Finishing third in the ARCA Series final standings at 21-years isn’t that bad of a thing to put on a resume, neither is starting second and winning in your first career start. Brennan Poole is one of the few race car drivers that can say that he has been able to do this. Poole drove for Venturini Motorsports over his 23 career ARCA races and tallied up three wins, 10 top-five’s, 17 top-10’s, four poles and besides that, he was able to lead 473 laps over the course of the 2012 season which was second behind only Alex Bowman.
Poole entered the 2012 season with just four previous starts including two top five’s in his first two starts, a pretty good way to start off his professional racing career.
“No one in my family has ever raced before except me. My dad wasn’t even interested in racing when I was a little kid. I think it was just one of those deals where I was into race cars since I was a little kid and it’s a G-D given talent that he’s given me,” Poole said as he explained how he was the first one in his family to have the desire of being a race car driver.
In 2012, Poole was able to prove to fans, sponsors, his team and most importantly, himself, that he was able to contend for wins on a weekly basis and contend for a championship. Before entering the ARCA Series, Poole raced late models which are a lot lighter than the heavy 3,100 lb stock cars in the premier racing divisions. Overall, the adjustments that he needed to make were severe and he knew that it was time to move up the racing ladder.
“Well, I was able to learn a lot in 2011 and fortunately we were able to win in my first start. We overcame some things, coming from a lap down to win the race and because of that we were just able to learn how the car worked and how to get around guys in traffic. I already picked up a lot of experience in those four races that I ran in 2011 and I won the pole at my first track bigger than a mile which was at Pocono and ended up finishing fifth. The momentum just kind of continued on in 2012. I moved over to the No. 25 after I had won in the No. 55 in Salem with all the No. 25 guys so we built that relationship over three races in 2011 and we kind of just grew together and built that chemistry and once we started getting into the season we ran really well. We had a lot of good runs and unfortunately we had a lot of things that didn’t go our way and I think we did a really good job of overcoming those things. I think we had a great, fun year with the team.”
Well, after all that he went through in his rookie season, the experience has finally paid off. Poole will no longer be racing in the ARCA Series. Beginning in the 2013 season, Poole will be entering NASCAR in either the Camping World Truck Series or the Nationwide Series. He could not announce what team it would be with but remained optimistic that a deal will be completed rather shortly.
“I believe I’ll be moving up. I don’t believe you’ll see me in an ARCA car this year. We’ll see what happens and hopefully we can announce it not too long. I think that either (series) would be awesome. We’ll just have to wait and see what happens,” Poole said as he made it clear he is ready to move onto bigger and better things.
Poole also believes that the experience he gained in 2012 will only help him get better in 2013 when he takes the next step towards being a winner in NASCAR. The man never even made a pit stop before he made his ARCA Series debut, let alone a restart on a larger track. It should be interesting to see where Poole ends up, but it should be known within the next few weeks where he will be racing come Daytona in February.
Joseph Wolkin can be followed on Twitter at @JosephNASCAR.