We Saw More Great Racing Entertainment on Thursday Aug 4th!
We got our third race-night of the season in at Laird International Raceway during the evening of Thursday August 4th, after races were cancelled the week before due to rain and wet grounds. Unlike the week before the weather gods were cooperative and we couldn’t have asked for better weather – it was a perfect night for racing entertainment. For the third race-night we also saw a great sized crowd and a good car count. Thanks to fans and drivers for outstanding support of your local stock car track!
Racing got started about 15 minutes late due to some delays in our qualifying session. Annette Bouchard joined announcer Greg Brazeau on the front stretch to sing the American and Canadian national anthems, then Braz ran through the starting lineup of Factory Stocks that were on the front stretch for their first heat. In the announcers booth we also enjoyed hearing visiting announcer Oval Reving from Onaway once again
We started the evening with a single heat in the Service Rental Factory Stock and NAPA Auto Parts Modified Division, and two heats in the Super Late Model and Atomic Blonde Factory Four divisions.
Service Rental Factory Stock Division
Eight cars were out for qualifying with fast qualifier in the division being Brad Bibeau with a time of 16.150 seconds around the 1/3 mile D shaped oval. During qualifying #23 Ken Fewchuk slid up off corner 2 into the weeds, requiring the tow truck to pull him out, and causing a delay during qualifying.
After opening ceremonies, first out for the night was the Service Rental Factory Stocks for their single heat of the evening. In the 10 lap Factory Stock heat, the eight qualifiers were joined by three additional cars to bring the car count for the race to eleven. Before a lap was complete, #09 of Cory Carbone left the track. Rob Wagner #88, and Jamie Fox #51 started at the front, and were both passed by the Bibeau brothers #08 Dan, and #26 Brad, before the first lap was complete.
With 7 of 10 laps complete, caution flew when rookie driver Owen Brown in the great looking red #88 got loose through corner 4. Wagner left early with car problems during the caution. The race resumed with Dan in the lead, and Brad right behind for the remaining laps. #01 Jerry Ross came across the line 3rd, #100R Ron Raynor 4th – this was Raynor’s first time out in this car. Raynor was doing double duty through the evening, also running a Late Model.
Later after intermission we watched a 30 lap Factory Stock feature. All 11 were back out, with Wagner and Fox on the pole. Wagner was able to hold front place for a lap then slid back on lap 2 with #67 Jarritt Varcoe taking the lead. #77 Ed Lapish had left the track on lap 5, and #100 of Ron Raynor also left on lap 8, leaving 9 cars.
Varcoe held the lead through to lap 13 with Brad Bibeau behind. Dan Bibeau and Jamie Fox were running side by side for third for a few laps then Dan got by and worked at closing up the gap to his brother Brad. On lap 13 Varcoe went loose through corner 3 and 4 and brought out the caution. Varcoe restarted at the back.
On the restart Brad had the front position, with Daniel inside and #01 Gerry Ross outside in row 2. Within a couple laps the field had opened up again with Daniel running behind Brad, Ross third a few car lengths back. The race continued with Brad up front and Dan unable to get closer than about 2 car lengths. On lap 23, young Owen Brown spun on the backstretch and went into the guardrail backwards, he was running 5th at the time. The spin wasn’t seen by officials until another lap went by. Brown had a left rear tire down, and some damage to the rear of his car and had to be towed off. During the caution #09 Cory Carbone and #88 Rob Wagner left the track. Leaving 6 cars of the original 11 for a restart. Shortly afterwards #23 Ken Fewchuk also left, leaving 5 cars to run the last few laps. Brad restarted at the front, continued to run a flawless race and took the checkered flag and $1000 to win. Dan Bibeau took 2nd about 10 car lengths back. About another 10 lengths behind him was Ross for 3rd, then Fox for 4th, and Varcoe right behind for 5th.
Super Late Models
We had a good car count in the Super Late Model division for the evening with 10 cars qualifying. Top qualifier was George Wilson in the yellow #88 with a time of 14.571 seconds. Of note was #21K of Kevin Errington qualifying just 2 thousandths behind with a time of 14.573 sec.
