HOME HARDWARE TEAM TAKES SECOND WIN OF THE YEAR AT RIVERSIDE September 21, 2008. Don Thomson Jr. and the Home Hardware Chevrolet scored their first victory of the 2008 NASCAR Canadian Tire series (NCATS) season at Sun Valley Speedway the ...
HOME HARDWARE TEAM TAKES SECOND WIN OF THE YEAR AT RIVERSIDE
September 21, 2008. Don Thomson Jr. and the Home Hardware Chevrolet scored their first victory of the 2008 NASCAR Canadian Tire series (NCATS) season at Sun Valley Speedway the furthest western track on the circuit. After taking the checkered flag at Riverside Speedway near Antigonish, Nova Scotia during round twelve this past Saturday night the Home Hardware team are winners from coast to coast.
As is the norm, the Home Hardware Chevrolet was among the quickest cars starting right from the first practice session. It was teammate J.R. Fitzpatrick that would claim the pole position for the start and Thomson would line up third, directly behind his #84 teammate.
From the drop of the green to begin the action it was the two teammates that would swap the lead back and forth for more than 100 laps. "The Home Hardware car was good all day, good in practice, qualified third and we ran really good on long green runs and that's exactly what we wanted for this race" said Thomson who would be back out front from lap 162-181.
A lot of drivers will talk about being out front as the place to be. As the Home Hardware Chevrolet driver would find out however, trouble can lurk anywhere, even for the leader who has slower cars to deal with. "Some of the cars in front of me just checked up and I got collected, nothing I could do about it" he said. As the race wore on Thomson would have a bowed up hood to deal with on the Home Hardware Chevrolet and with constant wear and tear some of the other fiberglass bodywork also began to dangle from the front of the car.
The drooping bodywork posed a dilemma for the team. Do they have Thomson bring the Home Hardware Chevrolet to pit road to make repairs or risk a possible black flag penalty from NASCAR. Crew Chief Sandy Hamilton made the call to pit under caution for repairs and then count on their driver to mount a charge toward the front. The entire Home Hardware team performed as they hoped.
With yards of tape holding the body panels in place Thomson began to work his way through the field as best he could. "The car wasn't quite as good very, very late in the race" said Thomson afterwards. But the team made the right call to come in, we didn't want to risk getting a black flag once the race went back green".
In the closing stages Thomson had fought his way back toward the front of the field and into a podium finishing position. It was then that a little racing luck played a role in helping them to the finish. "As luck would have it, the two leaders got together and because of the circumstances I inherited the lead, I'll take a win any way you can get it" he smiled.
It was a one-two finish for Fitzpatrick Motorsports as Thomson was followed to the finish line by his teammate in the #84 Fitzpatrick Motorsports Chevrolet, J.R. Fitzpatrick
Don Thomson sits second in the overall championship standings, just 67 points behind the leader with one race remaining.
The 2008 NCATS schedule will conclude with the final event this coming Saturday, September 27th at Kawartha Speedway. You can watch all thirteen races this season on TSN. For information about the NCATS including schedule, results and more, log onto www.nascar.ca