BNS: Loudon: Mike Gallo race notes

Sanford, Maine's Mike Gallo, driver of the Woodworks Racing/Archer Corporation Ford Taurus on the NASCAR Grand National Division, Busch North Series, brought out a brand new car for Saturday's New England 125, the second race Gallo has run this ...

Sanford, Maine's Mike Gallo, driver of the Woodworks Racing/Archer Corporation Ford Taurus on the NASCAR Grand National Division, Busch North Series, brought out a brand new car for Saturday's New England 125, the second race Gallo has run this year. While new car teething problems kept the team on its toes throughout the weekend, when race time came around, Gallo put together a solid run to finish sixteenth and on the lead lap.

The new car, which hadn't seen the track before the weekend, responded immediately to changes and was fourteenth fastest in the opening practice session. Sixteenth in the second session, the team, led by Steve Bird, set about gearing up for qualifying. Gallo's qualifying effort was not up to speed, though, and he would start the race thirtieth.

At the start of the race, Gallo put on a charge and was quickly up to the top twenty. A caution on lap 23 meant an opportunity to pit arose, and the Woodworks team answered the call to add enough fuel to get to the end of the race as well as replace the right-side tires.

It wasn't much after the pit stop that Gallo was again on the move and back in the top twenty. After a pair of quick cautions, a long run ensued and Gallo's No. 33 Ford showed its strength. Fourteenth at the halfway point, he continued making up positions as other drivers fell off the pace. He was knocking on the door of the top ten with thirty laps to go when the last caution came out. Some drivers elected to pit while Gallo stayed out. As the race wound down, those drivers who came in worked their way past Gallo, but he still kept his car on the lead lap and, despite having a run-in with a visiting driver from the west coast, finished sixteenth.

"The car was absolutely incredible at the start of the race," he said afterwards. "We came in and did a two-tire change and took on gas, and the car got tight, I guess we didn't adjust it enough. It was just tight as tight can be. I passed a ton of cars, missed a lot of wrecks, and made it exciting. I passed Mike Stefanik and a lot of those guys, but unfortunately they came in and made adjustments and we didn't, we chose track position all day, I don't know if that was right. We also put stickers on when we pitted and that must not have been the way to go. We'll know better for next time. We gave it our all and got a lead lap finish, and hopefully got the sponsors some good airtime on TV.

"I'd like to thank The Woodworks, Archer Corporation, Don Black, and my car owners Elaine and Fred Skaff. I feel great, I could go out there and do 300 more laps, I just wish we had a little better car."

Gallo will return to the track on August 16th for the running of the Dealmaker 150, the second annual Busch North Series race held at the Adirondack International Speedway. For more information on Gallo and the No. 33 team, visit its website at www.woodworksracing.com.

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