowering, in a safe and medically-sound environment. In addition, Kroger stepped in to surprise the family again by announcing the family will receive free groceries for one entire year at Kroger courtesy of Eckrich. It was all unexpected to the Sawyer family.


July 23, 2014, Blog, homeslider

Indianapolis Motor Speedway Race Advance

No. 43 Eckrich Team Look to Build Momentum in Next Seven Races

Almirola will Make Third Start at Iconic Track


After a week off, Aric Almirola and the No. 43 Eckrich Ford team are recharged and ready for the challenge of Indianapolis Motor Speedway. With just seven races until The Chase for the Sprint Cup, the No. 43 team is working to build momentum in those races to hit the ground running in The Chase.


Almirola has just two starts at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. His best start of fourth was in 2012 and finish of 17th was in 2013.


This weekend marks the third of six race weekends for Eckrich as the primary sponsor on the famed No. 43. The team will return Operation Homefront to the paint scheme on the No. 43 Ford. Eckrich launched ‘Operation Inspiration’ in conjunction with Operation Homefront to honor, thank and support the military families who inspire us. Eckrich and RPM will host a media availability with Almirola and Richard Petty this Friday at 10:00 a.m. in the press conference room to speak more about the campaign and make a special announcement.


#43 @EckrichMeats team recharged and ready to build momentum heading into The #Chase with sold finish at @IMS.  #NASCAR

After a week off, @Aric Almirla andNo. 43 @Eckrich team recharged and ready to build momentum heading into the Chase with a solid finish at @Indianapolis Motor Speedway.


“Indy is so special. I grew up loving to watch motorsports. I always watched the Indy 500. Knowing the history of the place, having the opportunity to drive around Indy is really special. Typically cars that run well at Pocono, especially the tunnel turn, run well at Indy. We’ve got some work to do because we weren’t really happy with our car at Pocono. We’ve got to be better at the flatter tracks. Indy is a very challenging and fast track. It’s one of the races that we all love to go to because of its history, but everything has to be perfect to run well there.


“I’m excited to be partnering with Eckrich with their ‘Operation Inspiration’ program once again. It has been an honor to help them honor and thank military families for the last few seasons. Military families sacrifice so much so their loved ones can help keep us safe. To be able to be a small part of helping those families is a huge privilege and something I look forward to every time Eckrich is on the car.”


July 14, 2014, Blog, homeslider

New Hampshire Race Report

Despite qualifying 19th, Almirola started 41st after a practice accident forced the team to compete with the backup No. 43 Charter Ford. Battling a loose car, he slowly worked his way up through the field. The No. 43 team tried different adjustments to fix the car but it didn’t help the loose condition in the entry of the corners.

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