After battling Nick Sweet over the final fifteen laps, Eddie MacDonald fought his way to the lead on the final turn of the 50 lap ACT Invitational to capture the event for the second time in three tries after winning the inaugural. The “Outlaw” started deep in the pack in the 25th position before taking the lead on lap 32 of the 43 car field.
The #17 Hancock Electric Pontiac was fastest in practice and is the same car that won the inaugural event three years ago. A faulty coil burned Eddie Mac’s chances of sweeping both ACT races this season when his day ended with 14 laps remaining in during the Indy race weekend. MacDonald and crew chief Rollie LaChance were not to be denied this weekend. The epic battle with Sweet over the last 15 laps had the crowd on its feet while the race was not settled until the final turn on the final lap.
MacDonald appeared headed to a comfortable win after taking the lead with 18 laps remaining. However Sweet motored his way to MacDonald’s tail and the duo raced the final 15 laps door to door while swapping the lead four times. Two caution flags on laps 41 and 45 bunched the cars but it was the two leaders that set the stage for the incredible finish. The Hancock Electric Pontiac had the better restarts and was better in turns one and two but Sweet was very strong in turns three and four with MacDonald saying, “That car was fast. Every time I thought I had him cleared he was right at my door.
Nick drove an incredible race.”
Sweet took the lead for two laps on lap forty but MacDonald fought back on the outside. Eddie Mac regained the lead only to lose it again to set up the final lap with the two door to door all the way around the track. That is when the veteran driver made the move coming out of turn four to seal the win saying, “I didn’t know it was Nick in that car. I feel bad cutting him off but I wanted to do everything I could do to win. We were lucky at the end. I was so psyched to get my new sponsor Hancock Electric in victory lane. Kenny Thompson has been really great helping us out beginning this year in New Smyrna. It really feels good to be back in victory lane and I want to thank Rollie and the crew and our East team owner Rob Grimm for everything they have done. We are definitely going to enjoy this for a while. Our fans are the best and I am so happy we got this win for them to share with us.”