BNS: Loudon: Dale Quarterley race notes

Dale Quarterley Wins Siemens 125 At New Hampshire International Speedway (Loudon, N.H. - July 24, 2004) - Dale Quarterley won his first NASCAR Grand National Division, Busch North Series race of the 2004 season when he drove his Instabanc ...

Dale Quarterley Wins Siemens 125 At New Hampshire International Speedway

(Loudon, N.H. - July 24, 2004) - Dale Quarterley won his first NASCAR Grand National Division, Busch North Series race of the 2004 season when he drove his Instabanc Chevrolet to victory in Saturday's Siemens 125 at the New Hampshire International Speedway. Quarterley's win took place in front of a crowd estimated at 43,000 spectators as well as a live TV audience on HDnet.

Quarterley, who started the race from the 13th starting spot, also won he Powerade Power Move Of The Race Award, which goes to the driver who picks up the most positions during the running of each Busch North race.

Practice and qualifying took place on Thursday afternoon, and Quarterley did not offer many hints that he would be a contender for the win on Saturday. He only got a handful of laps in the first qualifying session after having to spend extra time replacing a broken oil line, and in the second session he was only fifteenth fastest. The struggle continued in qualifying, where he took the thirteenth slot.

"All told, we've got fifteen laps on the car, and this is the first time we've run it this year after making a lot of changes to it over the winter," he said after qualifying. "To be thirteenth after only getting fifteen laps on the track today, that's not too bad."

There was no on-track activity scheduled for Friday, but Quarterley and crew spent the day going over the car and taking some educated guesses at setup changes. Saturday morning saw the series take to the track for the final half-hour practice session. Those setup changes worked, and Quarterley was second-fastest in that session.

Quarterley ran as high as eleventh in the race before a lap 28 caution brought just about the entire field onto pit road. He entered the pits thirteenth and came out eleventh of those who had pitted, though there were three cars that did not pit at all at the front of the field.

Following a scramble at the front of the field following the lap 34 restart, Quarterley was up to seventh place. On lap 46, he passed series champion Andy Santerre to take fifth, and moved up to fourth on lap 64. He took third on lap 79 after a battle with Brian Hoar.

All that remained between Quarterley and victory was the father-son team of Kelly and Ryan Moore.

"With forty laps to go and with Kelly and Ryan pulling away from me, I just let them go knowing we'd get another caution," he said. "I was running the pace I was happy with and I wasn't hurting the car doing that. But we got down to twenty-five laps to go and we hadn't had that caution I was counting on and I started worrying that I was going to run out of time before I could catch them. They were starting to come to me even when I was still running my speed, but at that point I threw that strategy out the window and decided that I was going to go get them. If we weren't going to get a caution, I was going to have to get them on my own.

"I ran something like seven laps of absolute killer speed and that made up about half of the distance to them," Quarterley continued. "Then Kelly got racing with Ryan, and I ran them down in two laps. On the third lap, I just went by both of them to take the lead. It was so easy to drive right by them, I couldn't believe I got by them without having to work on them hardly at all."

Quarterley didn't have the win sealed just yet, though, as a lap 113 caution set up a five-lap run to the finish.

"I've lost so many races after late restarts - I'd already done that once this year at Lime Rock. But I decided that if Kelly was going to get past me, he was going to have to go through me. I'm going to keep it on the white line, no matter how slow I'm going to have to go to do that, that's what I'm going to do.

"On the first lap after the restart, I didn't look up in the mirror once," he continued. "We crossed the line for two to go, and I couldn't stand it anymore, I had to look in the mirror and saw I had two car lengths on Kelly. At that point, I figured I had the win. If they couldn't get me in the first two laps after the restart, they weren't going to get me in the last two."

Quarterley is now in a select group of Busch North drivers who have won on all three types of tracks that the series races on - short tracks (he has wins at Beech Ridge and Adirondack Speedways), road courses (he has multiple Lime Rock Park wins), and now on a superspeedway. With this win, he moves up three spots in the series points to fifth. But with all this success, he's still not satisfied.

"I want to take this car to Adirondack," he said, referring to next week's race at Adirondack International Speedway, where he is the defending race winner, "And I want to bring a different car back here to New Hampshire in September: a car that I think is even better than this one."

-ajc-

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About this article
Series NASCAR
Drivers Dale Quarterley , Ryan Moore