BNS: Stafford race report

STAFFORD SPRINGS, Conn. - It's July on the Busch North Series, NASCAR Touring, and Martin Truex Jr. is hot. Especially hot in Connecticut. The 21 year old New Jersey driver won his second race in three starts, with a second place sandwiched in...

STAFFORD SPRINGS, Conn. - It's July on the Busch North Series, NASCAR Touring, and Martin Truex Jr. is hot. Especially hot in Connecticut.

The 21 year old New Jersey driver won his second race in three starts, with a second place sandwiched in between, by taking the ASB NASCAR 150 at Stafford Motor Speedway Friday night before a near-capacity crowd. Coupled with a win at Thompson International Speedway two weeks ago, it gave him back-to-back victories on Nutmeg State ovals. Truex became the fifth two-time winner of the 2001 season and moved up to sixth in the Busch North Series standings.

Truex started third, took the lead from Kelly Moore on a restart at lap 26, and was never challenged thereafter. Busch North Series point leader Mike Olsen worked his way from eighth on the grid to pass Moore for second with just over 50 laps to go, but never made a serious run at the lead and finished .31 second behind Truex. The title chase showed little change as Moore held on to finish third. Olsen now leads Moore by 138 points after 12 of 21 races.

Tracy Gordon took the checkered flag fourth and gained two places to third in the point standings, while Dennis Demers worked from 18th at the start to fifth at the finish despite a wild ride across the infield grass early in the race. Brad Boissonneault, a graduate of Stafford's NASCAR Weekly Racing Series program, scored the best Busch North Series result of his career by taking sixth. Bill Penfold, Tom Bolles, Bryan Wall, and Dale Shaw completed the top ten.

Truex averaged only 51.704 miles per hour as seven caution periods comsumed exactly one-third of the 150 laps. He easily won the Gatorade Front Runner Award, contributing $750 to his total winnings of $10,025. Eddie MacDonald captured both the $1,000 Raybestos Rookie-of-the-Race Award and the Flowmaster Star of the Race Award, the latter for improving 15 places from 28th at the start to 13th at the finish.

Bud Pole winner Ted Christopher lasted only 25 laps before parking with engine trouble. His qualifying lap at 20.019 seconds, 89.915 miles per hour was well short of the track record.

Attrition was high, with just 21 of the 30 starters on the track at the finish, although 16 were on the lead lap. Six drivers were eliminated by accidents, but no driver injuries were reported.

The Busch North Series makes its second appearance of the season at the Seekonk Speedway in Seekonk, Mass., this Saturday night, August 4, for the Coca Cola 150.

-Al Robinson

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About this article
Series NASCAR
Drivers Martin Truex Jr. , Ted Christopher , Eddie MacDonald