Jeff Anton Scores Second Top Ten In 2007 At Thompson Thompson, Conn. (July 14, 2007) - Jeff Anton continued making progress towards the top of the NASCAR Grand National Division, Busch East Series standings after posting his second top ten of...
Jeff Anton Scores Second Top Ten In 2007 At Thompson
Thompson, Conn. (July 14, 2007) - Jeff Anton continued making progress towards the top of the NASCAR Grand National Division, Busch East Series standings after posting his second top ten of the season at Thompson International Speedway on Saturday night. He now stands seventh in the series points after finishing tenth at the .625-mile oval in northwest Connecticut despite having a tight race car necessitating a pit stop one-quarter of the way through the hundred-lap race.
Anton's short-track car was up to the challenge of one of the biggest short tracks the series runs at after some changes were made to the car's front suspension geometry. The Russell, Massachusetts driver did not get much of a chance to work on the car in practice as brake problems showed up early on, requiring extensive repairs.
"On the first lap out there I stepped on the brakes and the car wanted to come around on me," he explained. "It just didn't feel right, but at first we didn't think it was a brake problem. Eventually we realized it was a brake problem when we dialed in as much front brake as we could and it still wasn't working right. We checked it out and found one of the master cylinder reservoirs broke. While we were switching that out, one of the fittings got screwed up and we had to take the rest of practice to tear apart the brake lines in the car to fix that."
The repairs were concluded in time for qualifying, and Anton made his time trial laps without incident with a twentieth-place effort in his No. 30 Baran Institute of Technology/Engineered Floors, Inc. Chevrolet Monte Carlo.
"I had to take it pretty easy going into that first turn," he said.
>From that twentieth starting spot, Anton began the race and found his car to be a lot tighter than he expected - tight enough to give up his track position on lap 27 and come onto pit road for a chassis adjustment. This put him back in 22nd place in the thirty-car field, but he didn't stay there long. Through the second half of the race he was constantly battling race traffic, eventually entering the top fifteen to run fifteenth when caution flew on lap 96. The race was extended with two attempts at a green-white-checker finish and in those final few laps of racing, Anton moved into the top ten.
"I thought we would be a little better than what we actually were," he said. "The car tightened up on us a lot, a real lot. We'll have to learn from this and apply it to the next track we run at. We just stayed out of trouble but we had to pit and try to free the car up, then come back through the field. There were some slow cars that made things pretty tough since this is basically a one-lane track like Stafford, so it's real tough to pass here.
"The car was better after we pitted," Anton continued. "We picked up two-tenths of a second, but we needed to go more. We couldn't come back in, though, because we had good track position and we didn't want to give that up late in the race. We rode along with what we had and got a decent finish with that."
Anton Racing hits the road next weekend for the first event the Busch East Series will hold at the Nashville Fairgrounds' Music City Motorplex. That race takes place on Sunday, July 22, with its being broadcast on HDNet live at 8:00 p.m.