–by T.J. Ingerson (@TJIngerson)
VMM Editor

BRADFORD, Vt. – Dan Douville wasn’t going to come off the bottom on Saturday night at Bear Ridge Speedway and it paid off in a big way.

The Bridgewater, N.H. driver erased new car blues and earned a dominating win in the 25-lap Sprint Cars of New England feature event.

Douville driver started in the third spot and moved into the second spot shortly after a lap three restart. Despite the early caution, leader Jake Williams had opened up a comfortable lead, but Douville began to track the leader down.

The defending champion had erased Williams’ lead by the tenth lap and moved to the inside of the lead car in turn two. Douville wouldn’t be stopped and would take the lead for keeps as the race completed the 11th lap.

The win for Douville was his first in a new car that has given the team some struggles this season.

“It’s huge. We have been struggling and it’s no fault but my own,” Douville said. “We had tried a couple of different things and thought that it would act like the old car, but it didn’t. We had to adjust and we’ve been adjusting for the past couple of weeks.

“We finally found something out at Devil’s Bowl (Speedway). We’re pretty happy.”

For Douville, the first win of the season meant a lot, especially for it to come during the series’ Triple Crown event.

“I think it’s pretty big,” Douville said. “We finally get the monkey off our back. You always want to get that first one. The Triple Crown is always good and we’ve got a lot of money in the pot this year.

“I’ve got a long way to go to catch (point leader) Chris (Donnelly) in the point standings. He’s a good runner and he runs really well, so he’s tough to beat.”

Douville had a plan entering Bear Ridge after he had a win ripped from his grasp by Donnelly at Devil’s Bowl two weeks ago.

“I was a little disappointed in myself (at Devil’s Bowl) and I told myself tonight that I was not coming off the bottom,” Douville said. “I didn’t and it fortunately worked out for us tonight.”

Douville also netted the win in the bonus money Dash 4 Cash race.

Donnelly, of Piermont, N.H., finished second from a fourth place starting spot while Kevin Chaffee of Bradford, Vt. raced his way to a third place finish. Williams, of Center Tuftonboro, N.H., held on to finish fourth while Will Hull of Plainfield, Vt. completed the top-five finishers.

Luke Greenwood made the hard charge through the field to finish sixth after starting in 18th. Rookie polesitter Matt Hoyt finished seventh with fellow freshman drivers Richie Simmons and Mike Chaffee eighth and ninth, respectively. Tyler Austin finished tenth.

The Sprint Cars of New England will continue their Triple Crown event on Sunday, July 3 at the Dirt Track at Devil’s Bowl Speedway at 7:00pm. Series officials announced that Friday night’s rained out event at Legion Speedway will now take place on Friday, August 5 and will complete the Triple Crown Event.

VMM will have more from Bear Ridge Speedway soon.

UNOFFICIAL RESULTS – O’Reilly Auto Parts 25
Sprint Cars of New England – Bear Ridge Speedway, Bradford, Vt.
Saturday, July 2, 2016

(# — denotes rookie)

1. (3) Dan Douville, Bridgewater, N.H.
2. (4) Chris Donnelly, Piermont, N.H.
3. (5) Kevin Chaffee, Bradford, Vt.
4. (2) Jake Williams, Center Tuftonboro, N.H.
5. (6) Will Hull, Plainfield, Vt.
6. (18) Luke Greenwood, Hudson, N.H.
7. (1) # Matt Hoyt, Campton, N.H.
8. (14) # Richie Simmons, Bradford, Vt.
9. (8) # Mike Chaffee, East Corinth, Vt.
10. (19) Tyler Austin, West Fairlee, Vt.
11. (20) # Ryan Avery, Campton, N.H.
12. (15) # Chad Turck, Pittsfield, N.H.
13. (9) Lacey Hanson, Orwell, Vt.
14. (10) Patrick Smith, East Andover, N.H.
15. (13) Dennis McLeod, Concord, N.H.
16. (21) Adam Lyman, Martinsburg, W. Va.
17. (12) Christine Boesch, Concord, N.H.
18. (17) Steve Hutchinson, Goffstown, N.H.
19. (11) Lauren Boisvert, Danbury, N.H.
20. (16) Chris Clark, Vershire, Vt.
21. (7) Clay Dow, Hampstead, N.H.

PHOTO: Dan Douville celebrates his first Sprint Cars of New England win of the season on Saturday night at Bear Ridge Speedway. (T.J. Ingerson/VMM photo)