|Holland International Speedway - 6/24/06 - 5th|
Eddie Powers to Fifth Place Finish
at Holland International Speedway
Eddie MacDonald breathed a sigh of relief with his fifth place finish in the NASCAR Grand National Division Busch East Series’ Fuccillo Auto Park HUGE 150 at Holland International Speedway. After two disappointing weeks, the Rowley Massachusetts driver feels the team is back to where it should be running.
“I am just so pleased for everyone on this team that we were finally able to finish in the top five. We felt all along that we are capable of running in the top five each week. The first two weeks were lousy so we needed this run to get us back on track. We’ll take this one and hopefully repeat our performance from last season at Thompson on Thursday and get another win. It has been a difficult beginning to the season so a finish like this is great for everyone.”
MacDonald powered the New England Mechanical Overlay Chevy to a third place qualifying run with a speed of 91.619 mph around the high-banked three-eighths of a mile oval. Despite the run MacDonald was not completely satisfied with the car saying, “The car was okay but it wasn’t great. I thought we could have done a little better but I know Rollie (LaChance) will tweak it a little more and we’ll have something for the race.
When the green flag waved, MacDonald was able to get a big jump on outside pole sitter Charles Lewandoski and take off with Sean Caisse to establish a sizeable lead on the field for the first third of the race. The car was handling well according to MacDonald. “The car was super and I was just cruising along behind Caisse. I didn’t want to use up the tires and there wasn’t any pressure from behind so I wanted to position myself for a shot to win it at the end.”
When the race began to tighten up, the #48 began fighting a loose condition that would not allow him to run the bottom of the track. “We couldn’t hold the bottom and the fast way around the track was on the outside. When I ran up there the car was really fast but unfortunately I got stuck on the bottom on a restart and lost a lot of positions.”
The MacDonald Motorsports Monte Carlo slipped all the way back to the eighth position before making another charge to the front. With fewer than twenty laps remaining, MacDonald set sail on the high groove to fight his way into the fifth spot.
“It was a lot of fun at the end and racing that track was fun also but I knew if I had any chance at all of getting into the top three I had to stay on the outside. I really feel that if I had some more laps, we would have had a better finish. But after the first two weeks it really feels good to have this run and bring the car home in pretty good shape. I know my body and paint man John Tiernan is breathing easier.”
“The team is really looking forward to going back to Thompson this week. It is a short turn-around time but we’ll be ready. Finishing the season there last year with a win really gave us a big boost for this season. After all the changes that we have made, we still feel that Thompson will be big for us. We know we have the handling and the horsepower that you need there to run well.”
Eddie 5th for Best Run of 2006 at Holland
HOLLAND, N.Y. - Bryon Chew scored his first NASCAR Grand National Division, Busch East Series victory after six years of trying Saturday night at Holland International Speedway, leading only three laps of the Fuccillo Auto Park HUGE 150. Dueling side-by-side with leader Mike Johnson on a restart at lap 145, the Long Island driver finally claimed the lead for good on the white flag lap, winning by 0.221 seconds. Mike Olsen edged Tracy Gordon for third and closed to within 22 points of leader Sean Caisse, who placed eighth.
Caisse won his second consecutive Busch Pole award and led the first 63 laps, seeking a historic third straight win to open the season. Then Olsen, looking for his first wins since 2003, caught Caisse and the pair swapped the lead five times during the middle stages. With less than 40 laps to run Johnson, locked out of victory lane since 2004, surged to the front, only to be overcome by Chew on the decisive restart. Gordon, the last Busch East Series driver to win three in a row back in 2000, was a swift mover in the closing laps but ran out of time to mount a challenge for his first win since 2002. MacDonald's fifth pace run was his best with the new team he formed on the eve of the season opener.
Gordon won the POWERade Power Move of the Race Award for advancing 11 positions from start to finish, while Johnson captured the Featherlite Most Improved Driver award for turning around a miserable finish at Stafford Motor Speedway one week ago. For the first time, John Freeman was the leading Sunoco Rookie contender.
Four drivers - Caisse, Olsen, Johnson, and Chew- traded the lead nine times as nine caution periods slowed the action for 47 laps. Of the 26 starters, 23 were running at the finish with 15 on the lead lap. There were no significant incidents as all three retirements were due to mechanical issues.
