Eddie MacDonald’s hopes to repeat last year’s fourth place finish at Dover International Speedway were dashed with a flat tire early in The American Real TV 150. The Grimm Construction Chevy qualified 13th (22.813 sec.-151.178 mph) for the K&N Pro Series East’s 12th race of the season with the team confident a solid finish expected but it was not to be.
“Even though we qualified 13th, we felt the car would be good over the long run but you never know,” said MacDonald after the race. “The car was just a little loose early on but I was just out there riding knowing that we had the break at the halfway mark to make any adjustments. We have been very successful here in the past so we knew what we had to do but things don’t always go the way you plan in racing.”
With the #71 riding in the 14th position, a cut rear tire on lap 36 forced MacDonald to the pits. While entering pit road, the caution flag flew over the track. “We shot ourselves in the foot right then,” said Eddie Mac. “We should have kept going and then pit. We would have been only one lap down but we ended up two laps down. It is really difficult to make up two laps on this track because it is so fast so we just had to ride around and hope for the “lucky dog” to get us back on the lead lap.”
With Darrell Wallace and Brett Moffitt lapping the slower cars, MacDonald was not able to get the “lucky dog” until the fifth caution of the race on lap 72 that led to the halfway break. The #71 restarted the second half in the 20th spot one lap down. On the next caution on lap 105 MacDonald rode in the 16th position but was not eligible for the free pass.
“It was really frustrating to have to wait and hope for the free pass,” said the veteran driver. “We couldn’t race anyone to get the lap back and that was the worst part. We made it to 11thwhen the final caution came out on lap 146 but we didn’t get the free pass. It really would not have mattered much at that point since it was a green white checker finish.”
The checkered flag waved on lap 154 with the Grimm Construction Chevy posting the 11th place finish one lap down. It was only the second time this season the team has not finished in the top ten. MacDonald remained in sixth place in the point’s race with two races left on the schedule. The team will race next at Greenville Pickens Speedway October 27th in the Kevin Whitaker Chevrolet 140 that was rescheduled due to an earlier rain out. The season concludes at Rockingham on November 3. Speed will televise The American Real TV 150 on Thursday, Oct. 4 at 3 p.m.
“We have two races left on the schedule and we want to finish up strong. The team appreciates the support of our fans especially the fans from the Waymart, Pa area that traveled by bus to watch the race. That is really cool and we thank them,” said MacDonald.