ACT Late Model Tour: Emily Packard
Devil’s Bowl Speedway Race Report
WEST HAVEN, Vt. – Emily Packard of East Montpelier, Vt., scored a career-best ACT Late Model finish of 10th in the Spring Green 113 at Devil’s Bowl Speedway in West Haven, Vt., on Sunday, May 5. Packard’s first career ACT Top-10 came on the heels of a 15th-place qualifying effort, after which she patiently steered the No. 9 Northstar Fireworks/Berlin Optical Expressions Chevrolet through traffic to begin her march into the Top-10. Packard, 16, fought for track position over a couple of late-race restarts, but emerged from the side-by-side battle on the half-mile oval with one of the best results of her young Late Model career.
WHO: Emily Packard, East Montpelier, Vt.
CREW CHIEF: Neal Woodward, Georgia, Vt.
TEAM: Emily Packard Motorsports No. 9x Northstar Fireworks/Berlin Optical Expressions Chevrolet
SPONSORS: Northstar Fireworks, Fecteau Homes, Berlin Optical Expressions, Yipes! of Barre, VT Shifter Karts, GossCars.com, Be The Match, Rutland Regional Medical Center, R.G. Paving
WHAT: ACT Late Model Tour Spring Green 113
WHERE: Devil’s Bowl Speedway, West Haven, Vt. (.500-mile banked oval)
NEXT RACE: May 11, Subway Fresh Fit 150, Canaan Fair Speedway, Canaan, N.H. (.333-mile oval)
EMILY, HOW DOES IT FEEL TO GET YOUR FIRST CAREER TOP-10 ON THE ACT LATE MODEL TOUR?
I feel great. It was a good day for us all around. The guys did an awesome job. The car was set up really well. We probably just should have left everything the way it was, but we were chasing the track too much in practice. Before the heat race, we pulled everything back out except for one adjustment, and the car was good.
WAS THIS THE BEST CAR YOU’VE DRIVEN AT DEVIL’S BOWL?
It was really good. We worked the wheels off that car, picking cars off one by one coming up through the field. We were Top-10 in practice all day, and we got up to as high as fifth, I think. That was great. It was a booster. We knew we were going to be good even in the heat race.
I fell back for a while at the start – my lane on the start just went backwards, so I did lose a few positions. We just said, ‘OK, we’ve got 113 laps here. Let’s stay calm and pick them off one by one.’ I got in a groove with Joey (Polewarczyk), and we started going to front.
DID YOU THINK YOU HAD MORE THAN A 10TH-PLACE CAR?
I think we had a Top-5 car, but coming into the weekend I said I would be happy with a Top-10 finish. With how tough ACT racing is and having all the restarts at the end, I’ll definitely take it.