Bill Penfold Eagerly Anticipates Watkins Glen's Mohegan Sun 150 Busch North Race (Yarmouth, Maine - August 10, 2004) - To say that Bill Penfold, driver of the No. 0 VIP Charter Coach Chevrolet Monte Carlo on the NASCAR Grand National Division,...
Bill Penfold Eagerly Anticipates Watkins Glen's Mohegan Sun 150 Busch North Race
(Yarmouth, Maine - August 10, 2004) - To say that Bill Penfold, driver of the No. 0 VIP Charter Coach Chevrolet Monte Carlo on the NASCAR Grand National Division, Busch North Series, is looking forward to racing at Watkins Glen International this weekend would be a massive understatement.
"I start thinking about going back to the Glen the minute we pulled off the race track last year," the Yarmouth, Maine driver said. "I like it that much."
Penfold, who will race with the Busch North Series in Saturday afternoon's Mohegan Sun 150, has been to the Glen seven times heading into this event, and scored his best finish at the 2.45-mile road course last year when he finished fifth in a rain-shortened race.
"If the race had gone another ten laps, I would have won it," he said. He was running the highest of all the cars that had pitted, running behind four cars that took a chance that rain would shorten the event. If the rain had held off until after those cars made their pit stops, Penfold would have inherited the lead, which he had every intention of keeping.
While Penfold has an enviable record at both Watkins Glen and at Lime Rock Park, the other road course on the Busch North schedule, he admits to having no formal training in the road racing discipline.
"I never went to any schools for it," he said. "When I was a kid, I used to take off in cars and trucks and go up the road. Cops would chase me, and that was my training. It's not much different from NASCAR's pioneers being involved in their moonshine running. Road racing is just something that naturally came to me. I can't explain why, but I love it."
Penfold also loves the fans at the New York track.
"They're into it so much out there, they really appreciate us being out there," he said. "A couple of years ago the race was red-flagged and they stopped the field on the backstretch and the drivers all got out of their cars. I went over to the fence, over to the fans. A little girl came out to the racetrack and brought me some water. We hung out on the guardrail and poured water on each other's head.
"The people at the Glen are fun, and now that I've gotten to know a lot of these people that gives me more of an incentive to be at the Glen. It's a special place," he continued.
After finishing fourth at Lime Rock Park in May, Penfold can't wait to get to the second road race of the Busch North season this Saturday.
"I can't wait to get to the Glen," he said. "I'm going to be there early and I'm going to be rested. I just love it out there. I like spending time out there, and the more time I spend out there the more relaxed I get, the more comfortable I get. It means that much."
The Mohegan Sun 150 will be broadcast live on Saturday, with coverage starting at 1:30 p.m. EDT. It will also be rebroadcast on SpeedTV at noon on October 16th.