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photo from NEMST

photo from NEMST

Under constant cloud cover and light drizzle the NEMST along with its primary sponsors Texas Roadhouse and Twisted Tea kicked off its 7th season at Lee USA Speedway. Twenty-Two tour style mini stocks anchored the infield of Lee, New Hampshire’s fast 3/8 mile speedway. In morning practice it was evident that there were numerous cars running in some very tight brackets and would make an excellent race.

 
Just after 1:00 P.M. the first of two Environmental Engines heat races rolled out with Toby Wells taking control in heat 1 and Joe Baxter surviving a late race battle with Nick Anderson to secure their first wins of the season. Wells drew a 5 row invert for the feature setting him up for a 9th place starting position in the 22 car feature.
 

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photo by Rich Hayes

photo by Rich Hayes

Lee, NH – Lee USA Speedway swung open the gates Sunday afternoon to drop the green flag on the 2015 season with the annual running of the New Hampshire Governor’s Cup 150 American Canadian Tour (ACT) Late Model event.  The traditional season-opener also featured the NEMST Mini Stocks and Northeast Classic Lites doing battle at “New Hampshire‘s Center of Speed“.

 

The Northeast Mini Stock Tour got the honor of being the first feature that took to the fast 3/8th’s mile for the new season, with Cris King leading early and often before 6-time winner and 2014 NEMST champion Toby Wells finally worked his way past and took over the top spot.

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Photos by Rich Hayes

Eddie MacDonald staged a familiar battle with eventual winner Wayne Helliwell in the Governor’s Cup 150 at their home track Lee USA Speedway on Sunday May 26 to post a third place finish in an exciting duel. The Grimm Construction/Hancock Electric Chevy started third on the grid after winning the heat to score a +2 rating.

Twenty-seven cars took the green flag under stormy skies that dictated the early race strategy for Eddie Mac saying, “We were riding around comfortably in sixth place when a little rain began to fall around lap 25. It looked like heavy rain would arrive shortly so we decided to go get some spots in case the race ended at the halfway mark. I used up a lot of the car racing on the outside for position. No one was out there so the little bit of rain really hurt the tires. Of course the rain never came but we committed early instead of saving tires for the end. We did what we needed to do and that’s just racing.” Read Full Article →

Eric LaFleche/VLFPhotos.com photo

Eric LaFleche/VLFPhotos.com photo

Lee, NH — Wayne Helliwell Jr. came out on top of a battle with fellow home track driver Eddie MacDonald to win the American-Canadian Tour (ACT) New Hampshire Governor’s Cup 150 at Lee USA Speedway in Lee, NH.

Helliwell took the lead from MacDonald for the final time on a lap 117 restart following a caution for defending champion Joey Polewarczyk Jr.’s spin entering turn 3. The Dover, NH driver then held off McDonald and Maine youngster Brad Babb on two ensuing restarts to win his first Tour race at the 3/8-mile oval and eighth overall.

“We were able to cool our tires down and just crowd (MacDonald) down on that restart,” said Helliwell, who unofficially assumed the point lead following the event. “That helped us get the momentum and the drive up off the turn. Once we got to the lead, we were able to just keep the car on the bottom and roll around.

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Photo Credit Chip Cormie

Photo Credit Chip Cormie

Gray and Parks round out podium

Claremont, NH –               Derek Griffith picked up his first career Granite State Pro Stock Series victory in dominating fashion as Claremont Speedway opened up a new chapter.

 

Griffith, of Hudson, NH became a quick study in his first visit to the tricky quarter-mile oval. His first laps around the speedway were some of the fastest he would turn all night, and the quickest of the 13 cars that arrived. He also led second round practice as well.

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photo by Alan Ward

photo by Alan Ward

Barre, VT – The Allen Lumber Street Stock division at Thunder Road Speedbowl is guaranteed to have a different champion in 2015. Defending Champion Tommy Smith is moving up to the Bond Auto Tiger Sportsmen, which opens the door for a number of contenders to ascend to the Street Stock Championship.

