While summer means a vacation for most, 18-year old Kelly Admiraal, driver of the #83 Western Camp Services Chevrolet, will be put to the test over the next couple of weeks finishing his high school career and racing at the next level of the sport.
This weekend, Admiraal enters the Carneros 200 on Saturday, June 22 in his first career roadcourse start in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series at Sonoma (CA) Raceway.
The 1.99-mile road course at Sonoma set in the picturesque wine country of Northern California has always been a favorite of fans and competitors drawing both from across the country.
"I'm extremely excited for this weekend," Admiraal stated. "This race will be a great experience for me as a driver and really test my skills as I don't have any road course experience."
Admiraal will have to adapt quickly to the 1.99-mile challenging circuit in two practice sessions on Friday totaling two hours and 40 minutes. With limited practice time he will have to draw upon previous tests sessions over the last month.
"Testing has been excellent," Admiraal offered. "I have learned a lot about how to road race, and got to know the track really well racing GT type cars. "I have learned quickly that there is a tremendous amount of technical skill that is required in road racing. I feel really good about our team and I am so looking forward to racing at Sonoma."
Leading the team effort at Sonoma will be NASCAR veteran crew chief Craig Raudman. "Craig has been and incredible asset to the team and has help my learning curve with these cars," Amiraal said."He is a proven winner both behind the wheel and as a crew chief."
Raudman, a NASCAR championship winning driver and crew chief has been impressed with the team that has moved their operation to his shop in Northern California. "Kelly has a lot of natural talent and just needs seat time, Raudman offered. "We really have three races this weekend. First is to get him comfortable in practice. Next he needs a solid qualifying result. Then he just needs to complete every lap in the race. I know he can do all three."
Admiraal will have a full plate this weekend as he is completing his final exams for high school and will fly into Sonoma late in order to race then fly back to Edmonton to complete exams and then fly to Seattle next week for the Summer Showdown at Evergreen Speedway.
"Balancing racing with my finals in school has definitely been a challenge," Admiraal stated. "I've put a lot of effort into making sure I'm ready in both aspects and am quite confident with how I'll do."
The team will compete in a variety of racing series this season including the NASCAR K&N Pro Series, NASCAR Canadian Tire Series, the Dakota Dunes Series, and selected Late Model special events.
The team's next NASCAR K&N Pro Series start will be on the 5/8-mile Evergreen Speedway known as the Superspeedway of the West with Kelly Admiraal behind the wheel. The team's complete schedule is located at www.admiraalracing.com.
Official Press Release