Thunder Road SpeedBowl
Lenny’s “Hottest Shoe” Awards Up for Grabs at Thunder Road

Phil Scott (right) picked up a $150 Lenny's "Hot Shoe Challenge" bonus for his Late Model win on VT ACE Hardware Dealers Night

The annual Lenny’s Shoe & Apparel “Hottest Shoe” Awards are on the line for stock car drivers at Barre’s Thunder Road.  The drivers who tally the most feature event wins in the American-Canadian Tour Late Model, NAPA Tiger Sportsman, and Allen Lumber Street Stock divisions during the course of the 2007 season will each receive a year-end bonus at the annual ACT/Thunder Road Awards Banquet in January 2008.  Should two or more drivers tie for the top spot in any division, the prize money will be split evenly among them.

Braintree’s Kip Stockwell has picked up three ACT Late Model victories at Thunder Road in 2007, receiving a $150 Lenny’s “Hot Shoe Challenge” bonus for his first win of the season on Pepsi Fireworks Night on July 3.  Stockwell was awarded half money ($75) for the Lenny’s “Double Dip” bonus at his second win on Calkins/Pelletier Quick Lube Night August 2, and earned a division-leading third win on NAPA/Make-A-Wish Night one week later.  Northfield rookie Chip Grenier and Wolcott’s Marcel Gravel have each posted a pair of wins this season.  Should either of the two win the season-ending VT Milk Bowl on Sat./Sun., Sept. 29/30 and raise their season total to three victories, they will share a $500 bonus with Stockwell for the most wins in the division.  Otherwise, Stockwell will be the sole “Hottest Shoe” for 2007.

Donahue Scores First Win at Thunder Road’s Bond Auto Labor Day Classic 200

Bond Auto Labor Day Classic 200 winner "Irish" John Donahue (Stephane Lazare photo)

American-Canadian Tour (ACT) stock car racer “Irish” John Donahue of Graniteville, VT scored an upset first career win in the $50,000 ACTion Super Series 29th Bond Auto Labor Day Classic 200 at Barre, VT’s Thunder Road Int’l Speedbowl on Sunday afternoon.  Donahue battled polesitter and race leader Scott Payea of Milton, VT for 94 laps before taking over for good and driving virtually uncontested to a victory worth more than $6,000.

“It seems like we couldn’t do anything wrong all day,” Donahue beamed in the winner’s circle.  “We finally got a Tour win, and we did it at Thunder Road.  Yes!”

On a day when his main sponsor, the National Guard, swore in a group of new soldiers in a pre-race ceremony led by Vermont Adjutant General Michael Dubie, Donahue controlled his Ford Fusion through lapped traffic with ease.  Despite three restarts bunching the field after he took the lead, no other driver was able to keep pace with Donahue.

Groveton, NH veteran Randy Potter made a late charge after pitting for fresh right side tires on lap 135, and passed perennial ACT Late Model Tour Champion Jean-Paul Cyr of Milton, VT for second place with 14 laps remaining.  Cyr earned his ninth top-five finish in ten season starts with a third-place effort.  Brent Dragon, also from Milton, VT, finished a strong fourth on the outside lane.  Turner, ME’s Ben Rowe scored a career-best Thunder Road result in fifth place.

Weston Wins Saturday Bond Auto Warrior Feature at Thunder Road

Forty-Seven ACT Late Models Swell Pit Area

Hometown stock car racer Scott Weston was named the winner of the special 18-lap Bond Auto Junkyard Warrior Feature at Barre, VT’s Thunder Road on Saturday afternoon.  Weston crossed the finish line in third place after leading much of the event, but was awarded the victory after apparent first-place and second-place finishers Travis Hull and Ryan Foster were disqualified in post-race inspection.

Weston had a full straightaway lead in the opening laps, but suffered ignition troubles that allowed Hull and Foster to reel him in late in the going.  “The car’s got four spark plugs, but I don’t think any of them were working,” Weston joked in victory lane.  The win was his second of the year in the Power Shift Online Junkyard Warrior division.

As a result of the disqualifications, brothers Frank and Leonard Sanborn inherit the second and third positions, respectively.  Moretown, VT’s Jeff Martin, Jr. and point leader Bunker Hodgdon of Hardwick, VT rounded out the unofficial top five.

Forty-seven American-Canadian Tour (ACT) Late Models swelled the Thunder Road pit area during practice sessions for Sunday’s $50,000 29th Bond Auto Labor Day Classic 200, part of the ACTion Super Series.  Unofficially, Milton, VT racers Brent Dragon and Scott Payea, New Hampshire drivers Joey “Pole” Polewarczyk, Jr. of Hudson and Brad Leighton of Center Harbor, and Maine’s Mike and Ben Rowe turned the fastest lap times in practice.