USAR: Hickory: Mark McFarland race report

McFarland, Sears Auto Center Chevy Fight Way To 12th-Place Finish In Hickory USAR Hooters Pro Cup Event Pete Knight Racing Driver Survives Ill-Handling Race Car, Crash To Maintain USAR Southern Division Points Lead Mooresville, NC (August 3,...

McFarland, Sears Auto Center Chevy Fight Way To 12th-Place Finish In Hickory USAR Hooters Pro Cup Event
Pete Knight Racing Driver Survives Ill-Handling Race Car, Crash To Maintain USAR Southern Division Points Lead

Mooresville, NC (August 3, 2008) -- Mark McFarland and his No. 81s Sears Auto Center/Knight's Racing Chevy battled their way to a 12th-place finish in the USAR Hooters Pro Cup 4 Brothers 250 at Hickory (NC) Motor Speedway Saturday.

The finish allowed the Winchester, VA driver to maintain his USAR Southern Division points lead.McFarlandwill take a 44-point advantage over Michael Ritch into the final regular season race at Bristol Motor Speedway Wednesday, August 20.

"It could have been a lot worse," said McFarland, who owns a 927-884 advantage over Ritch in the standings. "It seemed like Michael was struggling as much as we were. It was like you were really good or you were really off. We were pretty much really off and to come out with the point lead heading into Bristol was big for us. We'll just go there and try to win the race. That's what we try to do every week. If we can do that, the points will take care of themselves." J McFarland was all about taking care of business at Hickory Saturday, but an ill-handling race car slowed the efforts of his Pete Knight Racing Chevy. Despite the balky mount, McFarland was still able to qualify fifth (15.657 seconds) and run in the Top-10while pitting three times for adjustments during the first 105 laps Saturday.

"The car was real tight and we could make it real loose," said McFarland. "No matter what we did, it just wasn't working for us. We did everything we could to make the car better. We weren't losing that many positions, but we just weren't successful no matter what adjustments we made. It was a pretty frustrating night."

Things got even more frustrating for McFarland when he got turned around and collected in a three-car wreck that also involved Caleb Holman and Brad Rogers on Lap 145.

"I had gotten into the 75 car (Holman) a couple laps before the accident," said McFarland. "I slid up into him in the middle of the corner. My car was really tight and I didn't mean to hit him. I didn't do it on purpose. Anyway, he got loose and I was able to get around him. Then a couple of laps later on the restart, he just lifted me up and turned me around. It was just racing I guess. You have to take the bad with the good."

Multiple pit stops under caution put McFarland one lap down to the leaders. Despite heavy damage and his car bottoming out on the race track showering sparks, McFarland was able to get back on the lead lap on the 161st circuit. From there on, it was a race of survival as McFarland somehow managed to stay on the lead lap and finish a solid 12th despite all the problems. J "We struggled the whole time we were there," said McFarland. "We never could get what I wanted out of the car, it was just acting up. To finish 12th isn't a bad finish, but it sure wasn't what we wanted."

McFarland and his No. 81s Sears Auto Center/Knight's Racing Chevy will try to get back on the winning track this weekend when they travel to South Boston (VA) Speedway and a USAR Hooters Pro Cup Northern Division event. The Miller Lite 250 will take the green flag at 7 p.m. Eastern Time.

-credit: pkr

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About this article
Series Stock car
Drivers Caleb Holman , Mark McFarland