BARRE — Thunder Road Int’l Speedbowl has been sold to former track champion Cris Michaud and businessman Patrick Malone. first reported the story late Tuesday afternoon.

The finalized deal comes just days before the start of the 2017 racing season at Thunder Road, which is set to begin on Sunday, April 30.

The track has been under the ownership of Ken Squier and Tom Curley since 1981. Squier founded the track and began racing events there in 1960 before selling it to Tommy Kalomiris in the late 1970s. After many years of disrepair — including being closed for the 1981 season — Squier and Curley re-acquired the track and have held ownership of it until Tuesday.

Both Curley and Squier have publicly stated in recent years their desire to sell the track that would ensure the future of the quarter-mile oval.

Michaud competed in Thunder Road’s top Late Model division for nearly 20 years and helped begin the legendary “spec” motor program in the late 1990s. He earned three division championships in 2001, 2004, and 2005, and won the famed Milk Bowl in 2004. Michaud hung up his driving helmet following the 2013 season and began working as a race day official for the American-Canadian Tour and Thunder Road, transitioning into the race director for the 2015 and 2016 seasons. He left that position in August of 2016.

Malone owns and operates Malone Properties, a real estate leasing and development company in Montpelier. He has long supported short track racing as a primary sponsor for Eric Chase and last season’s ACT Late Model Tour champion Nick Sweet.

VMM will have more on the sale of Thunder Road soon.

(Alan Ward photo)