BNS: Stafford III: Tracy Gordon race notes

Sixth place finish at Stafford allows Tracy Gordon to maintain fifth place points position. Tracy Gordon, driver of the Tic Tac Chevrolet on the NASCAR Busch North Series, recorded a sixth place finish in the series' next-to-last race of the...

Sixth place finish at Stafford allows Tracy Gordon to maintain fifth place points position.

Tracy Gordon, driver of the Tic Tac Chevrolet on the NASCAR Busch North Series, recorded a sixth place finish in the series' next-to-last race of the year at Stafford Motor Speedway after starting eighth. The finish allowed Gordon to hold on to the fifth place position in the season points standings, within striking distance of Kelly Moore in fourth place.

Gordon's weekend started out with an eighth place qualifying effort, which disappointed him a little.

"I have a better car than we qualified," he said. "I pinched it a little bit coming off the turn which cost me. All it takes is to lose a tenth of a second and you're off the pole. I've got a real good car for the race. I'm hoping to settle in early and just ride for a while. We'll come in for our pit stop and hopefully get out near the front, and win the race. I've got a car that can definitely win the race."

In the race's early laps, Gordon fell all the way back to fourteenth as he was caught in the high lane and freight-trained. He finally worked his way to the bottom groove and started picking his way back towards the front. He was back to tenth on a lap 41 restart, and was running in that position when a second caution flew on lap 56. Under this yellow, Gordon pitted for fresh right-side tires, returning to the track in seventeenth.

Halfway through the race, Gordon was back to twelfth as he worked traffic. Eleventh with a third of the race still to run, he welcomed the change to single-file restarts and took advantage of those to return to the top ten. He was seventh heading into the final laps, but continued racing to the checkers as he took sixth place from Brad Leighton with just five laps to go. His sixth place finish was the eleventh of the season.

"What really hurt us was all the cautions in the second half of the race," he said afterwards. "I needed a few laps to get the car going, get the tires heated up, and get the shocks working the way they were supposed to do. All these cautions really hurt. Early in the race, I got stuck on the outside on every restart. I got stuck on the outside twice behind lapped cars and they cost me so many positions.

"We had a good, solid top three car today, at the end of it I was probably three tenths faster than the leader, but track position killed me," Gordon continued. "If I knew we were going to have that many caution laps, I wouldn't have pitted, but you can't predict that kind of stuff. We had a great car, it's just one of those days. Hopefully we'll go back to Lime Rock, have a good run there, and pull out a top five for the season."

The final Busch North race of the year will be held in two weeks at the 1.53-mile road course at Lime Rock Park in northwest Connecticut.

-www.tracygordon.com.

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