Defending Vermont state champion leads by 37 points

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

WEST HAVEN — Vince Quenneville Jr. and Bobby Hackel are set to decide the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Vermont state championship this weekend at Devil’s Bowl Speedway Dirt Track.

Quenneville leads Hackel by 37 points headed into the final point counting week for NASCAR. They are both slated to compete in the 50-lap Mert “Socks” Hulbert Tribute Sportsman Modified event on Sunday night.

For Hackel to give himself an opportunity, the equation is simple — win. Hackel needs to win to give himself any chance.

For Quenneville, the math is a bit harder.

Under the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series point structure, a driver’s top 18 races are counted toward the State and National championship standings. Hackel sits at just 14 races, while Quenneville has run 28 times. Thus, anything Hackel does on Sunday will count toward his season total, while Quenneville can only marginally add to his tally.

Quenneville has already dropped his ten lowest point counting races off of his total. Unofficially, his next lowest score is 20 points, which would make force Quenneville to finish sixth or better to secure the championship without Hackel’s involvement.

Hackel needs 16 or more Sportsman Modified cars in Sunday’s 50-lap event to compete to have a chance. The good news for Hackel — Devil’s Bowl dirt track has had more than the full field requirement of 18 cars in every event this season.

Where Hackel starts will also be an important factor. If Hackel starts outside of the top-ten, he will have the opportunity at two additional bonus points should he win. The NASCAR Whelen All-American Series point structure gives drivers 3 bonus points for a win, 5 bonus points should that win come from a tenth or worse starting spot.

All six of Hackel’s dirt track wins this season have come from tenth or worse.

Unofficially, Hackel holds the tiebreaker with his six wins to Quenneville’s five — a number that can only go up for Hackel as a win is his only opportunity.

Sunday’s Mert “Socks” Hulbert Tribute 50-lap event will go green at 5:00pm with qualifying. The NASCAR-sanctioned Renegades and Mini Stocks will be in attendance, as well as the Catamount Mini Sprint Club and Mohawk Valley Vintage Modifieds.

PHOTO: Vince Quenneville Jr. (78) leads Bobby Hackel (97) into the final point counting weekend for the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series. (T.J. Ingerson/VMM photos)