The Busch East Series resumes action Thursday night, June 29, at Thompson (Conn.) International Speedway in a doubleheader with the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour.
Top 10 Driver
UNOFFICIAL BUSCH EAST SERIES POINT STANDINGS (wins)
1. Sean Caisse (2) 527
2. Mike Olsen 505
3. Matt kobyluck 483
4. Bryon Chew (1) 474
5. Charles Lewandoski 434
6. Mike Johnson 428
7. Kip Stockwell 398
8. Jeff Anton 390
9. Eddie MacDonald 385
10. Joey McCarthy 380
NASCAR GRAND NATIONAL DIVISION, BUSCH EAST
Fuccillo Auto Park HUGE 150
Holland International Speedway, Holland, N.Y., Saturday, June 24, 2006
UNOFFICIAL FINISH - driver's starting position in parentheses, hometown,
make and model of car, laps completed, reason out (if any) and prize money.
1. (7) Bryon Chew, Mattituck N.Y., Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 150, $7,733
2. (8) Mike Johnson, Salisbury Mass., Ford Taurus, 150, $3,733
3. (6) Mike Olsen, North Haverhill N.H., Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 150, $3,133
4. (15) Tracy Gordon, Strong Me., Ford Taurus, 150, $2,800
5. (3) Eddie MacDonald, Rowley Mass., Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 150, $2,433
6. (10) Joey McCarthy, Randolph N.J., Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 150, $2,083
7. (2) Charles Lewandoski, Stafford Springs Conn , Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 150, $1,983
8. (1) Sean Caisse, Pelham N.H., Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 150, $2,883
9. (4) Matt Kobyluck, Uncasville Conn., Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 150, $1,783
10. (14) Kip Stockwell, Braintree VT., Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 150, $1,783
11. (9) Rogelio Lopez, Mexico, Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 150, $1,733
12. (19) Alex Hoag, Bath N.Y., Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 150, $975
13. (11) John Freeman, Huntersville N.C., Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 150, $950
14. (23) Scott Bouley, Thomaston Conn., Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 150, $1,658
15. (12) Carlos Pardo, Mexico, Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 150, $900
16. (24) Patrick Dupree, Onchiota N.Y., Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 149, $825
17. (16) Ruben Pardo, Mexico City Mexico, Dodge Intrepid, 149, $800
18. (5) Brian Hoar, Williston Vt., Dodge Intrepid, 148, $1,508
19. (17) Jeff Anton, Russell Mass., Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 143, $1,458
20. (25) Pierre Bourque, Ottawa Ont., Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 141, $700
21. (13) Joe Masessa, Franklin Lakes N.J., Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 137, $1,433
22. (22) Jeremy Clark, Cortland n.Y., Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 118, $700
23. (26) Brent Cross, Cortland N.Y., Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 117,$700
24. (20) Dion Ciccarelli, Severn Md., Ford Taurus, 118, Engine, $700
25. (18) John Salemi, Nashua N.H., Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 49, Suspension, $1,433
26. (21) Rich Gould, North Brunswick N.J., Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 45, Engine, $700
TIME OF RACE: 57 minutes, 50 seconds
AVERAGE SPEED: 57.579 mph
MARGIN OF VICTORY: 0.221 seconds
CAUTION PERIODS: 9 for 47 laps
LEAD CHANGES: 9 among 4 drivers
LAP LEADERS: Sean Caisse 1-63, Mike Olsen 64-74, Caisse 75-84, Olsen 85-95,
Caisse 96-98, Olsen 99-116, Mike Johnson 117-146, Bryon Chew 147, Johnson
148, Chew 149-160
BUSCH POLE AWARD: Sean Caisse, Casella Waste Systems Chevrolet (14.494
seconds @ 93.142 mph)
POWERADE POWER MOVE OF THE RACE AWARD: Tracy Gordon, Archer Corp./The
FEATHERLITE MOST IMPROVED DRIVER AWARD: Mike Johnson, Johnson Lumber Ford
Media Contact: Jennifer MacDonald - firstname.lastname@example.org