Eddie MacDonald crossed the finish line in the rain-shortened New Hampshire 125 in fifth place in the K&N Pro Series East race at the “Magic Mile.” The Rowley, Mass. veteran felt the car was much better than the top five run especially after starting on the outside pole position with a qualifying run of 127.363mph (29.905 sec.) in the 36 car field.
“The car was great in the qualifying run but when we started the race it was really tight in and tight off. We knew the rain was coming so we didn’t want to take a chance of pitting then getting stuck in the back if the rain ended the race, which it did on lap 78. We were hoping the leaders came in on the lap 32 caution so we could make the adjustment but everyone stayed out. I know if we got the chance to work on it we could have driven to the front. The Daymark/Grimm Construction Chevy was definitely fast in practice and qualifying so it was a little disappointing we didn’t get the chance to work on it during the race but we’ll take a top five run.”
Practice was delayed due to the rain and when the cars took to the track, the teams were limited to one hour to work on the cars with MacDonald saying, “There were a few different set-ups we planned on trying but we were limited to only a couple but we were obviously very pleased with the set-up we had for qualifying. It would have been nice to get the pole and we only missed by a couple of tenths but anytime you can start near the front at Loudon, it is a huge advantage. Rollie, the crew, and I have had a lot of success here in the past and thought we had something for them but the rain took care of that. All in all, a top five finish here is satisfying but we had hoped for more.”
Eventual winner Brett Moffitt passed the #71 for second place early on as MacDonald battled to stay with the leaders saying, “The car was tight from the start so I just had to settle in where I could run and wait for a chance to pit to make the adjustments. We ended up running in the fifth spot with no one pushing us from behind so that was a comfortable place to be. When the yellow came out on lap 32 we were just going to follow the leaders and unfortunately everyone decided to stay out. We knew the rain was all around us so it was not surprising anyone hit pit road. After that we were stuck in fifth place and when Bouley hit the backstretch wall we knew it was all over. It was raining with the track getting slick, and it was getting dark. I have to stay that NASCAR and the track officials did a great job getting almost everything in with all the rain we had. If we didn’t have that short delay to finish the Cup qualifying we probably would have finished our race but that is how it goes. This is my favorite track and I enjoy running here.”
“This has been a tough year for us so to have a fifth place run is great for the crew. I can’t thank them enough for the hard work and sacrifices they make to make this happen. Rollie had a great set-up for us and it would have been great to see what happened in the long run. We are heading to Dover for our final race of the season next week and that is another track we have had success so it would be nice to have another solid run there to finish this season on a high note. I have to thank Rob Grimm and all our sponsors for everything they have done for us. We have a lot of loyal fans and that means a lot to us. Hopefully we will give the something to cheer about next week.”