PHOTO: Vince Quenneville, Jr., celebrates his NASCAR Bond Auto Parts Modified victory in victory lane with NASCAR’s Kevin Nevalainen, NASCAR Senior Manager, Weekly Racing Operations. (T.J. Ingerson/VMM photo)

–by T.J. Ingerson

WEST HAVEN — Vince Quenneville, Jr., is not an unfamiliar visitor to Devil’s Bowl victory lane. The Brandon native had scored multiple wins on the dirt surface prior to 2010, and even visited the winners circle on the asphalt in 2010. But Quenneville moved away from Devil’s Bowl after rule changes made his car ineligible to compete.

But Quenneville returned to Devil’s Bowl on Sunday in NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Bond Auto Parts Modified competition. And he made his return a special one.

Quenneville started sixth in the 18-car 35-lap feature event, but it was all Ron Proctor early on. The defending Vermont state champion of Charlton, N.Y., took the lead from polesitter Hunter Bates on lap 8 and seemed to be in cruise control. Procotr had Quenneville on his outside on a lap 28 restart, and pulled away easily.

But a caution one lap later changed everything. Proctor’s car had tightened up, and on the restart, Quenneville got the advantage. The familiar No. 78 worked past Proctor’s No. 27 to take the lead and cruised to the opening day victory.

“I didn’t know if I was going to do it. Ron was really good,” Quenneville said. “Those yellows tightened his car up. But [Ron’s] 602 [engine] was pulling my 358 [engine] down the straightaways. I wouldn’t have been able to beat him if his car didn’t tighten up.”

Proctor settled for second. Jessey Mueller, of Olmstedville, N.Y., charged him his 17th place starting position to finish third. Mueller had trouble in post-qualifying technical inspection that negated a potential top-ten starting position, but was able to rally. Veteran driver Leon Gonyo, of Chazy, N.Y., finished fourth while rookie modified driver Joey Roberts, of Georgia, finished fifth.

Alex Bell, Don Scarborough, Bates, Jamie Proctor, and rookie Andy Smith completed the unofficial top ten.

Airborne Speedway regular Robert Gordon scored his first career Devil’s Bowl win in the 25-lap Renegade feature. Gordon, of Milton, never surrendered the lead after taking it from polesitter Bill Duprey on lap five. Fairfax’s Lance Rabtoy finished second while Ryan Keith, of Pittsford, was third. Frank Monroe and Jeremy Jones completed the top five.

Rookie Josh Masterson picked up career win number one in the 20-lap Bomber feature. Masterson, of Bristol, started on the pole and went wire-to-wire. Gabriel, N.Y.’s Harold LaVair finished a close second to Masterson, while Ray Germain, Jr., of Bristol, was third. John McCarron and Dan Collins completed the top five.

Devil’s Bowl Speedway returns to action on Mother’s Day, Sunday May 13, for the Mother’s Day Special event. Start time is set for 1:30pm.

UNOFFICIAL RESULTS — 101.5 “The Fox” Spring Green
Devil’s Bowl Speedway, West Haven
Sunday, May 6, 2012

(# – denotes rookie)

Bond Auto Parts Modifieds (35 laps)
1. Vince Quenneville, Jr., Brandon
2. Ron Proctor, Charlton, N.Y.
3. Jessey Mueller, Olmstedville, N.Y.
4. Leon Gonyo, Chazy, N.Y.
5. # Joey Roberts, Georgia
6. Alex Bell, Cambridge, N.Y.
7. Don Scarborough, Brandon
8. Hunter Bates, Middlebury
9. Jamie Proctor, Schuylerville, N.Y.
10. # Andy Smith, South Glens Falls, N.Y.

Renegades (25 laps)
1. Robert Gordon, Milton
2. Lance Rabtoy, Fairfax
3. Ryan Keith, Pittsford
4. Frank Monroe, Granville, N.Y.
5. Jeremy Jones, Leicester

Bombers (20 laps)
1. # Josh Masterson, Bristol
2. Harold LaVair, Gabriels, N.Y.
3. Ray Germain, Jr., Bristol
4. John McCarron, Rennselaer, N.Y.
5. Dan Collins, Rennselaer, N.Y.