By Christian Koelle, Staff Writer
Austin Hill hasn’t raced in the ARCA Menards Series since 2018.
A total of 1,072 days since Hill last raced in ARCA with MDM Motorsports at Charlotte in 2018. He finished a solid 10th place finish in that race but Friday’s start will be his first on a road course in ARCA since Watkins Glen in the ARCA Menards Series East. After finishing 33rd and 10th on the Daytona Road Course and Circuit of the Americas, Hill will use his start Friday to gain some track time on road courses before the Trucks Series returns to Watkins Glen in August, the final race of the regular season.
“Any time you can get laps on a road course, it’s really helpful,” said Hill. “Even though we’ve been doing more road course racing over the last couple of years, you always want to keep improving yourself as a driver. It’s cool to be able to race at Mid-Ohio this week with ARCO National Construction on board. It’s a place I’ve never been to but has a short-track road course look to it. There are a couple of long straightaways, but the track has quite a few slower, tight sections. Any laps we get on a road course help our effort on the truck side, so hopefully, we’ll be able to have a smooth day on Friday and bring home a trophy.”
Despite not having a victory in the ARCA Menards Series, Hill has five career victories in the ARCA Menards Series East. His most recent victory came at Richmond Raceway in 2015 with his own organization. His success in ARCA led to opportunities in the Truck Series and ultimately led to his chance with Hattori Racing Enterprises.
Speaking of NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, Hill currently sits third in NCWTS points standings. He is the highest non-winner in the playoff standings. Without qualifying and practice at Watkins Glen, Friday’s race will be ample track time and some extra track time, and an extra page in the road course book.
Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography