Tracy Gordon's Return To Busch North Series Brings Seventeenth Place Finish (Loudon, N.H. - July 24, 2004) - Strong, Maine's Tracy Gordon made his first start in the NASCAR Grand National Division, Busch North Series on Saturday when he took the...
Tracy Gordon's Return To Busch North Series Brings Seventeenth Place Finish
(Loudon, N.H. - July 24, 2004) - Strong, Maine's Tracy Gordon made his first start in the NASCAR Grand National Division, Busch North Series on Saturday when he took the wheel of the No. 33 Woodworks Racing/Archer Corp. Ford Taurus at New Hampshire International Speedway and drove it to a seventeenth place finish.
"We learned a ton today, and when we come back we'll be a lot better," he said after the race.
Gordon and the Fred Skaff-owned team found themselves struggling through Thursday's practice and qualifying day, timing in around twentieth fastest in the two practice sessions. Qualifying found the troubles continue, as Gordon was only 24th on the starting grid.
"We're off a little bit right now, but we're banging heads to see if we can get it going," he said. "We'll come up with something good for the race. We've been off a little bit the whole time we've been here, but we're putting our heads together and with all the smart people we've got on this team, we'll come up with something that should be good for the race. The car may race good like this, but we're going to make our final practice count and see if we can't come up with something that'll be better than what we've got now."
The race got going and Gordon dropped into line to run 25th through the early going. Pitting with the rest of the field under caution on lap 31, changes were made to the car and Gordon was sent out to see if the changes were any improvement. A second stop was made under caution on lap 50, and things were beginning to look up as Gordon came back through to run eighteenth shortly after the race returned to green.
Sixteenth at the race's halfway point, Gordon couldn't make any further progress. But he kept his mind on how the car could be made better for the next time, and finished seventeenth.
"We put a spring rubber in the right rear on one of the pit stops and the car tightened up, and that showed me that we had been going in the wrong direction with the changes we had made up to that point," he said after the race. "I wish I could have today all over again, knowing now what I wish I knew this morning.
"We had two things that made us tighter, with the spring rubber getting put in and then the stagger closed up," Gordon continued. "They didn't help us much, but in the long run they're things we can learn from, and we learned a ton. This is a hard, hard working bunch of people, that's for sure. They want to finish up front, and our finishing where we did certainly isn't because of a lack of effort. This is the first time that I've ever run this type of setup, and now that I've got 125 laps with it under me, I'll be able to come back and have a lot more input to offer about how we adjust on it. The seventeenth place finish didn't do a lot for me, but we can come away from this race with a lot more information to come back here next time and run in the top ten or even a little bit better."
Gordon will return to Busch North Series competition in September when the series returns to New Hampshire International Speedway for another 125-lap race. For more information, visit www.woodworksracing.com.