Jeff Anton's Promising Thompson Race Ends Early With Accident Thompson, Conn. (June 29, 2006) - Jeff Anton brought out a sharp silver and blue No. 30 Anton Racing Chevrolet for the NASCAR Grand National Division, Busch North Series' fourth race...
Jeff Anton's Promising Thompson Race Ends Early With Accident
Thompson, Conn. (June 29, 2006) - Jeff Anton brought out a sharp silver and blue No. 30 Anton Racing Chevrolet for the NASCAR Grand National Division, Busch North Series' fourth race of the 2006 season at Thompson International Speedway. And while a tenth place qualifying effort and a race that found the second-year driver running as high as eighth were encouraging, a suspected mechanical failure sent Anton's car spinning shortly after halfway through the event, forcing his retirement from the event.
Anton, who finished 19th at Thompson last year, showed improvement by timing in eighth fastest in the first practice session and tenth fastest in the second session. He qualified tenth, a fourteen position improvement over last year's time trial result at Thompson.
"It was all right," the Russell, Massachusetts driver said. "I think we could have got a little more in qualifying but in the first lap it got a little wiggly and I didn't think the tires were going to come in that much on the second lap. They came in a little bit better than I thought so I guess I could have run it a little harder. I think we've got two tenths left in that car for the race."
Anton ran as high as eighth during the running of the Pepsi 100. He had a minor setback after a lap 51 restart where he fell to thirteenth, but he was on the comeback trail after traffic settled down.
"The car was a decent car to start off," he said after the race. "For the first fifty laps I couldn't pass anyone, but nobody could pass me. I could stay with anyone in front of me. But then the car just got tighter and tighter."
Anton struck trouble on lap 61, though, as the car spun in the third turn and headed to the outside wall.
"I don't know if the Panhard bar let go or something, but I got a quarter-way into the turn and all of a sudden the thing just came right around on me. It didn't seem like it was a brake problem, like it had too much rear brake. It seemed like something just let go. We saw that the Panhard bar was broken, and I think one of the truck arms is broken too," Anton said.
He retired from the event with damage to the left rear corner of his car, and was listed as 24th in the race's final results. He fell one spot in the season points standings to run eleventh after four of eleven races.
"It's going to be a long week until Lake Erie," he said.
Lake Erie Speedway is the next stop for the Busch East Series, with it holding a one-day show capped by a 150-lap feature event on Saturday, July 8th.