Abreu 5th in Australian Open

PETERSEN MEDIA: Rico Abreu continued to impress his new Australian fans, as the youngster closed his Australian stint with a 5th place finish at the Australian Open against the World Series Sprint Car Series.

Action got started off on Friday night, and with 37 cars in the pit area, including Donny Schatz, Jason Johnson, Shane Stewart among many others, Abreu set quick time on the night putting him in great position for the weekend.

With three heat races on tap, Abreu went on to pick up heat finishes of fifth, eighth and third all from starting 10th in each of his three heats.

As he entered to feature as the high point earner on the night, Abreu then lined his Abreu Vineyards/Kaeding Performance/Maxim up in the third position.

Once the feature got underway, Rico worked the high, scary side of the speedway as he looked to grab the early lead.

The St. Helena youngster grabbed the point, as he had American stars, Jason Johnson, and Donny Schatz hounding him as he set the pace.

A caution slowed the pace with just six laps to go, and Rico fell back to the second spot. With time running out, Abreu got up over the cushion trying to get the lead back, and ended up falling back to the fifth spot as he chased Jason Johnson, Donny Schatz, James McFadden and Brooke Tatnell across the stripe.

Though he finished in the fifth spot, Abreu still was the top point earner of the night heading into the final night.

To set the first four rows of the 50-lap feature, the format called for a shoot out, putting four cars on the track at a time to match race, with the fastest two advancing to the next round, starting with the bottom four kicking off the event, with the fastest two remaining taking on the top two point earners.

Rico ultimately finished fourth in the shoot out and lined his Stadlehofer Construction/Swift Metal Finishing/Santomauro Racing Products entry in the fourth spot.

The abrasive track was narrow from the start of the night, and was not very passes friendly.

By the 20th lap, the race was completely single file and Abreu found himself in the fifth spot.

As the checkered fell on the 50th lap, Abreu was in the fifth spot behind Donny Schatz, Robbie Farr, James McFadden, and Dave Murcott.

“I had a great time down here, and can’t wait to get back,” said Abreu. “I have to thank Brent Kaeding and Skippy for coming down with me, the Kelly family for housing us, Steve and Pete Thorley for all their help, and Todd Wanless for letting us work out of his shop.”

Abreu would like to thank Abreu Vineyards, Kaeding Performance, Stadlehofer Construction, Factory Kahne Shocks, Sprint Car Innovations, Santomauro Racing Products, ButerBuilt, Swift Metal Finishing, and 7 Industries for their continued support.

ON TAP: Rico will now head to Tulsa, OK to compete in the Chili Bowl out of the Keith Kunz stable. Abreu will qualify on Thursday, January 12th.

STAY CONNECTED: Stay updated with Rico by visiting his website at www.ricoabreuracing.com, ‘liking’ him on facebook at www.facebook.com/ricoabreuracing or following him on twitter @RicoAbreu24.

VIDEO: Be sure to check out http://www.youtube.com/ricoabreuracing for video of Rico, as content is constantly being uploaded!

MERCH: Rico will be selling special edition Chili Bowl shirts at the Chili Bowl featuring his Keith Kunz team of Kyle Larson, Jason Leffler, Bud Kaeding and himself. Stop by the trailer to pick one up.

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