Craig Goess Continues Streak of Seven Straight Top-10s at New Jersey Motorsports Park Despite Accident, Blown Engine During Practice Millville, N.J. (August 16, 2010) - Craig Goess was determined to beat the road course when he arrived at New ...
Craig Goess Continues Streak of Seven Straight Top-10s at New Jersey Motorsports Park Despite Accident, Blown Engine During Practice
Millville, N.J. (August 16, 2010) - Craig Goess was determined to beat the road course when he arrived at New Jersey Motorsports Park. He was even more determined not to let the course beat him. Overcoming a myriad of obstacles this weekend, Goess fought his way to an eighth-place finish at the Millville, N.J. road course.
[esr.jpg] The weekend of the ARCA Racing Series Garden State 150 presented by American Red Cross got off to a rough start for Goess and the No. 81 Greenville Toyota of N.C. In the first practice on Saturday morning, Goess hit the fence in the Eddie Sharp Racing Toyota.
"It happened in the S-curves before I got up to the bridge," explained Goess. "I got a bit sideways, and as the elevation changed back down, the rear tire hit the rumble strip. I spun in a 180-degree angle, and there was no catching it at that point. I slid into the fence."
The No. 81 ESR crew got right to work and brought out the back-up car for Goess to take out for the final practice of the weekend.
"We took out the other car and ran two laps with it," said Goess. "Then, the motor blew out. Things were not going our way. I knew I was just going to have to go out there and work as hard as I could for qualifying."
As the crew changed the engine in the back-up car, Goess looked to get back on the track for qualifying. He was prepared to do the best he could with a back-up car and engine. Goess had a solid qualifying effort and laid down a lap of 85.551 seconds (94.680 mph), good enough for a 17th- place starting position.
The green flag flew on the Garden State ARCA 150 by American Red Cross at 1 p.m. Sunday. Goess, starting in the 17th position, aimed for consistency and a clean race.
The 29-year-old battled to stay in the top-15 for most of the race. In only his third-career road course start, he looked to finish better than his 10th-place finish at NJMP in 2009. Goess focused on hitting his marks on the road course and worked his way through the field.
In the final laps of the race, Goess was able to climb into the top-10, passing Steve Arpin for the eighth position.
"We were trying to have that final push at the end," said Goess. "I tried to pass two other cars but couldn't get into a situation to capitalize on any mistakes made by any of the leaders."
Casey Roderick raced his way to the checkered flag and earned his first career ARCA Racing Series victory. Goess crossed the finish line eighth, increasing his streak to seven consecutive top-10 finishes. This season, Goess has six top-five and 10 top-10 finishes.
"We really didn't know what we had with a car and engine with only two laps on this track and a few laps from qualifying," said Goess. "We did the best that we could with what we had. Of course, I would have loved to drive the primary car for the whole weekend, but I am really proud of our guys. Everyone had a difficult weekend, and I think that we handled everything that was thrown on us. I think that the battle that we faced this weekend shows our teams perseverance to get back toward the top. After everything that went on this weekend, a top-10 finish is pretty good."
Goess fell to second place in the ARCA Racing Series championship points standings to Frank Kimmel, who finished fourth in the race. Kimmel is now only 10 points ahead of Goess with seven races to go in the 2010 ARCA Racing Series season.
Goess and the ARCA Racing Series will head to the one-mile dirt track at the Illinois State Fairgrounds on Sunday, August 22.