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New Hampshire Motor Speedway
Loudon, NH - 1.058 Mile
Heluva Good! Summer 125
June 26th. 2009
Chris Roy
Photos
Jamie Williams
Photos

MACDONALD SCORES A SIXTH PLACE FINISH AT NHMS
Eddie MacDonald’s late race battle back through the field netted a sixth place finish in the NASCAR Camping World Series East Heluva Good! Summer 125 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. The goal to win the event for the third time in a row after sweeping both races last season at The Magic Mile did not happen but the Grimm Racing Team accomplished one of its goals to move to second in the points race.

MacDonald started on the outside pole then powered by Ryan Truex to the lead in turn two holding on to the top spot for 33 laps. The team earned ten bonus points for leading a lap and shared the lead for the most laps led in the race with 39. The #71 and the #00 pulled away from the pack early leading by as much as 20 cars lengths. No one came close to challenging the pair over the first 62 laps. MacDonald said after the race, “I probably should have let him (#00) go. We were running pretty hard and the car was really good so I could have easily stayed in behind. There was no pressure from behind and I could have saved a little more of the car. It is tough to do that because Ryan and I were having a lot of fun out there.”

The car then began to change with MacDonald saying, “The car got really tight and I had to wait so long to get on the throttle. I put in more rear brake but I had trouble getting in the center and off the turn. It was bouncing especially in turn two and kept washing up the track.”

Despite the tight condition, the decision was made not to take tires on the lap-39 and lap-63 cautions when most of the field pitted for gas and fresh rubber. The team planned to employed the same strategy as last year when they pitted late for tires and the plan worked to perfection as the NEMO-New England Mechanical Overlay sponsored ride was able to blast through the field for the wins. This year, things did not work as planned.

MacDonald was running third when the caution flag flew on lap-77 giving the team an opportunity to bolt on right side tires and fill the Grimm Chevy full of gas. The restart on lap 81 found MacDonald in 19th place and the struggle was on to move back to the front. MacDonald said of the strategy to take tires late in the race, “We waited last year to pit and it worked out but there were some slower cars on the lead lap that made it tough to pass and we fell further behind the leaders. Last year there were more lapped cars so it was easier to get around them. I had to race a couple of guys really hard to get by them.”

On the 100th circuit, MacDonald made the move into ninth place but knew there was not much left saying, “I used up a lot of the car and tires getting back up through. I was just hoping to get a couple of more positions before the end of the race.” When the checkered flag waved MacDonald had picked off two more cars to post a hard-earned sixth place finish.

“We had a good points day and hope we can improve on that at Thompson. We have had success there in the past and really enjoy running there. We were certainly trying to get three in a row here but it just didn’t happen today. Everyone worked so hard on this car so our finish was not for lack of effort. That’s racing and we’ll get them next time.”

Lavender has 901 points, while MacDonald is second with 883 and Truex third with 872. Moffitt dropped to fourth in the points standings.

Eddie led 39 laps.

CHECKERED FLAG -- MATT DIBENEDETTO IS THE WINNER OF THE HEULVA GOOD! SUMMER 125. IT IS HIS SECOND NASCAR CAMPING WORLD SERIES EAST VICTORY. RYAN TRUEX COMES HOME SECOND, FOLLOWED BY KEVIN SWINDELL, JODY LAVENDER AND EDDIE MACDONALD. DIBENEDETTO, 17, GIVES JOE GIBBS RACING ITS THIRD WIN IN THE LAST FIVE RACES AT NEW HAMPSHIRE.

OFFICIAL RUNDOWN: 1. DiBenedetto, 2. Truex, 3. Swindell, 4. Gifford, 5. Lavender, 6. MacDonald, 7. Tardiff, 8. Hernandez, 9. Long, 10. Park, 11. Kobyluck, 12. Armstrong, 13. Olsen, 14. Anton, 15. Kennedy, 16. Johnson, 17. Delaney, 18. Leighton, 19. Salemi, 20. Duff, 21. Smith, 22. J. Johnson, 23. Patison, 24. Shaw, 25. Daniels, 26. Mattioli, 27. Moffitt, 28. Chase, 29. Bouley.

CHECKERED -- Truex blocks DiBenedetto out of Turn 2. DiBenedetto gets into the back of Truex again, pushing Truex ahead as they go into Turn 3. DiBenedetto backs off and then gets a run through inside through Turn 4. The two make contact out of Turn 4 side by side with DiBenedetto pushing into the lead and crosses the line first.  

