After two practice sessions for the inaugural Better Half Dash at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Jacquelyn Butler, the girlfriend of NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver David Ragan, topped the charts at the conclusion the second session, held Wednesday.
"It feels good to be the quickest right now, because I'm a very competitive person," said Butler. "David always drags me with him to Summer Shootout and I think it definitely helps having watched a lot of Legend and Bandolero racing."
Butler has been preparing for this event with the help of Ragan and even has some previous racing experience.
"I practiced on an iRacing simulator with Legend Cars around the same track we'll race on, I've asked Chris Dilbeck and David a lot of questions and I've raced karts in the past. I think every little bit probably helps."
Butler completed her fastest lap in 20.63sec on the frontstretch quarter-mile oval. Sabrina Simpson, girlfriend of NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Joey Logano, was second in practice, just four one-hundredths of a second off of Butler's time.
"After Monday's session I thought there were a few girls with experience who would have a big advantage, but after watching everyone last night, a lot of these girls were really good, and that surprised me a little," said Butler.
Shannon Koch, wife of NASCAR driver Blake Koch; Trisha Mears, wife of NASCAR driver Casey Mears; and Patricia Driscoll, girlfriend of NASCAR driver Kurt Busch, did not participate in Wednesday's practice session. Also out of the running was Matt Kenseth's wife Katie, who withdrew from the event after suffering a broken shoulder blade in an accident during practice earlier in the week
The Better Half Dash, which will take place on Oct. 15, prior to the start of the Bank of America 500, is a charity race supporting Speedway Children's Charities (SCC) and Motor Racing Outreach (MRO). The race will pit the women of NASCAR against each other in equally prepared Bandolero cars provided by U.S. Legend Cars International.
The race will start at approximately 2:30 p.m. and will be 25 laps in length, with a competition caution set for lap 15. There will be two chances at a green-white-checkered finish. Starting order will be determined by random draw prior to the race.
The purse for the Better Half Dash will be paid to the driver's charity of choice, with $5,000 going to the winner's charity, $3,000 for the second-place finisher and $2,000 for third. Fans will also have the opportunity to donate $10 to MRO and SCC through the completion of the Bank of America 500 by texting "MOTOR" to 20222.
The race will air on SPEED's NASCAR Race Day at 4:30 p.m. EDT on Oct. 15, prior to the Bank of America 500.
1. Jacquelyn Butler - 20.63 sec.
(Girlfriend of David Ragan)
2. Sabrina Simpson - 20.67 sec.
(Girlfriend of Joey Logano)
3. Beth Baldwin - 20.77 sec
(Wife of NASCAR team owner Tommy Baldwin)
4. Kristen Yeley - 20.87 sec.
(Wife of NASCAR J.J. Yeley)
5. Wendy Venturini - 20.89 sec.
(SPEED television personality)
6. Michelle Gilliland - 21.07 sec.
(Wife of David Gilliland)
7. Jamie McDowell - 21.20 sec.
(Wife of Michael McDowell)
8. Ashley Allgaier - 21.26 sec.
(Wife of Justin Allgaier)
9. Angie Skinner - 21.57 sec.
(Wife of Mike Skinner)
10. Melanie Self - 21.83 sec.
(Women and Children's Ministry Coordinator, Motor Racing Outreach)
11. Nan Zipadelli - 21.96 sec.
(Wife of NASCAR Crew Chief Greg Zipadelli)