(Portsmouth, NH – June 30, 2002) On Saturday night June 29th, Carey Heath and the Aubuchon Hardware #12 Team qualified 19th in a field of 26 cars for the Gernatt Asphalt 150 NASCAR Busch North Series race at Holland Speedway in Holland, NY.
After the cars were lined up on the track for the pre-race ceremonies, the fans were invited out on to the track for an autograph session. It looked like half the big crowd flowed out on the track for autographs and pictures. It took about 20 minutes, but it was a great way for the Western New York fans to meet and talk to all the BNS drivers that they only see once a year.
Carey started slowly. At the fifty-lap mark, she had moved up to 16th from her 19th place starting spot. The car was a little loose but Carey said it was getting better the longer she ran. A rash of cautions in the middle of the race slowed the pace, but Carey avoided all the wrecks and was moving forward. By lap 82, she had moved to 15th, and the car was starting to come around as the track cooled in the evening air.
At lap 103, Carey moved to 12th, and at lap 125 she was up to ninth. Over the remaining 23 laps she moved up to seventh but fell back to ninth as Greg Schaefer in the #99 and Mike Johnson in the #96 worked their way back through the field after making pit stops under yellow.
Carey brought the Aubuchon Hardware #12 Chevrolet Monte Carlo home on the lead lap in ninth for her first top ten in the Busch North Series. After the race, Carey said she was pleased with the ninth place finish after the 15th at Stafford the week before because the team is going in the right direction, and she hopes to continue building on this success at Waterford Speedbowl, Waterford, CT on Saturday night July 6th.
After the race, the fans poured into the pits and Carey was signing autographs for over an hour as the haulers were starting to pull out.