Kingsport Times News Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Sports NASCAR/Racing

MacDonald captures K&N victory at BMS

March 15th, 2014 9:00 pm by Dave Ongie

MacDonald captures K&N victory at BMS

BRISTOL, Tenn. — Eddie MacDonald led only one lap in Saturday's K&N Pro Series East race at Bristol Motor Speedway.

Fortunately for MacDonald, the lap he led was the last one.

After starting 13th, MacDonald rocketed to the front late in the PittLite 125 and overtook Ben Rhodes on a green/white/checkered restart to earn the victory.

"We had a real good car," MacDonald said. "I knew we were pretty fast. I was just hanging back and seeing what the leaders were going to do. Then I got up on the wheel. We were just driving the wheels off the car trying to get to the front.

"I've always wanted to come here and win and to do that, that's just unbelievable."

MacDonald started fourth on a restart on lap 109, but less than a lap later, he was challenging Rhodes for the lead. Rhodes, who led most of the way, finally seemed to slow in the closing laps while MacDonald's No. 71 car seemed to hit its stride.

With the laps winding down, MacDonald got next to Rhodes and the two cars made contact coming out of turn 4, allowing Gray Gaulding to shoot past them and take the lead on lap 121. But as that exchange was occurring, the caution came out for a wreck further back in the field, and the running order reverted back to the previous lap.

When the field lined back up for the green/white/checkered finish, it didn't take McDonald long to get past Rhodes, who was passed by Gaulding and finished third.

"I just hate it for the guys that the car is all torn up and we weren't able to come home with the win," Rhodes said. "That contact tightened up the car a little bit. It hurt us a little bit. I was lucky to save it."

Gaulding said it was frustrating that his pass for the lead didn't hold up, but he was still proud of a good showing at BMS.

"I felt like we did a good job coming up through the pack," Gaulding said. "We were just too tight. I was having to Kyle Busch it and just overdrive every time. I thought if we had been a little better through the corner, we would have had a shot." 

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