PHOTO: Brian Hoar celebrates with his crew after winning the ACT All-Star Late Model Challenge at New Hampshire Motor Speedway (T.J. Ingerson/VMM photo)

–by T.J. Ingerson

LOUDON, N.H. — It appeared Eddie MacDonald was on his way to take the inaugural ACT All-Star Late Model Challenge at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway. MacDonald, of Rowley, Mass., charged his way through the field from his 36th starting position after winning the first segment, and worked his way into the top 10 by lap 16. MacDonald then took the lead on lap 24 from then race leader John Donahue, and with Brian Hoar trailing him in second, MacDonald appeared to be heading to victory.

That is, until his car lost power before a lap 36 restart.

After Donald Theetge spun around in turn 2, the field was crossing over for their double file restart when MacDonald’s car dropped off the pace and came to a stop in the middle of turns one and two, with a reported ignition box failure.

That gave the lead to Hoar, who never surrendered the lead and went on to win segment two. The win, combined with his second place finish in the first segment, gave Hoar the overall victory in the two segment, 75-lap All-Star Late Model Challenge with an overall score of “3.”

“We had a hot rod,” said Hoar, of Williston, Vt. “Just incredible. I think Eddie [MacDonald] and I were kind of the class of the field all day. It’s too bad what happened, I was looking forward to a good restart on his outside. It was just an incredible run.”

After finishing second in the first segment, an inversion of the top 36 finishers of that segment was held, setting up Hoar for an incredible run to the front.

“I had a lot of anxiety starting in 35th, but this track just races out super with these cars,” Hoar explained. “It’s a lot of fun to run three and four wide. I have to hand it to the entire field of cars. I’m running up on the outside of people three and four wide coming out of turn four and I’m saying ‘I hope they give me a lane.’ Everyone really did a great job. When someone got the position, they respected that and allowed us to run three and four wide.”

Chasing Hoar down at the end of the second segment was Austin Theriault. Theriault, of Fort Kent, Me., finished fifth in segment one and was reeling in Hoar in the closing laps, settling for a second place finish in the second segment after starting 32nd, and ending up finishing second overall with a score of “7.”

“What an incredible day,” Theriault said. “We were okay in the first segment, but we were lucky to start in the front. It’s all about track position here. But, we did pass some cars in the second segment. We made the car a lot better. But I’m kind of surprised. We’ll take it. I don’t know how hard Brian was pushing it at the end, but we were catching him.”

Patrick Laperle raced his way to finish fourth in the second segment after a disappointing 12th place finish in segment one. Laperle, of St-Denis, Que., overall total of “16” placed him third in the final finishing order, and securing the tiebreaker with Brad Leighton. Leighton, of Center Harbor, N.H., finished sixth in the second segment, but Laperle’s better finish in the second segment handed him the tiebreaker. 68-year old Joey Laquerre, of East Montpelier, Vt., finished fifth with an overall score of “17.”

Wayne Helliwell, Jr., Ricky Rolfe, Tom Carey, Jr., John Donahue, and rookie Pete Yetman completed the unofficial top ten overall finishers.

Eddie MacDonald was relegated to 18th overall after finishing 38th in the final segment.

“It was disappointing to not be able to challenge Brian [Hoar] at the end,” said MacDonald. “I always welcome a challenge. I thought we could have held him off. I was not happy when he got through the field quicker than me, but we made some moves and was able to get through traffic quicker than him there at the end. I was really looking forward to battling with him.”

The American-Canadian Tour travels to the Oxford Plains Speedway on Saturday, August 20, for the ACT 150, which was rained out from June 25th.

UNOFFICIAL RESULTS — ACT All-Star Late Model Challenge
American-Canadian Tour — New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Loudon, N.H.
Saturday, August 13, 2011

Pos.-(Start)-Driver-Hometown-Overall Score
(# – denotes rookie)

1. (6) Brian Hoar, Williston, Vt. — 3
2. (4) Austin Theriault , Fort Kent, Me. — 7
3. (29) Patrick Laperle ,St-Denis, Que. — 16
4. (24) Brad Leighton, Center Harbor, N.H. — 16
5. (2) Joey Laquerre, East Montpelier, Vt. — 17
6. (3) Wayne Helliwell, Jr., Dover, N.H. — 21
7. (14) Ricky Rolfe, Albany Township, Me. — 23
8. (8) Tom Carey, Jr., New Salem, Mass. — 24
9. (35) John Donahue, Graniteville, Vt. — 26
10. (32) # Pete Yetman, Peru, Mass. — 27
11. (16) David Michaud, Ste-Annes, Que. — 28
12. (15) Joey Polewarczyk, Jr., Hudson, N.H. — 30
13. (7) Alex Labbe, St-Albert, Que. — 30
14. (31) Nick Sweet, Barre, Vt. — 35
15. (27) Ray Parent, Tiverton, R.I. — 35
16. (30) Mike Stefanik, Coventry, R.I. — 36
17. (22) Shawn Martin, Turner, Me. — 38
18. (1) Eddie MacDonald, Rowley, Mass. — 39
19. (12) Mike Bruno, Castleton, Vt. — 41
20. (5) Donald Theetge, Boischatel, Que. — 41
21. (13) Brad Babb, Windham, Me. — 43
22. (25) Scott Payea, Milton, Vt. — 45
23. (18) Karl Allard, St-Felicien, Que. — 45
24. (19) Jeffrey Labrecque, Rochester, N.H. — 46
25. (28) Jamie Aube, North Ferrisburgh, Vt. — 48
26. (20) Randy Potter, Groveton, N.H. — 48
27. (39) # Dave Farrington, Jr., Jay, Me. — 50
28. (21) # Ben Ashline, Pittston, Me. — 52
29. (11) Jean-Francois Dery, Quebec, Que. — 54
30. (17) Aaron Fellows, Croydon, N.H. — 55
31. (23) Jacob McGrath, North Claredon, Vt. — 55
32. (9) Mark Lamberton, Mooers Forks, N.Y. — 57
33. (38) Glen Luce, Turner, Me. — 60
34. (33) Jamie Fisher, Shelburne, Vt. — 63
35. (26) Dany Trepanier, St-Edouard, Que. — 69
36. (41) Patrick Hamel, St-Croix, Que. — 70
37. (43) Brent Dragon, Milton, Vt. — 70
38. (40) Mike Kenison, Lancaster, N.H. — 71
39. (34) Justin Holtom, Dunrobin, Ont. — 73
40. (37) Scott Luce, Strong, Me. — 75
41. (44) # Rowland Robinson, Jr., Birch Harbor, Me. — 79
42. (40) Dennis Spencer, Jr., Oxford, Me. — 79
43. (42) Marc-Andre Cliche, Vallee-Jonction, Que. — 83
44. (10) Donnie Lashua, Canaan, N.H. — DNF