By Brian Eberly, Contributing Writer
The Petty bloodline is making a return to the ARCA Racing Series as Thad Moffitt, the grandson of Richard Petty, will make his series’ debut on Saturday night at Fairgrounds Speedway Nashville. In a partnership with Richard Petty Motorsports, Empire Racing Group has entered Moffitt in the No. 46 Petty Blue Ford with primary sponsorship from Transportation Impact.
Empire Racing Group will be serving as the developmental team for Richard Petty Motorsports in 2016, providing young drivers with driver coaching, technical support, public relations and marketing needs.
Sixteen-year-old Thad is the son of Brian and Rebecca Moffitt. Rebecca is Richard’s daughter and Brian is the CEO of Richard Petty Motorsports. Thad won the 2016 Southeast Limited Late Model Championship and has raced with Empire in a NASCAR late model this season.
“I love racing, being at the track and just learning and trying to get better each race,” said Thad. “The ERG team has been great and I’ve had a lot of fun with them in the late model. They have a good ARCA program and I really wanted to make my debut in this series.
“A lot of great drivers have raced in ARCA, and Uncle Kyle (Petty) and (cousin) Adam (Petty) have both won in this series. It makes me really want to follow in their footsteps.”
Moffitt had the chance to test the ARCA car at Nashville last month and will have crew chief Mike Cheek calling the shots from atop the pit box.
“Thad did well during the ARCA test, and no matter the result, this will be great experience at a young age. He has a lot of passion to follow in the footsteps of his family. He has won a championship in a limited late model and in just a few races in a NASCAR late model, he has shown his talents,” Cheek said.”
What does Moffitt expect for his debut in Saturday night’s ARCA Music City 200?
“I’m excited and ready, but I have a lot to learn. I just want to stay out of trouble and have a good race for everyone who supports me. We can’t do it without them.”