The one and only CTech Manufacturing 180 NASCAR Xfinity race at Road America was a huge success! The weather couldn’t have possibly been better, and the racing produced on Elkhart Lake’s legendary 4-mile road course kept us at the edge of our seat right up until the end. We were honored to have more than 250 guests attending the event; from employees, to dealers, customers, and more! It was incredible to see everyone in their blue CTech t-shirts all over the facility on race day.
From the first NASCAR practice session on Friday all the way through the end of the big race, everyone in attendance enjoyed nearly perfect 70-degree weather and plenty of sunshine at the track, breaking free from a particularly hot summer in much of the upper Midwest. The race day itself was a blur of activity, beginning with the ‘CTech Challenge’ go kart race at the CTech Manufacturing Motorplex. The world-class motorplex, which is open for public karting during major events, was reserved for the special race on Saturday and featured 11 pre-selected CTech employees as well as a very special guest driver; Matt Kenseth! Matt draws a crowd everywhere he goes, and the CTech Challenge race was no different. After a great battle during the race itself, our very own Motorsport Product Line Manager Nate Birkenmeier walked away as the victor!
After the CTech Challenge race, NASCAR Xfinity cars hit the track for qualifying. As a bonus, CTech guests also had a CTech-sponsored car to root for! Announced in a last-minute social media post; Kaulig Racing’s #10 Chevy Camaro, driven by AJ Allmendinger, wore a special CTech-laden livery to Road America. Candidly, we thought the #10 was the best-looking car in the paddock! And it was quick too; as A.J. put his CTech Camaro on pole position in Saturday morning’s qualifying session! Starting just behind AJ in the race would be Matt DiBenedetto, who’s been on a very good run lately and was also a favored driver to win. Last years 180-mile race winner Justin Allgaier would start the race in 8th position.
As the pre-race festivities started, Matt Kenseth was officially introduced as the race Grand Marshal and the crowd was treated to a very special U.S. Air Force flyover featuring the 55th Flying Wing’s beautiful RC-135V/W reconnaissance aircraft. Before long, our very own CTech Challenge race winner Nate B. was waving the green flag and the big race was underway! Luckily for the CTech fanbase; AJ’s qualifying speed continued well into the race, picking up a stage 1 victory and staying in contention to win, until he was unfortunately spun after a late-race restart. Meanwhile, Christopher Bell took full advantage of the late restarts and virtually cruised to his first road course victory. He received a congratulatory call from team owner Joe Gibbs while celebrating in pit late, shortly after our very own Mike Greenheck handed over the race trophy that he designed and fabricated in-house at CTech Manufacturing’s headquarters in Weston, Wisconsin. Congrats to Christopher and the Joe Gibbs Racing camp for picking up a hard-fought victory!
Off the racetrack, fans were eager to sign up to win a replica of the extremely unique CTech 180 Trophy Cart, which received plenty of praise and publicity from people in and outside of the NASCAR community. Complete with a beverage fridge inside, the Trophy Cart itself is a specially configured Caster Cart that represents the product quality and finish that every CTech Cart, Cabinet, and Drawer. In the coming days, one lucky fan will be announced as the winner of this unique piece of NASCAR victory lane history! We think the giveaway winner will be just as excited as Christopher Bell’s crew was in the winner’s circle when they found out that the beverage fridge in their new trophy was already fully stocked with Bud Lite!
We have a TON of people to thank for making this weekend possible. The staff at Road America did everything they could to help us get the most out of this incredible opportunity, from the moment we came on as the event title sponsor to the end of the big race and beyond. Our relationship with Road America has been very prosperous through the years, and we appreciate everything they do to help boost our brand. Another special thank you goes out to our Grand Marshal Matt Kenseth, who took time out of his busy schedule to serve as GM; participate in the CTech Challenge race, and mingle with fans all day. Last but not least, we must thank the incredible fans who came to support the race and visit us in either of our displays in the paddock. The 180-mile NASCAR race at Road America is the pinnacle of stock car racing in Wisconsin, and we’re very glad to have the opportunity to support it!