By Seth Eggert, Staff Writer
At Chicagoland Speedway, Venturini Motorsports will become the first ARCA Racing Series team to enter three women as teammates. Earlier this season, at Daytona International Speedway, the team made history when it became the first ARCA team to have two women as teammates.
Natalie Decker and Leilani Münter, who were the first two women to be teammates in ARCA earlier this season, will be joined by Toni Breidinger in the Scott 150 at Chicagoland on Thursday night. Decker will drive teams’ flagship No. 25 N29 Capital Partners – Yamaha Toyota Camry, Münter will return to the No. 20 VeganStrong.com Toyota Camry, and Breidinger will be in the No. 55 TORK Toyota Camry.
Decker started the season off with a bang, earning her first career pole position and her best career finish, fifth at Daytona. Since then, she has earned three top-10 finishes. One of those top-10s came at Toledo Speedway while Decker was suffering from a hernia, and another after Brennan Poole relieved the recovering driver at Pocono Raceway.
Münter earned her first two career top-10s this season. The part-time driver has competed in five races this season. Münter was involved in incidents at Talladega Superspeedway and Pocono Raceway while running inside the top-15.
Breidinger earned a top-10 finish in her debut at Madison International Speedway. In her second ‘big car race,’ she finished 12that Gateway Motorsports Park. Breidinger is the winningest female driver in USAC Racing history with 12 wins.
Venturini Motorsports has made history in the past, as team-owner and driver Bill Venturini earn the 1987 ARCA Championship with an all-female pit crew. The team was led by his wife and team co-owner, Cathy Venturini.
“It was a way to get some extra attention and some added sponsorship back then,” Venturini said. “But I never would have come to the racetrack with a pit crew that couldn’t compete. It was far from a publicity stunt. If you look at pictures of our team from back then, those girls were all in tremendous shape. They could compete with anyone on pit road. We won a lot of races with them. And I feel the same way about it now, I wouldn’t come to the track with a driver I didn’t think could compete.”