By Rich Vleck
The Broderick Racing Team came into this past weekend with high hopes for another win on what has already been an impressive 2010 season. When the dust settled Sunday Night, though, they could only take solace in making the best of bad breaks.
Saturday Night, the team visited the Brockville Ontario Speedway for the second time this season, a track where Bubba has never finished outside of the top-10. Another heat race start back in the pack did not phase the 20-year-old as he moved into a redraw spot and would pull the fourth starting spot for the A-Main.
“I was really exciting heading into the feature,” reflected Bubba. “It was a great draw for me, because I was planning to run the top anyways and I just assumed Shawn Donath, who was starting in front of me, would make the outside the line to go.”
When the race began, polesitter Shayne Ely jumped out in front, with Donath in second. Bubba was right behind them in third.
“Shayne definitely hit the setup, he was rolling the bottom and I tried it a few times and knew I had to be on the top. My car was not good on short runs and every time I would reel them in the caution would come out.”
Broderick was riding midway though the event when he came up on a lapped car and had to move his line up to the extreme outside to pass him. As the leaders worked through turns three and four, the right rear on the No. 5 dipped over the banking and sent Bubba in a spin right towards the turn four wall. The Eagle Chassis would make hard contact with an implement tire, and tip over the car.
“If I could have run the bottom, I would have used it to get around him. The lapped car would push high, and then cut down low, and I figured he would do it again but he stayed on the top and I had to either go in his rear bumper or slam on the breaks, which spun me around into the wall.”
Thankfully for Bubba, the damage was minimal and he would be able to finish the event, placing 13th. It was not the result he was hoping for, but knew things could have been even worse.
“I’m amazed I didn’t flip. I figured the rear end was going to be shot, but all it ended up being were a few small problems. The race car wasn’t junked and I knew that the car was running solid before that one mistake.”
The next day, the team travelled about an hour up the road to Cornwall Motor Speedway, where Bubba took his most spectacular flip in his sprint car career a year earlier.
Broderick drew another poor starting spot in his heat, this time in a qualifier filled with top competitors. The Brookfield, CT resident could not do much with his spot and would have to work from the back in the feature.
“That was probably the weakest the car has been this year. Bryan Howland and I shared a laugh after the race about how we were battling each other in the back. It was actually pretty embarrassing. We found a few things wrong with the setup of the car before the A-Main and figured we could improve and bounce back.”
Bubba did not waste much time moving forward, driving from 17th to ninth place in the first six laps. With plenty of racing left to be completed, it seemed as though nothing could stop him.
“The car was amazing, it was unbelievably fast. I told the guys in the pits before the race that my goal was to get in the top-10 and once I was there by lap five, I wasn’t ready to slow down.”
On a lap seven restart, though, his nose wing would fold up after contact with Shayne Ely and hinder the performance on the No. 5 and caused him to slide out of the top-10.
On lap 12, while sliding the top wing forward to aid the ill-handling machine, two cars came together battling for third place and would block the track entering turn one. Broderick did what he could to avoid contact, but that was nearly impossible.
“I was working on getting back by Jared Zimbardi, but his wing was blocking almost all of my vision, so when he slammed on the brakes I didn’t have anywhere to escape. I knew I would hit Zimbardi, I just tried to make as minimal of contact as possible.
After changing a flat right rear tire in the work area, Broderick would return with a bent front axle, a bent radius rod and a bent Jacob’s Ladder and finish in ninth. For a second straight night, it was not the finish that the team was looking for, but their perseverance was noteworthy.
“The crew worked really hard to get me back out there in under two minutes. It was a weekend that I can’t be happy about, but I know we didn’t lose as much ground as we could have.”
The focus now shifts from a ¼-mile to the 5/8-mile Rolling Wheels Raceway, where Broderick will help represent the ASCS Patriots in the Fast Track Summer Shootout, which also features competitors from the United Racing Company and Empire Super Sprints.
“I love the track; it was the first one I ever ran back in 2007 when I was running one of Chuck Hebing’s cars. It has been have a few years since anyone has run there and I have a feeling were going to do really well.”
Sunday Night, Bubba will hit Lebanon Valley Speedway on the way to compete in the World of Outlaws event. Even though he will be giving up plenty of horsepower on the 410s, he still enjoys the element of speed the tight 5/8-mile presents.
“I really enjoy speed and no place gives you it like the Valley. It is only a hour and a half from my home, so why not stop there?”
Broderick Racing is supported by Northeast Carpet, Brownie’s Towing, Pink Money Water, Eagle Motorsports, Mike Emhof Motorsports, Fyne Line Construction, Campbell’s Painting, Jim’s Welding Supply.
For more information, be sure to visit www.BroderickRacing.com.