WHITE FLAG: Truex pulls ahead slightly, but DiBenedetto gets a run 


YouTube Eddie MacDonald New Hampshire
Ride Along Video
HERE


Eddie Qualifies 2nd with a 30.601

Ryan Truex, who was the next-to-last car to go out, knocked Eddie MacDonald (No. 71 NEMO/Grimm Construction Chevrolet) off the provisional pole. MacDonald won both of the New Hampshire races in 2008 and posted a fast lap of 30.601 seconds (124.467 mph) during qualifying. POS CAR DRIVER TEAM TIME SPEED   *Rookie
1 00 Ryan Truex, Mayetta, N.J. * NAPA Toyota 30.443 125.113
2 71 Eddie MacDonald, Rowley, Mass. NEMO/Grimm Construction Chev. 30.601 124.467
3 9 Kevin Swindell, Germantown, Tenn. Curb Records Chevrolet 30.616 124.406
4 44 Brett Moffitt, Grimes, Iowa * Castle Packs Power/EJP Chevrolet 30.69 124.106
5 18 Matt DiBenedetto, Grass Valley, Calif. Joe Gibbs Driven Toyota 30.693 124.093
6 35 Steve Park, East Northport, N.Y. Waste Management Recycle America Chevrolet 30.734 123.928
7 40 Matt Kobyluck, Uncasville, Conn. Mohegan Sun Resort & Casino Chevrolet 30.768 123.791
8 38 Alan Tardiff, Lyman, Maine * Bestway Disposal Chevrolet 30.811 123.618
9 88 Jody Lavender, Hartsville, S.C. JoJo Ent./Custom Race Chassis Chevrolet 30.853 123.45
10 30 Jeff Anton, Russell, Mass. East Coast Resurfacing Chevrolet 30.904 123.246

Heluva Good! Summer 125 News and Notes

The Race … The Heluva Good! Summer 125 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway is the sixth event in an 11-race schedule this year for the NASCAR Camping World Series East, and the first of two trips to Loudon, N.H. This will be the 51st all-time race for the series at NHMS.

The Procedure … The starting field is 36 cars, including provisionals. The first 32 cars will have secured starting positions based on two-lap qualifying. The remaining four spots will be awarded through the provisional process. The race will be 125 laps (132.5 miles).

The Track … NHMS is a 1.058-mile, slightly-banked asphalt oval. The NCWSE, along with the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour, were among the first NASCAR series to compete at NHMS when it opened in 1990. NHMS has played host to more NCWSE races than any other facility in the series’ history.

Race Winners … The inaugural NCWSE race on Sept. 2, 1990 at NHMS was won by Mike McLaughlin. McLaughlin, who also captured the NWMT race that same day, went on to earn three more NCWSE wins at the ‘Magic Mile.’ New Hampshire native Brad Leighton has the most series wins at NHMS with eight. Eddie MacDonald won both races last year.

Pole Winners … Kelly Moore has the most Coors Light Pole Awards in NCWSE history at NHMS with six. Qualifying for the June 2008 race was rained out and Peyton Sellers sat on the pole for the September event. Brian Hoar set the qualifying record in 2002 at 28.892 seconds (127.141 mph).

Competition Counts … Each of the last seven races have featured nine or more lead changes. Each of last year’s races had nine lead changes among six different drivers. The record for most lead changes is 12, achieved twice (Sept. 2005 and Sept. 1996), and the record for more different leaders is eight (Sept. 2006)


New Englanders have lock on Victory Lane

Looking to pick the winner of Friday’s New England 100? Narrow your search for favorites down to those that hail from New England.

The win by Mayetta, N.J., native Martin Truex Jr.’s in the July 2003 race was the last time a driver from outside of New England has gone to Victory Lane in a NASCAR Camping World Series East race.

Of the 21 different winners over the 50 previous events at the ‘Magic Mile,’ all six New England states have been represented. New Hampshire and Maine have had six winners apiece, while Connecticut and Massachusetts have had three each. Rhode Island’s lone winner was Mike Stefanik (1995 and 2005).

Truex and his father are joined by fellow outsiders Steve Park and Mike McLaughlin (both from New York) as the only non-New Englanders to break through.

Other notes to keep in mind when looking for a favorite:

Just four rookies have won at New Hampshire — McLaughlin (1990), Park (1996), Brad Leighton (1996) and Joey Logano (2007).

Only nine times has the pole winner gone on to win the race. Truex Jr. and Leighton did it twice and it was most recently accomplished by Logano in June 2007.

Joe Bessey’s win from the 24th-starting position in 1994 is the furthest back an eventual winner has begin. Only four times as the winner qualified outside of the top 10.


Last year’s event ...

Eddie MacDonald achieved what he called his biggest win of the season when he emerged from a three-wide scramble with Matt Kobyluck and rookie Trevor Bayne to pull off his first win at New Hampshire. MacDonald used the inside lane to squeeze by Bayne just as Bayne was trying to take the lead from Kobyluck on the inside.

MacDonald led the Heluva Good! 125 three times for 35 laps, taking the lead for the final time on a green-white-checkered finish that stretched the race to 127 laps. Bayne finished second, followed by Kobyluck and rookies Austin Dillon and Ricky Carmichael.

Marc Davis, Mike Olsen, John Salemi, Brad Leighton and Brian Ickler rounded out the top 10.

Veterans Look To Defend Their Home Turf - Story on NASCAR Local


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