The Kevin Whitaker Chevrolet 150

Greenville-Pickens Speedway
Greenville, SC
Sat. April 2nd
The much anticipated K&N Pro Series East season opener took the green flag in the Kevin Whitaker Chevrolet 150 at Greenville Pickens Speedway after a week’s rain delay yet the outcome was not the anticipated one for Eddie MacDonald and the Grimm Racing Team. The series veteran fought a loose handling racecar for much of the race hanging on for the 14th spot when the checker flag flew.

“The car was so loose at the end, I felt like I was dirt-tracking in the turns. The car was really good early in the race and we were moving forward for the first forty laps but then it just kept getting worse,” said MacDonald after the race.

After running fifth in the first practice, the Rowley driver felt like the car would be good saying, “When we went out for the first practice everything felt great. We had speed and the car was turning well in the corners. We tried some different stuff in the second practice but we went back to our first set up for qualifying. We qualified tenth but it was the fastest lap we had turned there (20.857 sec. 86.302 mph) but we thought we would be good for the long run. It is a long race so we were just going to take it easy at first, take what we could get and save the tires for the end. It was a good plan but it didn’t turn out that way.”

When the green flag waved, the Grimm Racing Chevrolet immediately moved up two spots and by lap 50, MacDonald was riding in the sixth position when the car started losing grip. “ I was racing along with Gresham and Ranstrom for most of the laps but then the car started sliding out from under me in the corners. Those new teams from the south were so fast we started losing a lot of ground. It got so bad I was lucky to hold onto it. We just missed something. We thought we had a pretty good car after what we saw in the first practice and from what we had learned during our test day, so we were confident we would be there at the end of the race.”

Despite the ill-handling racecar, MacDonald rode in the ninth position with ten laps to go but just couldn’t hang on to the spot saying, “I was so loose in the turns the other guys just kept banging off me to get by. The only good thing about the night was the composite body came out of everything in pretty good shape. We really expected a lot more tonight than what we got. We built this car from the ground up and all the guys have worked really hard on it so it was disappointing to have the finish we did. We just have to move on to the next race at South Boston. We had a great test day there so hopefully we will have a much better finish.”

The K&N Pro Series East will travel to South Boston Speedway for the April 16 running of the South Boston 150.
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DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – The 25th season of competition for the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East will commence with the Kevin Whitaker Chevrolet 150 at Greenville (S.C.) Pickens Speedway on Saturday, March 26.

Eddie MacDonald (No. 71 Chevrolet)
• Has six wins, two poles and 56 top 10s in 131 career NKNPS East starts.
• Has an average finish of 11th in four starts at GPS with a best effort of third in 2009.
• The longest-tenured driver on the pre-entry list, this will be his 11th year in the series.

Up to Speed:
• The 2011 season will be the 25th for the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East. The inaugural event was a combination race with the NASCAR Nationwide Series at Darlington Raceway on March 28, 1987. The first stand-alone race was held at Oxford Plains Speedway on April 26.
• There will not be a title defense in 2011 as Ryan Truex – the 2009 and 2010 champion – has moved up to the NNS with Pastrana-Waltrip Racing. Last year’s championship runner-up, Brett Moffitt, has moved from Joe Gibbs Racing to take over for Truex at Michael Waltrip Racing.
• Six of the top 10 finishers in the 2010 season standings will return full-time in 2011. Two of the four not returning, Truex and Cole Whitt, moved up to national series rides.
• New to the 2011 NKNPS East schedule is the inaugural stand-alone race for the series at Richmond International Raceway and the first trips to historical NASCAR weekly tracks Bowman Gray Stadium, Columbus Motor Speedway and Langley Speedway.
• NASCAR lowered the minimum competition age for drivers to 15 across all touring divisions. Chase Elliott will attempt to be the first driver to compete at the age of 15 this weekend at Greenville Pickens Speedway.
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