BNS: Stafford: Dale Quarterley race summary

Dale Quarterley's third at Stafford is his best finish of 2002. Dale Quarterley, from Westfield, Massachusetts, picked up his best NASCAR Busch North Series finish of the 2002 season when he put his Land O Lakes Chevrolet on the podium with a ...

Dale Quarterley's third at Stafford is his best finish of 2002.

Dale Quarterley, from Westfield, Massachusetts, picked up his best NASCAR Busch North Series finish of the 2002 season when he put his Land O Lakes Chevrolet on the podium with a third place finish in Friday night's Carquest 150 held at the Stafford Motor Speedway in Stafford Springs, Connecticut. The finish puts Quarterley in the top ten in season championship standings.

His afternoon started off with ninety minutes of practice, followed by time trials. After the qualifying session, Quarterley was set to start the 150-lap contest in the ninth position.

"It's not too bad," he said. "Little by little, just like last year, we are getting a little more consistent and getting closer to the front. We just started the year with three different race cars than we had last year and we are trying to figure them all out. It's just taking a couple of weeks to do it. I'm actually happy with ninth. Looking at the times, we're not that far off. Now, we're going to make a couple quick changes to go for the main event and see what happens."

Quarterley spent the early laps of the race riding in eighth place, moving up to seventh following a lap 23 restart. He took sixth when Matt Kobyluck's car slowed, and was joined by Mike Johnson and Tracy Gordon for some of the best racing on the track, for sixth place, after the halfway point.

Under caution, on lap 104, Quarterley joined the majority of leaders on pit road to change two tires and make adjustments to his car. He returned to the race in seventh, but quickly passed Dennis Demers for sixth and then took advantage of Bryon Chew's bobble to take fifth. Forty laps from the finish he was fourth at the expense of Martin Truex, Jr., and survived a bump from Dale Shaw to take third on lap 135. By the time he was up to this position, the two leaders were well ahead and laps ran out before Quarterley could complete his run through the field.

"We've been quick here a bunch of times, but for some reason, good finishes keep eluding us," he said after the race. "This was a good race to just kind of bide our time and relax. We didn't think we were going to stop for tires so when I was riding in eighth, the leaders were beating on each other and I was just cruising around. That is what really helped me at the end. I had enough tire left at the end that I could hold the guys behind me off while still getting some of the guys ahead of me.

"We pitted and put two tires on when the second real caution came out," Quarterley continued. "We came back out and five laps later we were fifth. Whatever happened, we just went right through the field like nothing. For once, things worked in our favor. At the end of last year things went our way like that, but so far this year we've gotten burned every time the yellow came out. We didn't really want to see the yellow this time, but it ended up working in our favor."

Quarterley will take his top ten points position and puts it on the line next Saturday at the Holland Speedway outside of Buffalo, New York.

-dqr-

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series NASCAR
Drivers Martin Truex Jr. , Dale Quarterley , Mike Johnson , Bryon Chew