By Seth Eggert, Staff Writer
Over the years, the ARCA Racing Series has been a place for drivers to make their first starts in restrictor plate racing. Blaine Perkins will become the latest to do so in the General Tire 200 at Talladega Superspeedway for Mason Mitchell Motorsports (MMM). Perkins will drive the No. 98 Auto Parkit / Four Star Fruit Chevrolet SS at the 2.66-mile track.
Perkins participated in open test sessions at both Daytona International Speedway and Talladega to prepare for his first restrictor plate race. The 18-year-old was third fastest in the final Daytona test session on January 13th. Perkins was eighth fastest in the second of the three sessions.
“Participating in the Talladega open test in November provided me with a lot of seat time and helped me get familiar with the bigger restrictor plate tracks,” Perkins said. “I was also able to test at Daytona in January as well. The Daytona test gave me much more drafting practice and should help me come race time. Talladega will be a long race, so having a regular workout regimen should help me physically and mentally. I know my MMM guys will provide me with a great car and it will be left to me to put ourselves in good situations on track, to try to end up in victory lane by the end of the day.”
Perkins made his ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards debut last year for MMM at Kentucky Speedway. He started and finished ninth in an impressive debut for the Bakersfield, CA native.
“Last year Kentucky was an all-around a great race. I learned so much about the aerodynamics of the cars and it will only help me going into Talladega. Also, getting a good finish at Kentucky last year gives me an extreme confidence boost going into my five ARCA races this year.”
Perkins also has 29 NASCAR K&N Pro Series West starts. He has one top-five and 16 top-10 finishes. Perkins’ best finish in the Championship Points standings came in 2016, he finished ninth in points.
Now Perkins will look to turn heads once again as he makes his first Superspeedway start.