SALT LAKE CITY, UT, September 6, 2022 – Bridget and the BMI Racing team loaded up and headed to Portland International Raceway for round 8 of NASCAR's ARCA Menards West Series for the second time this year and held in conjunction with the Indy car series.
The format for the race weekend was different from the series' previous races, with practice on Friday night, qualifying, and the race on Saturday. The team unloaded the HMH Construction Chevrolet SS and prepared to head out for the practice session. Bridget utilized the session well, getting into a good rhythm around the 1.967-mile road course. The team ended the session early due to mechanical issues with the fueling system
Race day had arrived, and the team went through the typical technical inspection process and prepared the HMH Construction Chevrolet SS for the qualifying session. Unlike the other races, this qualifying session was a timed 20-minute session, and once the driver attempted their fastest lap, they did not have the opportunity to go back on track. Bridget headed out on track, using the first lap to bring everything up to temperature.
On the second lap, Bridget again had mechanical issues with her fuel system with low fuel pressure; she aborted the run and returned to the impound area with the other cars. The team was able to switch out the fuel pump, but due to the impound rules for the race, Bridget would start rear of the field.
The green flag dropped for the Portland 112, and Bridget accelerated across the start-finish line, hungry to move up through the field. The race was going well for the Australian native moving up to 7th place. Unfortunately, again Bridget started experiencing fuel pressure issues on the back section of the track. Knowing there would be a halfway caution allowing the team to re-fuel, Bridget's spotter instructed her to drive at ¾ throttle in that area to avoid leaning out the engine.
The halfway caution came, and the crew got to work quickly, fueling the HMH Construction Chevrolet SS with Sunoco GTX260 race fuel. The green flag dropped once again with Bridget rolling off in 7th position; working hard behind the wheel, hitting her marks, and making clean passes, she had moved up to 4th position, a career-high.
Another caution flag was due to a stopped race car on track with 20 laps to go, and the team used the opportunity to top the fuel up in Bridget's race car to prevent any low fuel pressure issues. As Bridget headed back out on track, a cloud of white smoke appeared as she went through turn 1; the safety crew pushed her back to pit road allowing the team to diagnose the problem, which was the transmission line. The team made the repairs and sent her back on track to finish the race. Bridget's comments after the race, "It was a shame we had so many issues over the weekend; the HMH Construction Chevrolet was competitive, and to start rear of the field and get up to 4th shows that we can compete against the other larger teams."
A replay of Saturday's ARCA Portland 112 will air on USA Network on Friday, September 16, starting at 1:30 p.m. ET.
These great companies power Bridget and BMI Racing:
HMH Construction - Get it Done Right
GEARWRENCH – Forge Ahead
Rugged Radios, Cometic Gasket, Circle Track Warehouse, Ferrea Racing Components, FK Rod Ends, Fragola Performance Systems, GC Cooling Fan, Hawk Performance, Impact Race Products, K&N Filters, Lucas Oil, Miller Electric, ProAm, Rare Parts, Streamline Custom Designs, Sunoco Race Fuel, XS Power
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