Woodard claims second career Tiger Sportsman win; Hennequin earns 11th Street Stock victory
–by T.J. Ingerson (@TJIngerson)
BARRE – Shawn Fleury was thankful to get another chance on Thursday night at Thunder Road.
The Middlesex driver used a restart with just four laps remaining to get by leader Christopher Pelkey to claim the win in the 50-lap ACT Late Model feature. The race winning pass came just three laps following another restart in which he was unable to move past Pelkey.
“When (Pelkey) got by me, I didn’t think I was going to make it back,” Fleury said in victory lane about the lap 43 restart. “Luckily the caution came out and it gave me another shot.”
Fleury would use an excellent restart that allowed him to power past Pelkey and grab the lead on lap 47. From there, he quickly cleared the now second place car, but that allowed the opportunity for two-time champion Nick Sweet to pull to Fleury’s rear bumper.
“I was able to clear (Pelkey),” Fleury said, “but (I was) watching (Sweet) coming in the rear view.”
Sweet, of Barre, was able to get by Pelkey to finish second and attempted a last lap pass on Fleury, but Fleury was able to power away to the checkered flag.
Sweet settled for second while hometown driver Pelkey posted his career best finish of third. Point leader Scott Dragon of Milton kept second place point driver Sweet close with a fourth place finish with Matt White of Northfield fifth.
Marcel J. Gravel, Phil Scott, Jason Corliss, John Donahue, and Eric Badore finished sixth through tenth, respectively.
Unofficially, Dragon saw his point lead shrink from 35 point down to 20 points with two races remaining after Sweet’s heat race and semi-feature finishes.
Jason Woodard of Waterbury Center posted the lowest cumulative score in the three-segment Bond Auto Tiger Sportsman feature to claim the overall win.
The win for Woodard was the third of his career.
Woodard entered the final segment tied with Graniteville’s Stephen Donahue and the two would tangle midway through the final 20-lap run. Woodard would sneak ahead after the contact and claim the overall win.
“It was just racing hard,” Woodard said of the contact in victory lane. “I’ve been on the other end of the stick before.”
Woodard posted finishes of third, fifth, and fifth, in the three segments.
Donahue finished second overall and took the high road with is victory lane comments.
“It’s just racing,” Donahue said. “I got second last week and we had a really good car, but luck just didn’t fall our way.”
Final segment victor Mark Barnier of Essex Junction third. Cameron Ouellette of Barre and Mike Martin of Craftsbury completed the top-five overall finishers.
Segment one winner Tommy Smith, Joe Steffen, defending champion Brendan Moodie, Mike Billado, and segment two victor Brian Delphia completed the top-ten overall finishers.
Will Hennequin grabbed career win number 11 in the 25-lap Allen Lumber Street Stock feature.
The Morrisville driver took the lead following a lap 19 restart from rookie Cooper Bouchard, who had led from the first lap of the event.
Bouchard, of Hinesburg, finished second with Peyton Lanphear of Duxbury third. Jaden Perry of Hardwick came home in fourth after a wild last lap with Kyle Gravel fifth. Rookie Kelsea Woodard, Greg Collette, Jamon Perry, Tom Campbell, and Gary Mullen completed the top-ten finishers.
Thunder Road returns to racing action for the final Thursday night race of the season on August 25 with Jet Service Envelope/Accura Printing night, along with the always popular Run-What-U-Brung spectator racing event. Post time is set for 7:00pm.
UNOFFICIAL RESULTS – US Army Recruiting Night
Thunder Road Speedbowl, Barre, Vt.
Thursday, August 18, 2016
(# — denotes rookie)
ACT Late Models (50 laps)
1. Shawn Fleury, Middlesex
2. Nick Sweet, Barre
3. # Chris Pelkey, South Barre
4. Scott Dragon, Milton
5. Matt White, Northfield
6. # Marcel J. Gravel, Wolcott
7. Phil Scott, Middlsex
8. Jason Corliss, Barre
9. John Donahue, Graniteville
10. Eric Badore, Milton
Bond Auto Tiger Sportsman (3 x 20 laps)
1. Jason Woodard, Waterbury Center – 13 pts
2. Stephen Donahue, Graniteville – 14 pts
3. Mark Barnier, Essex Junction – 15 pts
4. Cameron Ouellette, Barre – 17 pts
5. Mike Martin, Craftsbury – 17 pts
6. Tommy Smith, Williamstown – 20 pts
7. Joe Steffen, Grand Isle – 21 pts
8. Brendan Moodie, Wolcott – 22 pts
9. Mike Billado, Essex – 22 pts
10. Brian Delphia, Duxbury – 27 pts
Allen Lumber Street Stocks (25 laps)
1. Will Hennequin, Morrisville
2. # Cooper Bouchard, Hinesburg
3. # Peyton Lanphear, Duxbury
4. Jaden Perry, Hardwick
5. Kyle Gravel, Wolcott
6. # Kelsea Woodard, Waterbury Center
7. Greg Collette, Milton
8. Jamon Perry, Hardwick
9. Tom Campbell, Middlesex
10. Gary Mullen, Tunbridge
PHOTO: Shawn Fleury celebrates his Thunder Road Late Model win on Thursday night after he used a late race restart to claim the lead and the win. (T.J. Ingerson/VMM photo)