BES: Loudon II: Tracy Gordon preview

Woodworks Racing Returns to NHIS With Eye On Showdown Goal Haverhill, Mass. (Sept. 12, 2006) - At the start of the 2006 NASCAR Grand National Division, Busch East Series season, the No. 33 Woodworks Racing/Archer Corporation-sponsored Ford team...

Woodworks Racing Returns to NHIS With Eye On Showdown Goal

Haverhill, Mass. (Sept. 12, 2006) - At the start of the 2006 NASCAR Grand National Division, Busch East Series season, the No. 33 Woodworks Racing/Archer Corporation-sponsored Ford team owned by Fred Skaff and driven by Tracy Gordon were looking at running part-time, racing five of the eleven races on the series schedule. But as the team embarked on the first of those races, it found success and, after adding a pair of short-track races to their workload, now has a goal of breaking into the top-fifteen in series points to qualify for the Toyota NASCAR All-Star Showdown in October.

Two races provided the catalyst for the new goal. The firs was at Holland International Speedway, the third East Series race of the year but the first for the Woodworks team. Gordon finished a strong fourth, the first top-five for the Woodworks team. The second was at New Hampshire International Speedway in July, where Gordon again finished fourth but was gaining ground on the leaders in the closing laps.

Gordon returns to NHIS on Saturday, September 16 for the second race of the year at the superspeedway, and the start of three straight weeks of racing to wrap up the 2006 campaign. There were lessons learned the first time around the "Magic Mile" that Gordon expects will help the team finish even closer to the front this time around.

"We had a real good set of shocks on the car in practice in July," he said. "But we tried something different for the race and it wound up being not as good as what we practiced with. So we're going to go back to those shocks and see if that makes the difference between a fourth-place car and a winning car. We'll run a softer front end this time around and get the car really digging into the track going into the corners."

Gordon is 21st in points after skipping three of the first four races of the year. But he's only 148 points out of fifteenth place, the last points position that gets an automatic invitation to the fourth annual Toyota NASCAR All-Star Showdown, which pits the best of the Busch East Series against the best of the NASCAR Autozone West Series in a nationally-televised race on October 21st. Gordon's got his eye on earning an invitation to that event.

"It's a long shot, but we can do it," he said. "If we get out of Loudon with a top-five, and then go to Dover and run in the top five there, it's just a matter of getting through Lime Rock and seeing where the chips fall. If some of the guys ahead of us have trouble, that'll help us, but we're not going to wait on them, we're going to try and do it all on our own."

Race fans can watch the NHIS race when it's broadcast live on HDNet television, whose broadcast begins at noon. The race will be replayed on HDNet at 7:00 p.m. that evening, and then again on Thursday, Sept. 28 at 5:30 p.m. on SpeedTV.

Following Saturday's race at NHIS comes next Friday afternoon's race at Dover (Del.) International Speedway's high-banked concrete mile, and then the season wraps up the following Saturday at Lime Rock Park's 1.53-mile road course.

-credit: wr

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