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Kickin The Tires

Hailie Deegan ‘All I wanted to do was finish’ Brings it home second in ARCA opener

Photo By: Nigel Kinrade Photography / NKP

By Sarah Handy, Staff Writer

Michael Self celebrated in victory lane on Saturday evening at Daytona International Speedway but Hailie Deegan, her second place felt like a victory.

The California native finished second in her first ARCA race at the 2.5-mile superspeedway in Saturday’s Lucas Oil 200, tying the likes of Erin Crocker and Shawna Robinson for the best finish by a female in an ARCA event.

“Second is winning this weekend,” said Deegan post-race. “Pretty much at the end there, all I wanted to do was finish. “My goal for this race was top three to top-five was a victory for me.”

One has to time warp all the way back to 1999 for the last time this took place.

Robinson finished second at Daytona that year, while Crocker finished second on three occasions in her career.

18-year old Deegan will add more superspeedway experience to her racing resume in 2020 when Talladega Superspeedway rolls around in April.

“There is always room for improvement and room for learning. I think at Talladega I am still going to kind of go over everything and try to learn as much as I can from this race. Every single race I have learned something new.”

She will run the full ARCA schedule in the No. 4 Monster Energy Ford Fusion for DGR Crosley.

In addition, she will also compete in select Michelin Pilot Challenge IMSA races in a Ford Mustang GT.

Now that she’s finished second at Daytona, she’s focused on preparing for the next event at Phoenix Raceway.

“I am definitely going to be on the sim a lot and watching footage and going over everything I need to for there. I’ve raced at Phoenix before. We have a new title sponsor for the car there and I would love to have a good run there.”

Deegan’s move to Ford Performance ‘a homecoming’

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