 

2014 Street Stock runner-up Alan Maynard looks to lead the charge. The Fairfax, VT driver finished in the top-10 in all 18 races. His impressive run of consistency saw him fall 10 points short of Smith. The University of Vermont associate professor returns this year with the same car and a fresh determination to capture the title.

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photo by Alan Ward

Barre, VT – The Bond Auto Tiger Sportsmen will take to the high banks of Thunder Road for the 34th consecutive year in 2015. Defending Champion Jason Woodard leads a mix of veterans and rising stars alike will vie for the championship in the famed division.

 

Waterbury Ctr., VT’s Woodard is the first driver since 2010 to try and defend the Tiger Sportsmen title. He rode a remarkable run of consistency to the 2014 crown, finishing eighth or better in each of the 18 events. Woodard topped veteran Brendan Moodie, Jr. by 17 points in a battle that came down to the final laps of the season-ending Mini Milk Bowl.

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Emily PackardEAST MONTPELIER, Vt. – After a disappointing run at New Smyrna, Emily Packard and the Northstar Fireworks/Packard Fuels team spent the last 6 weeks focusing on bettering the car for the American Canadian Tour opener, and it looks to have paid off.  In Packard’s first trip to Oxford Plains Speedway, a track that really suits her driving style, the sophomore driver in the ACT tour showed patience of a veteran, which paid off with a fourth place finish.  “When we returned from New Smyrna, we found a few little things that were wrong with the car, but we made those changes and just seeing how it ran this weekend makes me feel a lot better about going forward through the season,” said Packard.

 

With limited practice on Friday, the team unloaded the car Sunday and readied it for first practice.  Packard took to the track for a few laps, posting the fourth fastest time in that first practice then brought the car back to the attention of crew chief, Neal Woodward, to see if they could make any changes to get it a little tighter through turns 3 and 4, but all in all the car was really good.  “After the first practice, we knew that we had a really good car at that point, and we just spent the remaining practices trying a couple things to see if we could make the car better or how the car changed after each adjustment,” Packard said.

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Photos- Eric LaFleche

Photos- Eric LaFleche

Claremont, NH – Derek Griffith, the young, talented Pro-Stock driver from New Hampshire will be making his Claremont Speedway debut this Friday, April 24th as the Granite State Pro Stock Series (GSPSS) makes its return to the 1/3 mile facility for 125 green flag laps.

Formally known as Twin State Speedway, Claremont is under new ownership for 2015 and is ready to set the stage for what should be an exciting event.

Griffith will be entering Claremont not knowing anything about the race track, “I don’t think I’ve ever been there, maybe when I was a little kid but I can’t remember” remarked Derek.

“This will be exciting for our MOM’s of Manchester/LCM Racing crew as Louie [Crew Chief Louie Mechalides] doesn’t even have any set-up sheets for Claremont. I think it’ll be a learning experience, that’s for sure. “ Read Full Article →

devilsbowlDevil’s Bowl Speedway Fan Festival Returning to Downtown Rutland
Rutland Region Chamber of Commerce to host racecar show on May 9

RUTLAND, VT – The windows will rattle and the ground will shake in one of Vermont’s largest cities on Saturday, May 9 as the Rutland Region Chamber of Commerce hosts the return of the Devil’s Bowl Speedway Fan Festival in Downtown Rutland, VT. The free-admission racecar show will give fans an up-close preview of the racing season and a chance to meet the drivers at Devil’s Bowl Speedway just hours before the season premiere in nearby West Haven, VT.

Cars and drivers from the track’s NASCAR Whelen All-American Series will line Center Street in the heart of the shopping, dining, and entertainment district of the city with gleaming machines from the Bond Auto Parts Modified, Central Vermont Motorcycles Late Model, Brileya’s Chrysler-Jeep Renegade, and Portland Glass Mini Stock divisions. Fans can meet drivers, collect autographs, and enter to win tickets for the opening event at Devil’s Bowl Speedway that evening.
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photo by Eric Lafleche

Waterbury, VT – The American-Canadian Tour (ACT) and Airborne Park Speedway have announced a new “Triple Crown” program for the Canada-based Série ACT Late Model Tour. The 2015 Triple Crown will offer point fund of more than $10,000 to Série ACT competitors for events held at the ½-mile oval in Plattsburgh, NY.