All 10 were out for the first 10 lap heat. Before the first lap was complete caution was out as #61 of Dustin Jackson spun going into corner 2. Unsure if there was contact with another car. #50 of Rob Hiiemaa left before the restart. #0 Dan Byrnes started at the pole and held the lead for the first 3 laps until the caution flag flew again. This time it was #71 Jay McCoy that spun on the backstretch before corner 3. Cars restarted but were immediately cautioned down as officials didn’t like the restart or lineup - not sure which.
Byrnes led another lap then caution flew again. This time we saw #90 Jay Palumbo running inside with #21 Jake Irwin outside and the pair came out of corner 4 high on the track. Irwin touched the guardrail and then slid up it well past the flagstand. Irwin left the track and during the caution #3 Shawn Ritchie also left. Seven cars remained for the last 5 laps then #71 Jay McCoy left on lap 7, leaving six. Brynes continued to lead for the win, with #90 Jay Palumbo 2nd, #88 George Wilson 3rd, #61 Dustin Jackson 4th, #21K Kevin Errington 5th, and #100R Ron Raynor 6th.
All 10 were back out for the second heat a bit later on, but before the green flew Irwin left, leaving 9. Caution came out twice. First time on lap 2 when Jay McCoy spun. An infield tire was shoved up onto the track and Wilson picked it up under his car and dragged it to the other end of the track. Errington left during the caution, and Hiiemaa left a lap after the restart. The second caution came out on lap 9 when Byrnes spun on corner 3 on lap 9. At this point the field was down to 5 cars after Jackson left on lap 5, and McCoy on lap 8. Ron Raynor led all laps of the race to win, George Wilson 2nd, Jay Palumbo 3rd, Shawn Ritchie 4th, and Dan Byrnes 5th.
The Super Late Model feature was a 20 lap event. #3 Shawn Ritchie started outside of row 1 beside #100 Ron Raynor. Ritchie took the early lead, but quickly had #90 Jay Palumbo beside him challenging for the lead. Palumbo took the lead by a nose on lap 4 and the pair continued to run side by side for a few laps with Ritchie inside. A few laps later Palumbo opened a gap on Ritchie and the rest of the field. #88 George Wilson, running at the back was seen to be having handling issues with the car going loose a few times. On lap 15 the car got away from the veteran, spinning up corner 4 to bring out the sole caution of the race.
The restart saw Palumbo up front, with Ritchie and #61 Dustin Jackson right behind. Jackson made fairly quick work on Ritchie and then moved up to chase Palumbo down. It was a heart thumper at the end. On the last lap of the race, coming out of corner 3, Jackson’s nose contacted Palumbo’s right rear corner, causing Palumbo to get a bit loose and lose some momentum. Jackson moved up on the outside and was a nose ahead into corner 3. As they came out of corner 4 Palumbo pushed up the track forcing Jackson to slow to avoid a wreck and Palumbo took the checkered flag, with Jackson settling for 2nd. Ritchie pulled up 3rd, about a ¼ lap behind, Kevin Errington 4th, Jake Irwin 5th.
NAPA Auto Parts Modifieds
The NAPA Auto Parts Modifieds ran a single heat, and an extended 30 lap feature during the night. Seven cars were out for qualifying, with #27 Dustin Jackson being fast qualifier with a time of 15.324 seconds.
Nine cars took to the track for a 10 lap heat but #15 Jamie Nedeau left before the green, leaving eight. The race was fast and caution free. Johnny Lawhorn, driving the #84 usually driven by Mark Laakso, started inside second row, but by the end of the first lap had gotten by #21 Josh Maitland and #78 Jason Herrington and went on to lead all laps. #90 Jay Palumbo snagged 2nd, #27 Dustin Jackson 3rd, Maitland 4th, and #01 John Ross 5th.
The nine were back out for the 30 lap Modified feature. This time it was Maitland starting beside Herrington in the front row. The green flew, but within a lap #01 John Ross dropped out, he might have got dinged by #28 Mark Porpealia on corner 2. Caution came out on lap 2 when Maitland inside and Jackson outside made contact in corner 3. Maitland restarted at the back.
