Kip Stockwell Twenty-Second At NHIS (Loudon, N.H. - Sept. 16, 2005) - Kip Stockwell, enjoying his best season yet racing in the NASCAR Grand National Division, Busch North Series, posted a 22nd place finish in the second and final 2005 race...
Kip Stockwell Twenty-Second At NHIS
(Loudon, N.H. - Sept. 16, 2005) - Kip Stockwell, enjoying his best season yet racing in the NASCAR Grand National Division, Busch North Series, posted a 22nd place finish in the second and final 2005 race at New Hampshire International Speedway on Friday. Stockwell, from Braintree, Vermont, came back from being a lap down to get that finish, which allowed him to maintain thirteenth in the season points standings.
Stockwell was 31st in the only practice session scheduled at the Magic Mile, but didn't have to worry about qualifying as rain showers moved in and cancelled time trials. He was awarded the thirteenth starting position as the field was lined up by points.
During the longest green-flag run of the race, Stockwell wound up going down a lap to the leaders on lap 45. For every restart after that, he was either the second or third car a lap down, denying him the opportunity to get back on the lead lap through the beneficiary rule. But he continued in the race, not pitting, and finally he earned his lap back under a lap 98 caution.
At that point, Stockwell came to pit road to make sure he had enough gas to get to the finish of the 125-lap event. He pitted again under a lap 107 caution and put on fresh tires, but he never got to use them as rain again interfered with the Busch North Series and, after running a dozen laps under caution, the race was shortened to 119 laps and the checkers thrown.
I'm really happy, and really proud of the team," he said. "We finished about where we thought we'd end up. I'm happy because the car's in one piece and we have a minimal amount of work to get it ready to go to the next race. I think we waited a little too long to put on tires, but we weren't on the lead lap and we didn't have anything to gain with new tires unless we were on the lead lap. We wanted to get the 'lucky dog' to get back on the lead lap before stopping for fuel and tires, and, once we did that, we were good to go. I think we had a better car with new tires than anybody around us, because we were keeping up with them before when we were on old tires. I just didn't have a reason to run them hard because I was a lap down.
"We were in really good shape for the end of the race, and then we got the rain," Stockwell continued. "We would have liked to have another seven or eight laps of green at the end, but you can't control the weather. We had a great day, we did exactly what we wanted to and kept the car in one piece. Next week at Dover we'll go down and have some fun at the track and enjoy the weekend, because we've been having a lot of fun at the racetrack this year."
Stockwell and the rest of the Busch North Series will head to Dover International Speedway in Delaware for next week's race, with practice and qualifying on Thursday and the race on Friday afternoon after NASCAR Nextel Cup qualifying.