Bill Penfold's Stafford race cut short. Yarmouth, Maine's Bill Penfold had a rough outing at Stafford Motor Speedway on Sunday afternoon. After qualifying an encouraging tenth on Saturday, things did not go as smoothly in the race. A spark plug...
Bill Penfold's Stafford race cut short.
Yarmouth, Maine's Bill Penfold had a rough outing at Stafford Motor Speedway on Sunday afternoon. After qualifying an encouraging tenth on Saturday, things did not go as smoothly in the race. A spark plug wire came off the engine, causing Penfold to lose power and go a lap down, and then a late race accident forced him to retire from the event with a 28th place finish.
Saturday was the better of two days for he VIP Charter Coach-sponsored Penfold Motorsports team, once the cause of the engine's being down on power was discovered.
"We found a couple of plug wires that were cracked," he said. "We drained the gas out, and it ran beautiful then. We changed everything we could, and we must have found whatever it was. We cured it. It's got plenty of power, and I'm really happy with it."
In qualifying, Penfold was tenth fastest.
"That was a good run," he said. "It got loose coming out. This car turns real good in the middle. We've had it turning too hard in the middle, though, so we're trying to slow it down a little bit. In practice, the car was really running good. It was steady, we were right up there in times. I didn't expect to pull a tenth place run off. I'm a horrible time trialer, but the crew did a hell of a job, that was their deal this time. They told me it would go, Bob changed a sway bar and really made it hook up. It should race real good."
While Penfold ran as high as seventh in the opening laps of Sunday's race, a spark plug wire fell off one of the plugs and with the lack of power, he started going backwards. He was racing side-by-side with Eddie MacDonald while trying to stay on the lead lap when the two bumped side-to-side, leaving MacDonald spun and Penfold a lap down. Under caution, he was held a lap for pulling up to pit too soon.
"The penalty for that has always been to restart at the tail of the field," he said after the race. "I don't know why they held me a lap for it. There's no consistency at all."
Penfold soldiered on in the race, picking up positions as other cars encountered difficulty. But a chain-reaction accident on a lap 96 restart left Penfold as the victim, crashing and inflicting heavy nose damage to his car. He drove it to pit road where he parked behind the wall, retiring due to the crash damage.
"It's discouraging," he said after the race. "We had a spark plug wire come off and that contributed to us getting down laps. We just wanted to finish the race and get a decent finish but they wouldn't even let us do that before we got wrecked. It's just a bad day all around, but we've got Lime Rock coming up next, and we always look forward to going to Lime Rock."
The Busch North Series wraps up its season at Lime Rock Park, a road course that Penfold counts as one of his favorite tracks. Practice and qualifying for the race will be held on Friday, October 11th, with the race to be run on Saturday, October 12th. For more information on the Penfold Motorsports team, visit its website at www.penfoldmotorsorts.com.