(Stafford Springs CT 06/30/2000) - Bill Penfold and the Penfold Motorsports team made the first of two visits to Connecticut's Stafford Motor Speedway Friday night for the running of the Carquest 150 NASCAR Busch North Series event. What started...
(Stafford Springs CT 06/30/2000) - Bill Penfold and the Penfold Motorsports team made the first of two visits to Connecticut's Stafford Motor Speedway Friday night for the running of the Carquest 150 NASCAR Busch North Series event. What started out as a promising day took a turn for the worse as engine troubles relegated the VIP Charter Coach Chevrolet driver to a 30th place finish.
After turning competitive times in the 75-minute practice session Friday afternoon, Penfold was disappointed with his 23rd starting position.
"My warm-up lap was actually faster than my time trial laps," Penfold said. "Coming out of turn four it pushed real bad and almost banged the wall, so I tried to make it up going in the next lap and got the car sideways, I was lucky to save it."
Confessing that he is not a good time-trialer, Penfold said, "I think everybody likes to see me come through the field with a fight. We'll get up front, it makes for a little work for the driver. Bob Harrison's really got the car under me today, we should get to the front with the VIP Chevrolet."
In the race, Penfold had worked his way up to the top 15 before electing to pit under caution on lap 59. Making a thorough pit stop to make adjustments, Penfold re-entered the race at the tail of the field and proceeded to make his way towards the front. This charge was halted at the race's halfway point when the car's engine started skipping, and on lap 78 Penfold was forced to retire from the event with engine troubles.
"Early on we had a push at the beginning of the race, but we were still picking off cars," Penfold said after the race. "We were biding our time because we knew we were going to pit. When we pitted we changed the tires and took some cross-weight out of it and even though we restarted on the end of the field, the car was perfect. All of a sudden, either the timing belt broke or the camshaft broke. That's two motors in two weeks. It's getting frustrating to have a good race car, and no matter how hard we're trying something's biting us, we can't get that monkey off our back."
The VIP Charter Coach team will return to action next Saturday in a 100-lap event held at New Hampshire International Speedway in conjunction with the NASCAR Winston Cup and Craftsman Truck series. The race will be taped by The Nashville Network and aired on Saturday, July 15th at 5:00 PM.
"I like running Loudon," Penfold said, looking forward to the next race. "I usually do pretty well there if nothing happens, but I've got that monkey on my back and it's not letting go. It's the perfect opportunity for somebody to put some money up and really help out a good-running team."