 

ACT will visit Airborne three times in 2015. The Série ACT season and the Triple Crown will kick off with the Spring Green 115 on Saturday night, May 16 as part of a combination event with the ACT U.S. Tour. The International 500 on Saturday, July 18 and Sunday, July 19 will be the Triple Crown’s second leg, with the ACT championship cars running a 200-lap open event in their half of the program. The Pro All Stars Series (PASS) Super Late Models will also run a 200-lap event that weekend.

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Photo - Derek Griffith's Facebook Page

Photo – Derek Griffith’s Facebook Page

Thompson, CT – 18 year-old Hudson, NH native Derek Griffith had a plan for the Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park (TSMP) Icebreaker. The plan was to feel good enough in his Pro Stock to compete for the win at the 5/8th mile, high-banked oval.

His plan almost can to a realization as he ended up with a runner-up finish in the 40-lap Granite State Pro Stock Series (GSPSS) season opening event.
Griffith, who is racing a freshly overhauled Toyota Camry stated he felt good in Saturday’s heat race until he started having stagger issues with the tires. “We were having a good heat, until for some reason we started having stagger issues and the handling went away quickly. We got it dialed in for the feature.”

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leeLee, NH – Although the season-opening American Canadian Tour (ACT) Late Model event had to pushed back two weeks due to the heavy snows Mother Nature piled on the Lee USA Speedway this winter, all systems are go to open the 2015 season on the rescheduled date of April 25 at “New Hampshire‘s Center of Speed“.

The Northeast Classic Lites and North East Mini Stock Tour will also be taking to the fast 3/8th’s mile as part of the opener, and the pre-season touring series action continues with the second annual Bullring Bash for the Tri-Track Open Modified Series along with the NEMST and the North East Street Stock Tour on May 17. Read Full Article →

The Devoted Daredevil: Jim Boyle Makes Racing a Family Affair

NORTH STONINGTON, CT – Jim Boyle started his racing career a step behind most drivers. The East Windsor, CT resident climbed behind the wheel of a Super X car at New London-Waterford Speedbowl at age 43, with help of friends and family.

“I have always been a race fan, and now that my kids are older, and time is a little more available, it seemed like something my son, Jim Jr., and I could do together,” Boyle spoke. “We both love the sport, and he is my right-hand man, putting in the hours it takes to run competitively.”

Boyle’s wife of twenty years, Deanna, has been by his side with everything the risk-taker does; Jim loves to sky dive, scuba dive, and ride his Harley-Davidson motorcycle, as well; and his four children, and three grandchildren, are all devout race fans. The relationship between family and racing doesn’t end there.
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photo by RPM 360

photo by RPM 360

Story by Chris Roy
Robby Gordon Douglas from Derry , NH will be back behind the wheel of the #27 car in the Pro Wraps Bandolero Series at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. “My plans are to run a full season at NHMS as well as visit Charlotte Motor Speedway for as many as 4 of the Summer Shootout Series races. I also plan to race at Atlanta Motor Speedway, hopefully Star Speedway. Also I will run my new truck in the Kid’s Truck division at White Mountain Motor Sports Park . Finally, I plan to run for wins.”

 

There is no off season when comes to racing, “I have been playing soccer for my school and a premier travel team for the town of Derry , practice different tracks on Iracing, and video games as well as visiting Maine Indoor Karting and working in the garage. I have been working towards my Eagle badge in Boy Scouts; at this point I am a Life scout. Also, I have been preparing to become a freshman at Pinkerton High School. I have also been working on my Second Degree Black belt in Kempo karate that I will receive in the fall.”

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