Eddie Mac Has "Heluva Good" Time at New Hampshire by Penny Aicardi
Outduals Trevor Bayne to Win a Thriller at the Magic Mile
Trevor Bayne (#1) and Eddie MacDonald (#71) raced in tight quarters at New Hampshire.  (51 Photos)

Eddie MacDonald had a “Heluva Good” time at New Hampshire Motor Speedway Friday night taking his first win at the famed one-mile track in a nail-biter finish. The Grimm Racing driver beat out Trevor Bayne for the win in a dramatic battle to the end. It was MacDonald's fourth career win and his first since his victory at Stafford Motor Speedway last year.
The pivotal action in the Heluva Good 125 unfolded following a lap 117 restart when MacDonald used a crossover move, cutting down low under Bayne, to take the lead. Bayne followed suit with the same move to reclaim the lead as the two continued to swap the top spot several times. The action was tight and dicey until a caution flew on lap 122.

The final restart, which extended the race to 127 laps to allow for a green-white-checker finish, lacked the same tension. MacDonald won the race by coming out of turn one ahead of Bayne and soaring to the checkered flag with little pressure.

“He was running me pretty tough there,” MacDonald said of his battle with DEI driver Trevor Bayne. “He kept driving me up the track, and it was getting real close coming off of two and off of four. He was kind of running me in the wall. I decided right in the center of the corner I would drop down and get inside of him so he couldn't really push me up into the wall anymore. It was a pretty good run though.”
Eddie MacDonald crosses the finish line.
Eddie MacDonald in victory lane.
Bayne, who had never even seen New Hampshire Motor Speedway until this week, settled for the runner-up spot.

“I think we had 10 lead changes in three laps if that's possible. I lost count after about the first three. It was fun racing. It would have been a little more fun if we had [victory lane] confetti on the car, but we'll take a second,” Bayne said. “I thought we had it until the caution came out. We had a restart there, and he started on the inside. I started outside in second. I went down in there and he washed up just a little bit - enough to get me in the loose stuff. He didn't touch me. We were giving each other room, but he got by me.”

In a surprising move, MacDonald gave up the second place spot at lap 81 to come down
pit road for tires - a strategy that paid big dividends for the Rowley, Mass.-driver.
“After Brian (Ickler) got the lead the car felt like it was going to blow a tire so I decided to come in and get a couple of right side tires. That was huge. I was a little worried about coming up through but everyone ran us clean.”

In all, the race had nine lead changes among six drivers. Among them were third-place finisher Matt Kobyluck, who took the lead from polesitter Austin Dillon at the drop of the green. He relinquished the lead to Rogelio Lopez on lap 36 when he pitted for fuel. Kobyluck reclaimed the lead on lap 107 and looked to be unstoppable until a caution tightened him up with MacDonald and Bayne.

“When we went back to green, I needed three or four laps to get heat back in the tires. I had old tires that were wore out so it took a little bit to get back going. I was a sitting
duck at that point,” he said. “For me, to come out of here, New Hampshire, with a top-three, is a huge day for us.”

MacDonald took the lead away from Lopez and the two set a commanding pace - pulling away from the field by 2.5 seconds. When caution came out, however, Ickler moved in to try his hand at the lead. On the restart, MacDonald and Ickler went side-by-side through the first three turns, but it was Ickler at the line.

When caution slowed the pace, MacDonald came in with Ickler heading up the field. As the laps wound down, Brad Leighton moved himself into position to challenge for the lead. He got that shot on a restart at lap 101. Leighton darted by Jesus Hernandez, who was running second, and continued on the low groove by Ickler in turn one. Coming out of turn two, contact was made and Leighton spun. NASCAR deemed Ickler was involved and sent him to the rear of the field.
“We were driving down into one and I took the lead turn one and held the lead through turn two. He poked me in the back getting off turn two. We got together, but I didn't put the backup alarm on. He drove in the back of me and that's all there was to it,” said Leighton, who still managed to pull off a top-10 finish after going to the tail end of the field.

“We were driving down into one and I took the lead turn one and held the lead through turn two. He poked me in the back getting off turn two. We got together, but I didn't put the backup alarm on. He drove in the back of me and that's all there was to it,” said Leighton, who still managed to pull off a top-10 finish after going to the tail end of the field.

Dillon finished fourth and extended his point lead to 59 over Matt Kobyluck, who moved up from fourth.

“It was a long race and it ended up well for us. There for a little while we were falling back, and we were a little worried, but we ended up with a good fourth place finish. I'm exceptionally happy with a top-five,” said Dillon.

Ricky Carmichael posted his career-best finish with an impressive fifth place finish.

