Goulds Pumps NASCAR Busch Series driver Mike McLaughlin heads to the Bristol Motor Speedway this weekend for the Cheez-It 250. McLaughlin has enjoyed a love-hate relationship with the tough half-mile speedway. The Waterloo, NY native didn't have...
Goulds Pumps NASCAR Busch Series driver Mike McLaughlin heads to the Bristol Motor Speedway this weekend for the Cheez-It 250. McLaughlin has enjoyed a love-hate relationship with the tough half-mile speedway. The Waterloo, NY native didn't have a very good first impression of the Bristol Motor Speedway, he missed both races there in 1994 and struggled with accidents and a mechanical failure during his next 4 races at Bristol.
McLaughlin figured it was time for a new approach, and solicited the help of one of the all-time Bristol greats, Harry Gant. The two were together on the Kyle Petty Motorcycle Charity ride when, Mike's wife, Katie suggested McLaughlin spend some time with Gant talking about Bristol. After a few hours of discussing the unique characteristics of the facility, McLaughlin returned in 1997 with a vengeance. McLaughlin qualified and finished in 2nd place, thanks to a little help from Harry Gant.
Since that day, McLaughlin's Bristol runs have been up and down, running well most of the time, but never really having the results to show for the efforts. McLaughlin hopes to change that this weekend and put the Goulds Pumps Chevrolet back near the front of the pack. And if he does manage to wind up in Victory Lane, be sure he will send out a big thank you to Harry Gant.
<pre> MIKE McLAUGHLIN'S BRISTOL CAREER RECORD
YEAR START FINISH LAPS STATUS 1995 35 30 100/250 Mechanical 1995 26 21 171/250 Running 1996 25 27 219/250 Accident 1996 13 38 10/250 Accident 1997 2 2 250/250 Running 1997 9 16 249/250 Running 1998 26 6 250/250 Running 1998 13 17 242/250 Accident 1999 37 27 206/250 Accident 1999 14 39 91/250 Accident
Ø McLaughlin suffered a broken hand during the spring race in Bristol last season when he was involved in a multi-car accident on the backstretch.