BROOKLYN, Mich: Looking to bounce back from an electrical gremlin in the most recent ARCA Menards Series race at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway, rookie driver Frankie Muniz and his Rette Jones Racing team invade Michigan International Speedway set for a rebound in Friday afternoon’s Henry Ford Health 200.
While Pocono’s “Tricky Triangle” proved to be a tricky race for the Mooresville, N.C.-based team, the Mark Rette-led team has reset and heads to the Irish Hills of Michigan looking to deliver Muniz his eighth top-10 finish of the season.
“I’m ready to get back after it,” said Muniz. “Pocono was tough. I really was getting comfortable with the track when we ran into our issue.
“I’m thankful for the hard work of my Rette Jones Racing team as they were able to quickly diagnose and repair the issue, I’m just bummed that it eliminated us from contending for a strong run.”
Muniz realizes that there will be forks in the road during his inaugural ARCA Menards Series season, but he said minimizing the issues like his team did in the Pocono Mountains is super important.
“We were able to pick up five or six spots after returning to the race and those points are super important,” added Muniz. “Yes, I hate that we dropped to third in the championship standings, but the points are so tight – especially between second and fourth, but there is time to recover and I have the utmost faith in my Rette Jones Racing team.”
With the halfway point of the season set to begin just outside the Motor City, Muniz is proud of what he has been able to accomplish during the first 10 races of the season.
“I think the first half of our season has gone better than expected,” offered Muniz. “Outside of Elko and Pocono, I think we have been extremely competitive and I have learned so much being behind the wheel of the No. 30 Rette Jones Racing Ford Mustang.
“The second half of the season is going to present some more challenges, but also more opportunities and I’m diving in completely focused and ready to keep our name in the championship hunt and hopefully contending for a win or two before the season ends in October at Toledo Speedway.”
For the second time this season, Muniz and Rette Jones Racing will display the Ford colors for the 11th ARCA Menards Series race of the season.
“I would be lying if I didn’t say there wasn’t a little bit of pressure to perform in Ford’s backyard,” admitted Muniz. “Ford has been an instrumental player to my rookie ARCA Menards Series season and I continue to be appreciative of everything they do for our team.
“I am honored to carry their logo on our car at their hometown race track at Michigan International Speedway on Friday afternoon.”
Former ARCA championship-winning crew chief and co-owner Mark Rette has been extremely impressed with Muniz’s performances in the first 10 races of the year and looks forward to seeing him strengthen his craft in his Michigan International Speedway debut on Friday night.
“It’s another big track for Frankie and I think he is going to adapt well,” offered Rette. “We were all pretty bummed about what happened in Pocono, but collectively we know what caused the issue and we feel like we have taken preventive measures to ensure that it does not happen again.
“As for Michigan, it’s a fast track with a lot of room to race and although it will probably take Frankie a couple of laps to find his comfort zone, I think he will acclimate quickly and contend for a strong finish for our Rette Jones Racing team and Ford on Friday afternoon.”
Entering Michigan, Muniz sits third in the ARCA Menards Series championship standings, 74 markers behind championship leader Jesse Love with 10 races remaining.
Rette Jones Racing stands a respectable fifth in the ARCA Menards Series championship owner standings.
Since 2023, Muniz has 10 ARCA Menards Series starts to his credit with a career-best finish of sixth at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in July 2023, Berlin (Mich.) Raceway in June 2023, Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway in May 2023 and Phoenix Raceway in March 2023 and seven top-10s overall. He also maintains an average finishing position of 8.6 in his inaugural year of stock car competition.
The Henry Ford Health 200 (100 laps | 200 miles) is the 11th of 20 races on the 2023 ARCA Menards Series schedule in the 71st consecutive ARCA season. Practice begins Friday, August 4 from 1:30 p.m. – 2:15 p.m. General Tire pole qualifying in a timed session will start a short time later at 2:30 p.m. The race is set to take the green flag later in the day shortly after 6:00 p.m. ET. The event will be televised live on FOX Sports 1 (FS1) with the Motor Racing Network (MRN) and SiriusXM Satellite Radio (XM channel 391 | online channel 981) handling the radio waves. ARCARacing.com will also stream live timing and scoring throughout the entire weekend festivities.