Hillier Survives Rough Race at Grays Harbor ELMA, WA (August 27) -- Chad Hillier and the ...
Hillier Survives Rough Race at Grays Harbor
ELMA, WA (August 27) -- Chad Hillier and the #5c DIRT Inc. Maxim were fast in Monday's World of Outlaws event at Grays Harbor Raceway; they just couldn't dodge enough errant racecars.
Collisions with Jonathan Allard early in the "B" Feature and Brooke Tatnell during the first lap of the "A" Feature resulted in rough night at the track made famous by the late, great Fred Brownfield.
"On the start of the 'B,' Allard drove into the side of us, and bumped us almost all the way off the racetrack," Chad said. "By the time we gathered it back up, we fell back quite a ways. That was a bummer because we had a good enough car to transfer into the feature. When you lose four or five positions on the start, it's tough to catch back up.
"We used a provisional because we thought we had a decent car, but (Steve) Kinser and Tatnell got together on the back stretch right in front of me. Tatnell got sideways and I had nowhere to go. I drove up over the front of him. It was a bad deal."
Hillier's 109.383-MPH lap was the 22nd-fastest time trial in the 42-car field and .427 seconds off fast-qualifier Joey Saldana's pace. He stated inside the third row and finished eighth in the star-studded Second Heat Race.
"Qualifying wasn't the best, but we were close," Chad said. "'We needed a little bit more. That one row (in the heat race) really makes a difference.
"There were plenty of good cars in our heat race, that's for sure. We needed to be just a little bit better to transfer out of it. We were a little too free in the heat, but we made some changes for the 'B' and the 'A' that helped quite a bit.
"It was unfortunate we couldn't run all 40 laps in the feature. We just couldn't stay out of trouble, but that's the way it goes sometimes. It just wasn't one of our better nights. It seemed like everything we did didn't go well for us."
Finishing 26th in the main event allowed fellow World of Outlaws Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year candidate Sam Hafertepe Jr. to close to within 10 points of Chad in the standings.
Hillier and his DIRT Inc. teammates are looking forward to Wednesday's World of Outlaws event at Cottage Grove Speedway, a high-banked, ¼-mile oval in Cottage Grove, OR.
"It should have a good race at Cottage Grove," Chad said. "They've put quite a bit more banking into it. You get into lapped traffic pretty quick there. I've run there quite a bit, so I know what to expect. It's one of those West Coast tracks we used to hit once or twice every year. I just hope our luck doesn't keep going the way it has. Maybe that will be the place it turns around."