–by T.J. Ingerson (@TJIngerson)
BARRE – The new pavement had little effect on Flying Tiger driver Brendan Moodie.
The veteran pilot and former Lenny’s Shoe & Apparel Flying Tiger champion came out on top of a side-by-side battle with Mike Martin and then held off returning driver Dwayne Lanphear to win the 40-lap Flying Tiger event on Sunday afternoon at Thunder Road.
Moodie, of Wolcott, started eighth and used a lap 15 restart to his advantage as he was able to pull even with Martin. The two would battle side-by-side until a lap 24 caution flag saw the duo swapped lanes and allowed Moodie to pull away.
As Moodie grabbed the lead, former Milk Bowl champion Dwayne Lanphear moved his way to Moodie’s rear bumper, but was unable to find a way around as Moodie claimed his 18th career Tiger Sportsman victory.
“This is great,” Moodie said in victory lane. “I think this is the first win that I ever got where I haven’t done donuts. But I didn’t want to piss (track owners) Cris (Michaud) and Pat (Malone) off first thing thing of the year.”
That win put Moodie in sole possession of first on the all-time Flying Tiger wins list, breaking the tie that he held with Joey Laquerre.
Morrisville’s Lanphear was able to slice his way through the field from a 13th place starting spot to finish second.
“This is where I started 32 years ago,” Lanphear said. “I’m almost 53 years old and I can still run with them.
“When you can bump Brendan Moodie in the ass, you’re doing pretty good.”
Joel Hodgdon of Craftsbury third. Rookie pilot Jaden Perry of Hardwick came home in the fourth spot with Tiger veteran Joe Steffen of Grand Isle fifth.
Martin fell back to sixth after the race’s final restart with former champion Jason Woodard seventh. Reigning Street Stock champion and Tiger rookie Jamon Perry, Cameron Ouellette, and rookie Tyler Austin completed the top-ten finishers.
Reilly Lanphear picked up career win number one in the 25-lap Allen Lumber Street Stock feature.
The Duxbury youngster took advantage of her sister’s misfortunes prior to the initial start and was able to start second instead of third. When the green dropped, Lanphear moved into the lead.
Lanphear then held off a late race charge from Michael Gay to claim the win.
In victory lane, Lanphear choked up when she thanked late Thunder Road track owner Tom Curley for allowing her to begin racing at the age of 15.
Gay, of South Burlington, posted a career-best runner-up finish with sophomore campaigner Kelsea Woodard of Waterbury Center third. Former champion Gary Mullen and veteran Al Maynard completed the top-five finishers with Brandon Lanphear, Matthew Smith, Bunker Hodgdon, rookie Logan Powers, and Thomas Merchants sixth through tenth.
Thunder Road continues its 2017 season on Sunday, June 4 with the rescheduled Harvest Equipment event. Post time is set for 3:00pm.
UNOFFICIAL RESULTS – Mekkelsen RV Memorial Day Classic
Thunder Road Speedbowl, Barre, Vt.
Sunday, May 28, 2017
(# — denotes rookie)
Lenny’s Shoe & Apparel Flying Tigers (40 laps)
1. Brendan Moodie, Wolcott
2. Dwayne Lanphear, Morrisville
3. Joel Hodgdon, Craftsbury
4. # Jaden Perry, Hardwick
5. Joe Steffen, Grand Isle
6. Mike Martin, Craftsbury
7. Jason Woodard, Waterbury Center
8. # Jamon Perry, Hardwick
9. Cameron Ouellette, Barre
10. # Tyler Austin, East Calais
Allen Lumber Street Stocks (25 laps)
1. Reilly Lanphear, Duxbury
2. Michael Gay, South Burlington
3. Kelsea Woodard, Waterbury Center
4. Gary Mullen, Tunbridge
5. Al Maynard, Fairfax
6. Brandon Lanphear, Morrisville
7. Matthew Smith, Essex Junction
8. Bunker Hodgdon, East Hardwick
9. # Logan Powers, Middlesex
10. Thomas Merchant, Eden Mills
1 – Brendan Moodie celebrates his record breaking 18th career Flying Tiger win on Sunday at Thunder Road. (Alan Ward photo)
2 – Reilly Lanphear earned her first career Street Stock win on Sunday at Thunder Road. (Alan Ward photo)