Race 27 of 33: Go Bowling 250 at Richmond Raceway
Track Details: 0.75-mile D- shaped oval / 250 laps
No. 08: Gray Gaulding Result: 22nd
Team 08 Panini Chevrolet Camaro:
Last week a late gamble on fuel by Crew Chief Patrick Donahue nearly earned the 08 team a spot in the playoffs. Although they did not win the race, the call proved successful with Gaulding bringing home a seventh place finish. If anyone thought not making the playoffs would kill the spirit of this small under dog team, you are sadly mistaken. The 08 team showed up in Richmond, Virginia with an attitude of something to prove. In the one and only practice session of the weekend, Gaulding went out and posted the fastest lap in practice. After a fantastic practice session, the team backed up their speed by qualifying in the ninth position for the race.
The race began and the first caution of the day waved almost immediately. After a quick clean up the race resumed and Gaulding fired off as expected. Gaulding worked his way up to as high as the sixth position in the opening 40 laps. Two more cautions waved on lap 52 and lap 61, slowing the pace down. During the second caution, it seemed like something was a miss on the 08 car. Gaulding had just started dropping through the field and something wasn’t right. At the conclusion of the first stage Gaulding had dropped all the way back to the 18th position.
The team attempted to diagnose Gaulding’s issue during the stage break; however, they could not find the cause. The entire second stage went caution free, as Christopher Bell completely dominated the stage. After 150 laps Gaulding was in the 19th position and two laps down to the leader. The final stage got underway and the goal of the 08 team was to simply finish the race and run as competitively as possible with their undiagnosed troubles. Christopher Bell continued to dominate the race. The final stage went the distance without any yellow flags. At the conclusion of 250 laps, Gaulding managed to still bring home a 22nd place finish. The result was only the team’s fourth finish outside of the top twenty for the entire season. With only six races remaining in the 2019 season, Gaulding holds a 15 point advantage over the 51 of Jeremy Clements for the 13th position in the NASCAR Xfinity Series point standings.
“ It was a tough night finishing 22nd after qualifying 9th. Our SS Green Light team will diagnose the problem and will have us ready for the Roval next Saturday! Shout out to Panini for helping us turn some heads today!”
Bobby Dotter Thoughts on the 08 Team:
“It was great to see that no. 08 on top of the board after practice. It’s unfortunate our finish did not reflect what kind of speed we had; however, it is very encouraging to see that we can have speed competitive to the leaders. We’ll be ready for the Roval!”