Race 20 of 33: Zippo 200 at Watkins Glen International
Track Details: 2.45-mile road course / 82 laps
No. 08: Gray Gaulding Result: 15th
No. 07: Ray Black Jr. Result: 22nd
Team 08 GPS PURE Chevrolet Camaro:
Gray Gaulding and his No. 08 GPS PURE team started from the 15th position for the first of four road course races on the NASCAR Xfinity Series schedule. The first stage started off hectic with three cautions flags. On lap 11 Gaulding had advanced a few spots to the 12th position when the first caution of the day waved. On lap 14 the second caution of the day waved after the 4 sent the 7 car spinning through the bus stop. Gaulding was able to avoid the early chaos and finish the first stage in the 9th position, accumulating two precious stage points.
Gaulding started stage two from the 19th position after a few of the leaders stayed on track after the opening stage break. On lap 34 the fourth caution of the day waved after the 18 car suffered mechanical issues. With only 4 laps remaining in the second stage, Gray Gaulding restarted from the 18th position. At the end of the stage the 08 team came across the line in the 17th position.
Crew Chief Patrick Donahue called for his driver to stay on track, which put the 08 starting the final stage from the 11th position. On lap 57, Donahue called Gaulding to the pits for their last scheduled stop of the day. On lap 69 debris covered the middle of the bus stop, which brought out the sixth caution of the day. The 08 stayed out on track under the caution and restarted the race from the 7th position with only 10 laps remaining. On lap 72 the 98 car made contact with the 11 car entering turn 1, triggering a multi-car accident. Gaulding was able to steer clear of the carnage, but lost valuable track position in the progress. Gaulding was in the thick of the battle for a top ten position on the last restart until the 20 car got turned sideways in front of the entire pack entering the esses. The 20 miraculously was able to keep from going around; however, the loss of momentum shuffled Gaulding back through the pack for the final laps. Gaulding was able to fight his way to finish in the 15th position. The result marked the team’s tenth top-15 finish of the season. With only 6 races remaining until the playoffs, Gaulding remains 13th in the NASCAR Xfinity Series point standings and trails Brandon Jones by 102 points after the Glen.
“I thought we had a really good day. I can’t thank GPS PURE and all my guys enough for putting together an awesome race car. Patrick and the guys called a great race, but unfortunately that last wreck with Christopher Bell, we just lost a lot of track position trying to miss that wreck. I don’t know how he saved it, but he did and I just couldn’t recover. I felt like we should have finished maybe tenth or eleventh, but overall I can’t say enough about our partners GPS Pure, Panini, World Wide Safety, everyone that supports us. We can’t hang our heads low because we had a good race car, we ran up front all day and unfortunately it just didn’t work out at the end. Stuff happens, but we’ll move on to next week.”
Bobby Dotter Thoughts on the 08 Team:
“I was really impressed with the 08 team again today. They proved they were a top ten team today. Unfortunately, we were just on the wrong side trying to miss the 20 car and we got shuffled back. I’m excited to bring this car to Mid-Ohio next week and duplicate our performance today.”
SS Green Light Racing driver Gray Gaulding and Ray Black Jr. is currently 13th in the NASCAR Xfinity Series points standings. With Watkins Glen in the books, Gaulding will shift his attention to another road course with Mid-Ohio next on the agenda. Coverage of the B&L Transport 170 at Mid-Ohio will begin Saturday August 10th at 3:00 PM ET on NBCSN.