Contributed by: ACT Staff
Class Day is a fan favorite at Barre's Thunder Road!
The championship battles for all four of Thunder Road’s weekly divisions are wide open in the 2007 season, as all four “Kings of the Road” have either moved up or moved on. In the ultimate “go out on top” move, Waterbury Ctr., VT veteran Chad Wheeler captured his first Thunder Road title in the ACT Late Model division in 2006, and promptly announced his retirement from driving. Wheeler has sold his inventory to rookie Chip Grenier of Northfield, VT.
Shawn Fleury leaves the intermediate NAPA Auto Parts Tiger Sportsman division after winning consecutive championships in 2005-06. Fleury will make the big jump to the Late Model division driving the VT Army National Guard Chevrolet owned by Scott Fearn of Wilbraham, MA and prepared by multi-time Champion crew chief Jeff Laquerre of East Montpelier, VT. Fleury’s two-year stranglehold on the Sportsman division produced four feature wins and a staggering 20 top 10 finishes in 32 starts.
The entry-level Allen Lumber Street Stock and Power Shift Junkyard Warrior titles are also up for grabs, as the champions of both divisions have declared their intentions to move up to a new division. In addition to winning three feature events in his “home” class, Street Stock King Eric Badore of Milton, VT tested the Sportsman waters in 2006 and will make a run at the Rookie of the Year title this season. Warrior Champion Maynard Bartlett, Jr. of Wolcott, VT also nailed down three victories and will join his father, Maynard, Sr., in the Street Stock division this year.
Class Day is an event unique to Thunder Road. Nearly 125 drivers from the four competing divisions will line their stock cars up in formation on the infield grass for presentation to the Thunder Road faithful. Battle flags bearing the car number and team colors of each of the four previous champions will be raised on Forsythe Hill in the Turn 3 seating area. The flags will fly in honor of the champions at each race event in the 2007 season. The top three finishers in each division from Saturday’s Merchants Bank Car Show will be given awards for their efforts in preparing their beautiful new machinery.
Class Day ceremonies will kick off the Sunday, May 6 program at Thunder Road at 1:00pm. The first green flag of the season drops at 1:30pm as qualifying action for the ACT Late Model Tour Merchants Bank 150 begins. The Merchants Bank Car Show will be held on Main Street in Barre City from 9:00am to 12:00 noon on Saturday, May 5, with a pit stop contest at 10:15am. For more information, call (802) 244-6963 or visit www.thunderroadspeedbowl.com.