Sour Weekend For McGilton In Iowa NEWTON, Iowa (Tuesday, October 17, 2006) - - ARCA RE/MAX Series rookie Phillip McGilton was excited about heading to the new Iowa Speedway for the 2006 ARCA RE/MAX Series finale, unfortunately engine fatigue ...
Sour Weekend For McGilton In Iowa
NEWTON, Iowa (Tuesday, October 17, 2006) - - ARCA RE/MAX Series rookie Phillip McGilton was excited about heading to the new Iowa Speedway for the 2006 ARCA RE/MAX Series finale, unfortunately engine fatigue early in the race put a damper on the team's spirits.
The first practice session of the weekend yielded the 25th fastest effort with a quick time of 24.202 seconds at 130.155 mph. "We're pretty happy with our practice effort," said the driver of the No. 42 SI Performance-Gould's Electric Ford Taurus. "I think we still have a lot of speed left in our car, we're going to make some adjustments heading into qualifying and we should be good to go."
53 drivers and teams took time trials efforts Saturday eyeing 41 spots. McGilton maneuvered a lap around the 7/8-mile speedway in 23.996 seconds or 131.272 mph good enough for 18th on the starting grid.
"We picked up just over two-tenths of a second from practice, and that's the fastest we've been since we unloaded," continued McGilton. "Our times improved from the open test and that was one of our goals. We did that, now we'll look for a good race."
The drivers took the green flag on Sunday with huge cheers from the stands with McGilton quickly diving into competition. The driver hovered inside the top-20 for the first several circuits of the race, before disaster struck on lap 29 of the 250 marker race. The motor quit coming off turn four forcing McGilton to bring his machine to pit road and the attention of the SI Performance Motorsports team. The team surveyed the issue and determined it was fatal resulting in a disappointing 40th place finish.
"This wasn't the way we wanted to end our season," said the dejected driver following the race. "We've worked really hard to run strong, but we just can't control the mechanical issues. It happens, its part of the game. I want to thank my team for all their hard work this weekend and year. We ended this season with some misfortunate, but we'll look to bounce back in spectacular fashion in Daytona."
"Our sponsors have been really good to us. We're sorry that we didn't have the finish we wanted in Iowa, but we're looking forward to Daytona. We should be really strong and competitive. We're going to have a shot at victory for sure."
In all, McGilton competed in six ARCA RE//MAX Series races this year with a career best finish of ninth earlier this summer at Kansas Speedway. The team also qualified a career best of 15th at Kansas Speedway (July 2006) and Nashville Superspeedway (August 2006).
"We had a pretty good season. It was definitely a learning experience for us. We had some ups and we had some downs, but that's all part of getting off the ground we're looking forward to a strong 2007 racing season."
The team will make an announcement regarding next season in the near future.