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Saturday, July 6th

Epping, NH
Podium Finish for MacDonald
at Star Speedway’s ACT Race
“We were so bad in practice earlier today, I thought about loading up and going home,” laughed Eddie MacDonald in the pits after posting a second place finish in the American Canadian Tour’s Firecracker 150 at Star Speedway Saturday night. The Freddie Peterson owned Hancock Electric Chevy rallied from a 14th starting position in the 19 car field to stage a dramatic run to the front in typical Eddie Mac fashion on the quarter-mile bullring for 150 laps.

“This is a great finish for us,” said MacDonald. “In the first practice, the car just wouldn’t turn and it wouldn’t go at all. Rollie and the crew worked on it and it was a little better in the second practice but it was far from good. Even after a lousy heat race, the guys went to work and would not give up. We started -3 in the consi race and the car actually felt better. We made a couple of more adjustments and found something loose that the crew fixed and hoped it was enough for the race and it was.”

The familiar #17 with the National Multiple Sclerosis Society emblems prominently displayed on the car for the team’s K&N Pro Series East team owner’s Rob Grimm’s daughter Megan Spaulding began making its way through the field after taking the green flag. It was the return of the ACT Series to the Epping oval after a ten year absence. With a lot of side by side racing, it was difficult to pass but Eddie Mac restarted in the eighth position after a lap 52 caution telling crew chief Rollie LaChance on the radio, “It feels pretty good and it rotates better in the second groove and cuts pretty good in the center of the turns. It is a little loose but I see a lot of guys out here a lot more loose than we are.”

By the lap 60 caution, Eddie Mac ran in the fifth spot comfortably while saving tires for the end of the race. MacDonald moved into the fourth position on lap 81 and was closing on the #34’s bumper driven by Todd Davis as the top four cars pulled away from the field. While leader Wayne Helliwell fought off the hard challenge of eventual winner Joey Polewarczyk, Eddie Mac and Davis staged and epic duel with the Hancock Electric sponsored ride eventually taking the third spot on lap 101. But Davis was not done and continued to race hard to regain the position.

For 25 laps Helliwell and Joey Pole raced door to door for the lead with Eddie Mac and Davis doing the same for the third spot. With 15 laps remaining the final caution flag flew with Eddie Mac saying, “The car is pretty worn out right now. I think they are going to start the #34 ahead of us in third so we will have to start on the outside. We should be okay there.”

When the field returned to racing Eddie Mac’s prediction proved correct. Pole took the lead from his outside starting position with MacDonald following right behind to make the pass on Helliwell for second on lap 139 saying, “There was actually some grip in the second groove and I was able to make the pass but I had nothing left to catch the #97. As loose as we were, I thought we had a better chance on the outside and it worked out great for us.”

“We really needed this as a team,” said the Rowley, Mass. veteran. “We have been struggling with this car this year and we found something tonight. The crew worked their tails off and never gave up. I am happy for them and Freddie Peterson who has stuck with us. You always want to win but we will happily take this second place finish. We don’t run a full ACT Series schedule because of our commitment to the K&N Pro Series East, so to come here and run as well as we did is awesome.”
The Grimm Racing Team will take the green flag in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East race at Columbus (Ohio) Motor Speedway this Saturday July 13.
Photos by Richard Casey

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