Thunder Road SpeedBowl
Doug Turner of Milton, VT went for a leisurely drive Sunday at Barre's Thunder Road and came away with the $2,000 top prize in the 21st annual M&M Beverage Enduro 200. At the helm of a virtually street legal older model Pontiac Grand Prix, Turner was the first to complete the 200-lap distance around the high banked, quarter-mile oval in front of a huge crowd. He had been scheduled to start in the middle of the 116-car starting grid.

Turner ran second to West Topsham, VT driver, Tad Kingsbury for a good share of the race and was even able to take the lead on a couple of occasions. With less than 10 laps remaining the pair was running almost nose to tail around the greasy, wreck strewn track. As they rounded the third turn, a back marker lost control of his car and crashed into leader Kingsbury. Turner surged into the lead as Kingsbury tried to get his car back on track.
Kingsbury's efforts were all for naught as Turner put him a lap in arrears by passing him before he could get started again. Jamie Benneig of Williston, an early race leader finished second with 199 laps. Steve Mishkit from Granville (197), Swanton's Keith Bushey (194), Kingsbury (193) completed the top five. Rounding out the top ten was former M&M Beverage Enduro 200 winner, Don Tofani of Plainfield in sixth with 193 laps, Jared Henry from Topsham (193), Colchester's David Mitchell (188), Johnny Raper from Williamstown (187) and Phillip Mullen of Cambridge (184). Of the 116 starters, just 27 were still in competition when the checkered flag flew.
Enduro racing has been in existence for nearly 25 years. The goal is to be the first to complete the posted distance. Thunder Road starts its event by lining the cars three-wide starting in the first turn as determined by draw when the competitors arrive at the track. Increasing the event's degree of difficulty are the disabled cars that are left where they land. They form obstacles for those still in competition aiming for the checkered flag.
Accompanying the Enduro was the second race in the Sunoco Ethanol Street Stock Triple Crown Series. Milton's Joe Small who pilots the R&D car for Thunder Road's alternative fuel program won the 50-lap event. Small, who started 24th in the 31-car field had to work hard for his victory as only two cautions slowed the field. He took the lead from early pacesetter Tim Potter with just two laps remaining.
Potter, of Plainfield held on for second while rookie runner, Barre's Steve Quenneville was third. Rounding out the top five was Hyde Park's Kyle Tatro and Craftsbury's Joel Hodgdon.
Thunder Road's four weekly divisions are back in action Thursday night with the Calkins Portable Toilets/Windshield World Trophy Dash, which will feature the annual Port-A-Potty Grand Prix. Post time is 7:00 pm