By: Dick Casey
Eddie MacDonald returned to Thompson Speedway Motor Sports Park for Saturday’s Busch North Throwback 100 after an eight year series hiatus to post a thirteenth place finish. The Grimm Racing Team honored legendary Busch North driver Andy Santerre by displaying the Aubuchon Hardware paint scheme for the race. While the period wrap was a huge hit with Santerre and Busch North fans, the desired outcome was not achieved.
Eddie Mac started the 100 lap feature event in the 15th position and appeared to have a competitive car early on but the car developed a loose condition by lap 20 with the Rowley veteran saying, “It felt good early in the race and I was able to pass cars but then it really started getting loose so we decided to pit on the lap 31 caution for a minor adjustment. Even that little bit just flipped it and it was too tight. We made another pit stop but the car never got to where we needed it to be. In hindsight, we probably should have left it alone but we were trying to make something happen.”
After the lap 56 restart the Aubuchon Hardware/Grimm Construction Chevy raced from its 17th starting spot on the grid after pitting to the 12th position but the effects of the ill handling car took a toll on the brakes with Eddie Mac saying, “I was trying to drive the car in just like the others but when the car is not turning the way you want, you end up using a lot more brake. It ended up boiling the fluid so by the last 20 laps I had to keep pumping them and by the end the pedal was all the way to the floor. I didn’t even think it was going to stop when I got back to the pit.”
Eddie Mac did manage to hold off a serious challenger from the #9 car over the last 20 laps to hold on to the 13th place finish with the disappointed driver saying, “We really wanted to have a good showing for Andy (Santerre) and also to remember Rob Grimm’s first race as team owner. Rob bought the team during the 2007 season and Thompson was our first race together. Rollie (LaChance) and I are forever in his debt for everything he and his wife Karla have done for us.”
“When we first started together it was quite a different series,” recounted Eddie Mac, “It was more of a regional series but changed dramatically. I am proud of how competitive Grimm Construction has been through the years. This series is highly competitive now with most of the teams from the South with access to all the Cup technology and if you are just a little off as we were today, you are in for a tough outing. We have made significant changes to our other K&N car and hope to be able to compete for the win at Loudon this Saturday. We have three K&N wins at our home track and would like to add another. I just want to thank Andy (Santerre) for spending so much time with us this weekend. He has been a friend of mine and Rollie for many years and it was an honor to race his colors. I also want to thank the crew members for all their hard work in the rain and heat over the two days. We had so many friends stop by to wish us well it was awesome.”
Eddie Mac and the Grimm Racing Team will compete in the KNPSE United Site Services 70 on July 15 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway as part of the NASCAR Cup weekend. Practice is schedule for Friday beginning at 4pm. with qualifying slated to begin at 7pm. Saturday’s race will take the green flag at 6:45pm.