Westfield, Massachusetts' Dale Quarterley came to Holland (N.Y.) International Speedway sporting a new sponsor on the hood and fenders of his 1/4LEY Racing Chevrolet. Bully Hill Vineyards has joined the team for three races this season: Watkins...
Westfield, Massachusetts' Dale Quarterley came to Holland (N.Y.) International Speedway sporting a new sponsor on the hood and fenders of his 1/4LEY Racing Chevrolet. Bully Hill Vineyards has joined the team for three races this season: Watkins Glen International (August 9th), Lime Rock Park (October 11), and Saturday night's Sunoco/Burnham Boilers 150.
"We called them just knowing that they didn't have anything signed for Watkins Glen," Quarterley said. "We ended up coming to terms with doing Lime Rock also, and then, because their race is kind of in their backyard and we didn't have anybody on board for this race, we'd come and play with them here too."
The newly-named Bully Hill Vineyards Chevrolet started its career with a fifth-place qualifying effort on the 3/8-mile oval.
"There's less than a tenth of a second between the pole-winning time and tenth place, so the tour is definitely starting to come around," Quarterley said before the race. "There's ten or twelve guys who can win. In our case, every week we've been getting better. We're starting to be able to fine-tune the car rather than coarse-tune it. In qualifying last week we were seventh; this week we were fifth. And we're closer to the front of the field time-wise this week than we were last week. We were two tenths off last week, and now we're three hundredths off. This is helping us at the start of the races. Starting in the back, even if we had a decent race car, twenty laps into the race you're involved in something that had nothing to do with you. Hopefully a better qualifying effort will help us stay out of things like that. These short tracks are supposed to be my weak places, but if we can show we can be competitive here, on a tight short track, we'll really be able to move up some when we get to the big tracks."
Quarterley's race got off with a tough break as the car starting in front of him didn't get up to speed when the green flew, sending him back to eighth place. He took seventh on a lap 19 restart, but didn't really get going until after the halfway point. He moved up to sixth on lap 80 and challenged for fifth four laps later, but couldn't complete the pass. He continued to race in a tight group of cars that ran side-by-side for most of the last half of the race until a lap 117 caution caused things to settle down, and he ran seventh to the finish.
"The inside groove, at the beginning of the race, had just killer traction," he said afterwards. "But something happened to Ryan Moore on the start and the inside groove just didn't go, and I got stuck behind him and lost four or five spots. Once I got outside, which you couldn't get into because they were bumper to bumper, I got some positions back little by little, I got up to sixth. Like last week, it's a good car and it's consistent, but I'm just lacking that little bit of traction coming up off the turn. So it would maintain for a while, but then it would start to fall off. Most of the guys around me were falling off too, so I still got by some people. We have a consistent car, we were seventh last week and we got seventh this week.
"People who weren't at the race track should have been, there was just excellent racing," Quarterley continued. "At one point there were three groups that were three-by-three-by-three in the middle of the turn, the row in front of me, my row, and the row behind me. If somebody messed up a little bit it would have wiped out nine race cars at once. But everybody was giving and taking; it was just excellent racing all night. There's only a cars with dents on them and those were just mistakes. Competitor-wise and fan-wise, it was a great race night."
Quarterley now gets a weekend away from the track as the Busch North Series will not return to action until July 12th with the running of a 150-lap race at the Thompson International Speedway, located in northeast Connecticut.