Series Paducah spotlight - Chad Kemenah
Three for Three: Chad Kemenah Looks to Extend Streak of Top-Fives at Paducah International Raceway Paducah , KY -April 15, 2010- There are some tracks that drivers compete at during their entire career and never can quite get the hang of, ...
Three for Three: Chad Kemenah Looks to Extend Streak of Top-Fives at Paducah International Raceway
Paducah , KY -April 15, 2010- There are some tracks that drivers compete at during their entire career and never can quite get the hang of, while there are other places where they instantly get up to speed. For Chad Kemenah, Paducah International Raceway in Kentucky is a track that he was fast at from the first time he set a wheel on the high-banked 3/8-mile in 2007 and has been very strong in each of his three career starts at the facility with the World of Outlaws.
The native of Findlay, Ohio looks to extend his streak of Top-Five finishes at the track this week, as the World of Outlaws make their lone appearance of the season in the BluegrassState on Friday, April 16. Kemenah is a perfect three for three in earning Top-Five finishes at Paducah International Raceway over the last three seasons as he looks for his first win at the track.
"It seems like we have had some pretty good runs down there," said Kemenah. "I don't know why, maybe we've been lucky down there. Hopefully we'll get some things figured out here and get to racing better and be able to do well down there again. I definitely always enjoy going there."
After finishing third in his debut at the track in 2007, Kemenah followed that up with a fifth-place effort in 2008 and was also fifth last season. He lined up 14th last year in the 35-lap main event at Paducah and his car came on late in the race, as he moved into the Top-10 with just 11 laps remaining. In a span of the next five laps, he was able to gain five more spots to work his way into the Top-Five.
Kemenah started 16th in 2008 en route to a fifth-place finish. He worked his way into the Top-10 around the 20th lap in that race and was able to move into the Top-Five over the course of the final 10 laps of that contest. In his debut at Paducah in 2007, the Ohio Native came from 12th to finish third. Kemenah has passed 29 cars in A-feature events in the last three years at the high-banked bullring, which is the most of any driver that has competed in those races. During that span, he has earned the KSE Racing Products Hard Charger Award twice.
"Since the first time I went there, I really liked it," shared Kemenah when asked about Paducah.
"Hopefully you like all of the race tracks the same, but we have had some pretty decent runs there. Hopefully we can go back there and get another one."
Following a couple of breaks in the schedule for the World of Outlaws in the early spring, a stretch of 18 consecutive weekends of racing began in Oklahoma last weekend, which has Kemenah excited as the 2010 schedule begins to shift into high gear. During one of the recent breaks he was able to get a race in at his home track of AtticaRacewayPark in Ohio, finishing fifth in a tune-up for the World of Outlaws stop at the high-banked bullring next month.
"We just need to race more," he stated. "The more than you race, hopefully the smoother things go for you. I have a new crew guy this year, so the more we can race together, hopefully the better that we can get."
Kemenah, who owns his own car this season does most of the work on his No. 63 Golden Flavor Sesame Sticks Maxim himself, including driving the truck and trailer. He has Cale Powers as a crew member in 2010. Powers worked for veteran Danny Smith for each of the last four years, gaining a wealth of knowledge and experience.
"It definitely makes me have to work a lot harder, but that's ok and we'll get through it," said the 2006 Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year Award winner, when asked about having just one crew member. "It does make the strong runs more enjoyable, knowing how hard you work. We're just taking it one day at a time and going from there."
One of the biggest changes in 2010 on the World of Outlaws circuit has been the implementation of double file restarts. Kemenah is still on the fence after 10 races in regards to the double file restarts, though he is quick to point out that if it makes the show better for the fans, then he is all for it.
"I don't know about those yet," he said with a wry smile. "It seems like we are tearing up a lot of race cars. We don't have fenders on these things and we get locked up together. The fans seem to like it, so hopefully we just don't run out of car owners."
Kemenah is currently 15th in the World of Outlaws standings, less than 100 markers out of the Top-10. He picked up a season best finish of seventh in early March at Thunderbowl Raceway in California. He has qualified third and fourth in each of the last two World of Outlaws races and has raced his way into the dash twice this season to earn Top-10 starting spots in A-Feature events. He was running in the Top-Five last weekend in Oklahoma before a flat tire forced him to the work area.
"We just have to get running in the Top-10," he deadpanned when asked what will make it a good spring. "The better you run, the more fun you have and you want to stay out here and do this every day. Hopefully we can get things turned around and just get racing better."
On Friday, April 16 at Paducah International Raceway, adult tickets will be $30, with children ages 12-under admitted free of charge. For more information on tickets call the track at 270-898-7469 or visit www.paducahracing.com.
Series Pevely I-55 Raceway preview
Series Pevely spotlight - Jac Haudenschild