McBlog: A look back at New Hampshire
By Michael McDowell
Michael McDowell is a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and Nationwide Series driver from Glendale, Ariz. His “McBlog” appears weekly during the NASCAR season at www.KTAR.com and www.PhoenixRaceway.com . In this installment, McDowell looks back on his weekend at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
This was a long week for me, but a fun one. I was in Boston working on some Kart Track business on Tuesday and Wednesday. Justin Marks and I are building a World Class Karting facility in Mooresville, NC. We had some fun running at F1 Outdoor near Boston. Then, on Thursday, I hung out with my old co-driver and team owner from the Rolex Sports Car Series days, Rob Finlay. I like hanging with Rob because I get the royal treatment.
I always love going to New Hampshire not just because of the nice weather, but also because of the lobster. I probably only have lobster once or twice a year and it is always while I am racing in New Hampshire.
New Hampshire is one of the races I look forward to. It races a lot like Phoenix International Raceway and those types of tracks usually fit my driving style well. I pulled double duty again this weekend which means Fridays are action-packed. Two Nationwide Series practices, one Cup practice, plus “go-or-go-home” Sprint Cup qualifying (by the way, we made the race).
It is has been a real struggle for everyone on the MacDonald Motorsports #81 team. We have had a lot of trials this season. We were really looking for a good uneventful weekend and we got just that. We qualified the car No. 11 and finished 20th. Now I know 20th isn’t great, but it is solid for our team. MacDonald Motorsports is a family-owned small team. We are working on a very limited budget and competing against the big dogs. We have to run used tires at some points of the race and we have only five full-time guys that work at the shop. Managing our expectations is hard, but it’s something we have to do to continue progressing as a team.
Next up is Daytona, this will be with the new “Car of Tomorrow” Nationwide car. The race airs Friday at 4:30 p.m., Arizona time, on ESPN.
See you at the Races!
Tickets for 2010 at Phoenix International Raceway can be purchased online at www.phoenixraceway.com/Tickets-Events/Events/2010/November-2010.aspx or by calling 1-866-408-RACE (7223). The PIR Ticket Office is open weekdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and weekends from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at 125 S. Avondale Blvd., just south of I-10 at Exit 131 in Avondale.
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Related PIR News
Kevin Harvick did something Sunday that no driver had ever done in the 52-year history of Phoenix International Raceway. The 39-year-old from Bakersfield, Calif. scored a victory in his fourth consecutive race in the same professional series at the legendary one-mile oval in the Arizona desert, leading 224 of 312 laps to win the CampingWorld.com 500.
Daytona 500 winner Joey Logano put on a dominating display at Phoenix International Raceway in Saturday’s AXALTA Faster. Tougher. Brighter 200, the fourth race of 2015 in the NASCAR XFINITY series.
Ruben Pardo earned his first NASCAR Mexico Series win at Phoenix International Raceway in the Toyota 120 on Friday. After starting on the pole, Pardo fell as low as 12th but fought back to the front in the late stages.
Pop music sensation Tori Kelly will perform the national anthem prior to the start of the CampingWorld.com 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Phoenix International Raceway on Sunday, March 15, highlighting the pre-race festivities. Kelly’s performance will be included in the live national television broadcast of the race on FOX at 12:30 p.m. local time (3:30 p.m. Eastern).
Phoenix International Raceway is encouraging fans to prepare for race day traffic by arriving early and enjoying the full NASCAR experience during the CampingWorld.com 500 event weekend, March 13-15. In addition to the CampingWorld.com 500 on Sunday, March 15 at 12:30 p.m. PST, the race weekend at PIR will include the Axalta Faster. Tougher. Brighter. 200 NASCAR XFINITY Series race on Saturday, March 14 at 1 p.m. PST and the Toyota 120 NASCAR Mexico Series race on Friday, March 13 at 7 p.m. PST.