TOLEDO, Ohio – official release – ARCA photo — There’s nothing quite like a good dose of confidence in motorsports, and a win will do it every time. It certainly did for Justin Allison, who, in only his eighth ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards start, went to Victory Lane at Pocono Raceway in early August.
“I’m definitely feeling more confident,” Allison said. “I mean, to finally win not only boosts moral for everyone around you, it gives me confidence going to the next one.”
The next one for the third generation Allison will be at Kansas Speedway October 3 where he made his ARCA Racing Series debut last year, finishing 11th.
“I definitely feel good about going back to Kansas. I definitely like that place…the track…the facility; it’s as good as it gets. I wouldn’t say I’ve got it covered just because I’ve seen it once, but I’m feeling confident that we should be good there.”
That said, at least Allison has seen the place before. More often than not, all the tracks that Allison’s racing on this year are new experiences for the Salisbury, N.C. driver.
“It’s a big learning curve…running these big heavy ARCA cars on the big tracks, all tracks I’ve never raced on. Pocono was the first track I got to go back to after racing on it once, and look what happened. Maybe since we’re going back to Kansas we can make that happen again.”
Winning was something the Allison family was used to, but it hasn’t happened since Davey Allison won at Richmond in 1993. Allison said he understands the importance of his family in racing, but doesn’t feel added pressure.
“I definitely am aware of it, but I try to block it out,” he said. “I’m not my grandpa (Donnie) or my uncle Bobby. It’s just something I’ve had to learn about over the years. There’s always pressure there regardless of your last name. I’m not really sure what the expectations are for me; I guess it depends on who’s doing the evaluating.”
Kansas will mark Allison’s 10th ARCA start in 2014, exactly half of the series schedule.
“I definitely wish I was running the full series…it’d be a great learning experience…running the dirt…all the places ARCA goes. Even on our part-time schedule, I feel like I’ve learned a lot this year…something we can take to the next race.”
Allison has entered his own No. 08 HAVACO Sales Ford for Kansas, a switch from his 10 previous ARCA starts, all of which came in Howard Bixman’s Team BCR Ford.
The legacy of the Allison name is well documented in the annals of stock car racing.
It started with brothers’ Bobby and Donnie Allison – part of the infamous Alabama Gang – who barnstormed across the south racing stock cars, eventually landing in NASCAR where they became household names.
Eventually, the torch got handed down to the second generation of Allison’s. Brothers’ Davey and Clifford were well on their way up the NASCAR charts before their lives were cut short in tragic accidents.
The Allison family has an enduring history with the ARCA Racing Series reaching back to 1975 when Bobby Allison won the ARCA race at Salem Speedway.
Bobby, a three-time winner of the Daytona 500, also brought both his sons, Davey and Clifford, through the ARCA Racing Series ranks as part of their driver development en route to NASCAR.
Davey, the 1984 ARCA Rookie of the Year, made 40 career ARCA Racing Series starts from 1980 through 1986, finishing second in championship standings in 1984 and third in 1985. He also won eight races over his ARCA career, including four wins at Talladega Superspeedway, two at Atlanta Motor Speedway, one at Middle Georgia Speedway and one at Lucas Oil Raceway. His ARCA career includes 21 top-five finishes and 25 top-10s overall, and five pole awards – three at Talladega, one at Atlanta and one at Lorain County Speedway. Davey, like his father before him, won the Daytona 500 in 1992.
Davey’s younger brother Clifford made 12 ARCA Racing Series starts from 1988 through 1992 finishing a career-best second two times at Michigan Int’l Speedway and Pocono in 1992.