CONCORD, NC (May 7, 2012) Following a breakout performance last weekend at Hickory, Trey Gibson showed that his win was no fluke as he powered his No. 2 Toyota Camry to the front of the field to finish second Saturday night.
Mackena Bell and Gibson both drew early qualifying spots (2nd and 3rd, respectively) and posted very respectable qualifying times. However, after Bell’s qualifying run, the track cooled and pushed both drivers back to the 11th and 12th position in the 17 car NASCAR Whelen All-American starting field.
It was obvious early on that both Rev Racing drivers had good cars, as Bell drove her No. 4 Toyota Racing Development Camry to 7th and Gibson to 9th position by Lap 15. Following a few cautions, Bell held on to her spot and Gibson began to surge forward, finding his place in fifth as a caution flag was thrown on Lap 35.
On the restart at Lap 38, Jeremy Sorel (driver of the #77 car) appeared to have missed a shift, causing Bell to check up and attempt to pass him on the outside. She was then squeezed into the outside wall of Turn one and had the toe knocked out on her car, giving her significant handling issues for the remainder of the race.
Gibson was able to escape the aftermath of the restart and held tight to his position for a few laps, and then decided he wanted more. Coming down the backstretch on Lap 47, Gibson had his sights fixed on that second spot and drove hard into Turn three. Gibson’s Toyota stuck on the bottom of the track and he proceeded to drive off with the second position, chasing the leader down for a chance at back-to-back wins. The laps ticked away though and Gibson crossed the stripe in second place, while Bell held on to her damaged ride and finished 13th.
“We had an excellent ride and I was feeling pretty good about the race, but I just can’t catch a break here it seems,” said Bell after the race.
Gibson was very excited after this third podium finish in the last three events at Hickory.
“The car felt better in qualifying than where we started,” said Gibson. “But when they dropped the green flag I knew I had to go hard for 50 laps to get up to the front, and still try to save my right rear tire some in case we had a late caution and I needed it. “
“We were just being patient and marching our way thru the field, “ Gibson added. “After we got up to fifth and had a caution with 12 to go I knew I had a car to win but came up a little short. I’m just really grateful for this opportunity the good Lord, NASCAR, Toyota, Goodyear, Max Siegel and all of our new partners this year have given me. It’s making a difference.”
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