On the restart, Jay Palumbo and Dustin Jackson made a quick pass on Herrington on the backstretch, one on the inside, one outside. The two ran side by side for a few laps, with the pair trading top spot, then, on lap 7 Palumbo took the lead and started to open a gap on Jackson. #15 Jamie Nedeau dropped out on lap 6. At the half way point Palumbo’s lead had widened to about 10 car lengths over Jackson and continued to get larger. At the end of the race Palumbo went across the line to take the win, about ¼ lap ahead of Jackson, taking 2nd. Lawhorn 3rd was the only other car on the lead lap at that point. #28 Mark Porpealia took 4th, Maitland 5th, Herrington 6th, and #68 Keith Horner 7th.
Atomic Blonde Factory Fours
Eight Factory Fours were out to qualify early in the evening, with #22 Shanna Harten being fastest with a time of 18.082 seconds. The Factory Fours ran two 8 lap heats and a 20feature through the night.
The first heat went caution free. #12 Anthony Mannarino quickly got past the two front runners to take the lead on lap 1 and was not challenged for the rest of the race. #7 Terrance Devon pulled 2nd, #05 Tyler Praysner 3rd and #22 Shanna Harten 4th.
In their second 8 lapper, caution almost flew on lap 1, when #94 Rob Ralph dinged #05 Tyler Praysner in the left rear, sending Praysner sideways. Somehow Praysner managed to save it and the race continued. With a lap complete, caution flew. They were coming up the front stretch with Lannigan in the middle, Mannarino moving up the outside, and Devon down low. Devon tagged Lannigans left rear quarter which sent Lannigan into a spin entering corner 1. Devon restarted towards the back. Mannarino restarted up front and led the rest of the race for the checkers, with Shanna Harten 2nd, Praysner 3rd, and Lannigan 4th.
The Factory Four feature was a 20 lap, fast, caution free race. Lannigan started up front on the outside, beside the #724 truck of Mike Heinonen. Lannigan took the lead immediately but just before the line on the first lap Praysner got a nose ahead. Praysner made the full pass and led a couple laps but was running high on the track, leaving Mannarino lots of room to make an inside pass to take the lead away on lap 4. By the half way mark, Mannarino had opened a 10 car length lead over Praysner, and more than a ¼ track lead over 3rd place runner Devon. Harten managed to get past Devon to take over 3rd on lap 13, but by that time Mannarino was a half lap ahead of her. At the end of the 20 laps, Mannarino had captured his 3rd win for the night for a hat trick. Praysner pulled up second about a ¼ lap behind, Harten 3rd, about a half lap back, and Devon 4th. The rest of the field was at least a lap down with Lannigan 5th, #21 Daryl Whitmel 6th, #94 Seth Ralph 7th, and Heinonen in the truck 8th.
Lakeway Automotive Enduros
(Corrected Aug 6 - Originally I had written that the winner was Levi Weisflock, when in fact it was #4 Dale Tucker. Tucker was running without a transponder so wasn't in the results from the scoring system.)
The last racers of the night were the Enduro drivers. Seventeen of them took to the track for 20 laps. Winner was #4 Dale Tucker by a half car length over #96 Levi Weisflock in 2nd. #97 Devin Service pulled up 3rd, #71 Taylor Larrett 4th,and #05 Tristan Anderson fifth.
Fans were entertained during intermission with a School Bus Race, followed by a Lawn Tractor Race, then some really exciting Spectator Drags that had the crowd cheering. All three of these events will be posted on the Laird Raceway Website by early next week. Go to www.lairdraceway.com and click on the video link under the media menu item. Feature races from the night will also be posted there, along with some videos from past events.
Photos from the night can also be found on the Lairdraceway.com website under the media menu item – photos.
Also visit our Facebook site for more schedule updates and information.
Our next scheduled race will be “Modified Madness” on Thursday Aug 11th. Come join your friends and neighbours to watch some great weekday entertainment!
Article Credit: Tom Stephenson
Submitted By: Tom Stephenson