CARQUEST Fall Final 150

2008 CW East Race 13

Stafford Motor Speedway
Stafford Springs, CT - .500 mile
Sunday, October 12th

Eddie MacDonald escaped the mayhem at the conclusion of the CARQUEST Fall Final 150 at the Stafford Motor Speedway to post a satisfying fifth place finish in the final Camping World Series East race of the season. After struggling in practice and qualifying 23rd on Saturday, the run was especially satisfying for the team.

“It was exactly what we needed. We were hoping for a little better but considering yesterday’s qualifying run that was so bad, this was a good finish. Rollie and the guys changed just about everything in the car last night and this morning. The only thing that stayed the same in the car was me. We didn’t know what to expect when the race started but they did a awesome job,” said MacDonald after the race.

When the green flag waved, the Grimm Construction/NEMO sponsored Chevy began moving to the front. By lap 30, MacDonald was in the 19th spot on the grid and into the 10th position on the lap 46 restart. At the halfway mark MacDonald was in eighth place then a number of caution flags near the end gave MacDonald the opportunity to gain three more positions.

“It was just a little tight in the center and just a little loose off the corners but we were able to avoid all the wrecks and sneak our way up there,” said the Rowley, Mass. driver. “It did get a little crazy out there but it is always like that on these short tracks. It gets real tight on the restarts at the end and it was great we weren’t involved in anything.”

Crew chief Rollie LaChance said after the race, “I’m very pleased. The car just moved forward all day long and Eddie did a good job maintaining. We didn’t try to set the world on fire. We picked them off sometimes one at a time; sometimes we got a bunch on a couple of restarts. They worked out well for us. I am real thrilled with the run because we changed four springs; two shocks, front and rear sway bars after qualifying so bad. It was a lot of changes to throw at a car but it worked out for us.”

With the two huge wins at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, six top five finishes, and scoring seventh in the points race, the driver, crew chief, and owner all expressed satisfaction with the season.

MacDonald said, “ It was fairly decent. We had a lot of ups and downs. We had a lot of top five runs that were great. We had fuel pump and engine issues that cost some decent finishes and hurt us in the points but I am very happy to finish seventh considering the problems we had. This season is something to build on for next year. We are planning on running the same thing next year and hopefully we will find some more sponsorship over the winter. I want to thank my sponsors and crew. They did a great job throughout the whole year. We are so lucky to have Ron and Becky Bennett from NEMO and it is nice to have Rob Grimm as the team owner because he really understands the whole thing. When things get bad, he doesn’t get down. He just wants to find a way to fix it. We have a super group of guys, especially with Rollie as the leader. Hopefully we can come back a little stronger next year.”

LaChance was quick to add, “I think it was a very successful season. It was successful with the first Loudon win and everything after that was a bonus. The second Loudon win was nice because it backed up the first win. It was not just a lucky win. We led the most laps and we had the best car.”

The veteran crew chief is already gearing up for next year saying, “We are going to go after it again next year. It will be similar to this year. There s no big sponsor in place but it is being worked on. We’ll spend the fall trying to organize the structure here and making the tools we have a lot more useful to us. Then we’ll take some time getting the road course and the back-up car done. We are taking the Loudon car to Irwindale.”

Team owner Rob Grimm reflected on the day and the season saying, “ I was not at all surprised we finished fifth after our qualifying effort. I’ve learned that if anyone can get it done, it is these guys. It is nice to end the season on a high note and look forward to next season. I am happy to be in the top ten in points in only our first full year. It is a strong showing. I am looking forward to improving next year. We really learned a lot and we have the guys in place to make it happen.”

NEMO sponsor Becky Bennett shared her enthusiasm after the race saying, “This is absolutely fabulous. It was very exciting. Eddie is a great entertainer and I knew he would do the best he could. This season has been unbelievable and the Loudon wins were the frosting on the cake.”

The team will now focus on improving on last year’s fifth place finish in the Toyota All Star Showdown in Irwindale, California in January.

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