BNS: Thompson: Fred Skaff race notes

Brake troubles relegate Fred Skaff to twentieth at Thompson Fred Skaff returned to behind the wheel of the Woodworks/Archer Corporation Ford in the Pepsi Racing 150, a NASCAR Grand National Division, Busch North Series race at the 5/8-mile ...

Brake troubles relegate Fred Skaff to twentieth at Thompson

Fred Skaff returned to behind the wheel of the Woodworks/Archer Corporation Ford in the Pepsi Racing 150, a NASCAR Grand National Division, Busch North Series race at the 5/8-mile Thompson International Speedway. While hopes were high for a good run at one of Skaff's home tracks, brake troubles plagued the car on long runs, leaving Skaff twentieth in the final rundown.

Practice times from the afternoon sessions were encouraging, with Skaff eleventh fastest in the second session. But he couldn't back that time up in qualifying, and wound up twenty-fifth on the starting lineup.

"We'll be all right," he said. "I would have liked to have qualified in the top ten, we were close to that in practice. We changed the gear and I might have over-reacted to the gear. I could hear the RPMs and I might have let off a little early, maybe, or the gear just slowed us down in the corner. We changed the gear back so we should be good for the feature. I just hate starting that far back, but I'll just have to be careful. Last year we got up to fourth in 75 laps, so I know we can get the job done."

Skaff was quickly into the top twenty as the race's opening laps were run. He was looking to move up further, but brake problems showed up and caused him to change the way he had to drive the car. He had to slow as his front brakes were non-existent and the rear brakes were heating up. A lap 48 caution allowed Skaff to pit the car and have the Woodworks crew look it over and make some adjustments, and he was sent back out.

"Early in the race, we were awesome," he said afterwards. "We made it through a couple of crashes, passed a few cars, and was running down Carey Heath. Then it was like somebody flipped a switch. I had brakes one minute, and the next minute I had all rear brake. I had so much rear brake that when I got into the corner and got on the brakes, it wanted to go around."

As cautions flew and the brakes were given opportunities to cool down, they'd come back on the restarts and he could run competitively with lead lap cars. But when the brakes heated up, he had to slow down to keep the car under him in the corners. Skaff continued in the race until the finish, winding up twentieth at the checkers.

"It's a decent finish," he said. "The car's in one piece, but I'm a little disappointed because I wanted to be there at the end. We had a good outing and that'll pump us up a little bit for Loudon. We had a good outing. I'd have liked to have finished better, but the car's in one piece."

The next appearance of the Woodworks/Archer Corporation Ford will be on Saturday, July 19th, at New Hampshire International Speedway. Mike Gallo will return to the driver's seat of a brand new car for the race, which will be run in conjunction with the NASCAR Winston Cup Series, Busch Series, and Featherlite Modified Series.

The Thompson race will be shown on Speed TV on July 26th. For more information on the Woodworks Racing team, visit its website at http://www.woodworksracing.com.

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