Bill Penfold Fights Loose Car to Finish Seventeenth at Beech Ridge Bill Penfold brought his VIP Charter Coach-sponsored Penfold Motorsports team to Beech Ridge Motor Speedway just down the road from their home base to take part in the third and...
Bill Penfold Fights Loose Car to Finish Seventeenth at Beech Ridge
Bill Penfold brought his VIP Charter Coach-sponsored Penfold Motorsports team to Beech Ridge Motor Speedway just down the road from their home base to take part in the third and final visit paid to the track by the NASCAR Busch North Series. Penfold struggled with a loose car on a new tire compound, bringing it home in seventeenth position. Penfold moved up one place in the series standings to fifteenth.
In practice, Penfold put in many laps trying to get a handle on a new compound of tire mandated for the race on this third-mile track. Finding the car loose, Penfold and the Bob Harrison-led crew settled on a setup that would serve for both qualifying and the race.
Qualifying found Penfold eleventh fastest, recording a lap 16.264 seconds (73.783 MPH).
"The car was really good, it's been running good all day so we expected to do well," he said afterwards. "It's a little bit loose but that's Beech Ridge in the sun. It's greasy, but you've just got to drive it. I like Beech Ridge, and I'm starting near the front so we should have something for them I hope. I don't think we'll have tire trouble, but it's going to be greasy and I think you'll see a lot of bumping and sliding because the cars aren't going to handle the way they used to. We'll just go from there and see how it goes."
In the race, Penfold struggled with looseness and could not make progress through the field. The handling did not improve on the car despite pit stops for adjustments just 38 and 113 laps into the event. While Penfold could hold his own and race towards the top ten, he was lapped by the leaders and could just hold on to finish seventeenth.
"The car handled horrible," he said after the race. "We did all right in time trials but it was loose all day, I had all I could do just to keep it straight. We just didn't hit it and it just kept getting worse and worse. One of the shocks lost pressure and we're checking some other things. It wasn't going worth much today so I just tried to stay out of people's way.
Penfold was critical of the tire choice, a harder compound, for the event.
"The tire was horrible, you couldn't get any grip," he said. "Look at the times, the track's Limiteds were faster than we were. We've got an $80,000 car and a $5,000 Limited is faster than us. NASCAR's got to do something with these tires. Everybody was sliding out there. That's not racing, that's just survival. NASCAR has got to do something about these tires. We've been complaining all year, for six years, and they keep making us run these tires. What we ought to do is take the officials, put them in a car and tell them to go out there and try to drive on those tires."
Penfold now looks to put in a good performance in next Saturday's race, a 125-lap race to be nationally broadcast from New Hampshire International Speedway. The race will be shown live on NBC at 2PM.
For more information on the team, visit its website at http://www.penfoldmotorsports.com.