“It was a great day. We messed up on our fuel stop. We had to pit for fuel twice. I honestly think we had a really good shot at it today. I came from behind a couple of times. This gets some momentum going and gets the guys pumped back up. I'm just ecstatic.”
NASCAR Camping World Series East-Heluva Good! 125 Results
At New Hampshire Motor Speedway
Loudon, N.H.
Lap length: 1.058 miles

       (Start position in parentheses)

       1. (10) Eddie MacDonald, Rowley, Mass., Chevrolet, 127 laps, 81.011 mph, $13,900.
       2. (6) Trevor Bayne, Knoxville, Tenn., Chevrolet, 127, $10,215.
       3. (4) Matt Kobyluck, Uncasville, Conn., Chevrolet, 127, $8,450.
       4. (1) Austin Dillon, Lewisville, N.C., Chevrolet, 127, $7,400.
       5. (12) Ricky Carmichael, Clearwater, Fla., Chevrolet, 127, $6,500.
       6. (7) Marc Davis, Mitchelville, MD., Toyota, 127, $5,900.
       7. (21) Mike Olsen, North Haverhill, N.H., Chevrolet, 127, $5,100.
       8. (24) John Salemi, Nashua, N.H., Chevrolet, 127, $4,600.
       9. (22) Brad Leighton, Center Harbor, N.H., Chevrolet, 127, $4,100.
       10. (2) Brian Ickler, San Diego, Calif., Chevrolet, 127, $4,200.
       11. (18) Dustin Delaney, Mayfield, N.Y., Chevrolet, 127, $3,550.
       12. (8) Jesus Hernandez, Fresno, Calif., Chevrolet, 127, $4,000.
       13. (11) Jody Lavender, Hartsville, S.C., Chevrolet, 127, $3,900.
       14. (33) Mike Johnson, Salisbury, Mass., Ford, 127, $4,800.
       15. (16) Jeff Anton, Russell, Mass., Chevrolet, 127, $3,200.
       16. (19) Max Dumarey, Gent, Belgium, Chevrolet, 127, $3,068.
       17. (23) Jonathan Smith, Beacon Falls, Conn., Chevrolet, 127, $3,000.
       18. (31) Charles Lewandoski, Stafford Springs, Conn., Toyota, 127, $2,950.
       19. (15) Jamie Hayes, Norlina, N.C., Chevrolet, 127, $3,400.
       20. (32) Joe Masessa, Franklin Lakes, N.J., Chevrolet, 127, $2,850.
       21. (28) Alan Tardiff, Lyman, Me., Chevrolet, 127, $2,800.
       22. (17) Craig Goess, Greenville, N.C., Toyota, 127, $2,750.
       23. (13) Bryon Chew, Mattituck, N.Y., Chevrolet, 127, $3,200.
       24. (26) Derek Thorn, Lakeport, Calif., Ford, 126, $2,675.
       25. (36) Chase Mattioli, Long Pond, Pa., Ford, 125, $2,650.
       26. (35) Antonio Perez, Mexico City, Mex., Dodge, 120, accident, $2,625.
       27. (29) Scott Bouley, Wolcott, Conn., Chevrolet, 120, $2,600.
       28. (3) Steve Park, East Northport, N.Y., Chevrolet, 118, $3,100.
       29. (14) Peyton Sellers, Danville, VA., Chevrolet, 118, $3,100.
       30. (20) Ryan Duff, Hazard, Ky., Chevrolet, 108, accident, $2,600.
       31. (34) Patrick Dupree, Saranac Lake, N.Y., Dodge, 108, accident, $2,600.
       32. (9) Rogelio Lopez, Aquascalientes, Mexico, Chevrolet, 102, $3,100.
       33. (30) Todd Peck, Glenville, PA., Chevrolet, 81, accident, $2,600.
       34. (5) Jeffrey Earnhardt, Mooresville, N.C., Chevrolet, 34, accident, $3,100.
       35. (25) Bobby Hamilton, Jr., Nashville, Tenn, Dodge, 23, accident, $2,600.
       36. (27) James Pritchard, Wharton, N.J., Dodge, 0, engine, $2,600.

       Race Statistics

       Time of Race: 1 hour 39 minutes 31 seconds
       Margin of Victory: .515 secs
       Fastest Qualifier: F.set as per rulebook, rain ( mph,  seconds)
       Caution Flags: 7 for 44 laps.
       Lead Changes: 9 among 6 drivers.
       Lap Leaders: M.Kobyluck 1-35; R.Lopez 36-41; E.MacDonald 42-70; B.Ickler 71-104;
       J.Hernandez 105-106; M.Kobyluck 107-118; T.Bayne 119-120; E.MacDonald 121-124; T.Bayne
       125; E.MacDonald 126-127.

Standings: 1. A.Dillon, 807; 2. M.Kobyluck, 759; 3. B.Ickler, 731; 4. T.Bayne, 731; 5. M.Davis, 702; 6. E.MacDonald, 690; 7. J.Hernandez, 677; 8. S.Park, 669; 9. R.Carmichael, 654; 10. J.Earnhardt, 631.