Defending Rev's Full Throttle Powersports Modified Lite Champion Jeff May of Mount Hope took home his first Feature Win at the Thorold d-shaped oval.
Defending Champions as well Mat Williamson and Cody McPherson both of St. Catharines won their second 2015 Features in the Pinty's Delicious Foods 358 Modifieds and Rick's Delivery Sportsman Divisions.
Lucas Oil Weekly Racing Series action also had Jason Coutu also from the Garden City also of the Garden City win his third feature in the Van Raine Construction 4 Cylinder Division. Jason Fontaine of Port Colborne rounded out the winners – taking home his second win in the Hoosier Stock Division.
"This has been five or six years coming ... we've had success everywhere we've run but not here," said Jeff May who won the points championship last season without visiting victory lane, "it was a little nerve racking with everyone behind me but it's great to finally get this monkey off our backs!"
Steven Beckett was the initial leader at the start of the 20 lap Event until May took over top spot to complete Lap 1.
A Lap 3 incident slowed the pace with May back in control on the restart. By Lap 5, Derek Wagner had come from a 10th place start was battling for second spot with Rob Misener. Caution on lap 10 would close the field once more. While under a lengthy caution and red flag to run in spilled fluid, Wagner pulled into the pits before action resumed.
May was back out front with Josh Sliter taking second from Misener. Shawn Sliter in the Jamie Gilbert # 53 rebounded from an earlier incident to take second spot just before a lap 11 caution. May was back in front on the restart holding off Shawn Sliter until the challenger could not hold on to his car and was sitting backwards in Turn 2. May was again out front on the restart with Josh Sliter applying the pressure. Lap 19 would see one last caution as initial leader Beckett was off the pace setting up a one lap dash to the checkered flag.
May would hold off Josh Sliter with Misener third. Shawn Sliter and Chris Watson would round out the Top Five.
"At lap 30 I was thinking gas mileage ... did I have enough fuel?" said Mat Williamson who survived a caution filled Feature to win his second of the season, "it was like an Enduro out there ... I just had to keep hitting my marks."
Dave Flannigan Jr. was first to lead the 35 lap event until a Lap 3 incident found Australia's Brett Clarke sitting the wrong way. Travis Miller was quickly the new leader until a second caution slowed the pace one lap later.
With Miller out front on the restart, Scott Wood was quickly the new leader. Wood was comfortably out front with Miller being challenged by Mat Williamson and Mark D'Ilario. Just before a Lap 11 caution that saw early leader Flannigan off the pace and Mike Bowman pull off the racing surface Willamson was in the runner up spot. The return to racing was delayed when Wood fired early with Williamson in control when the green was back out. By the halfway point, Williamson had driven away from Wood with Tyler McPherson taking over third just before lap 20.
The field would be slowed once again on lap 22 when Chris Steele slowed off the pace showing all kinds of smoke from the Cosco Haulage 17c. Williamson would resume control on the restart until a number of cars came together in Turn 2. The return to racing was delayed when Mike Bowman spun in Turn 1.
Williamson was back in control with Wood being challenged by McPherson and then Chad Brachmann. Contact between Travis Miller and Tommy Flannigan resulted in heavy contact with the front stretch wall for the Andrew Sittler-owned 37s. Once again Williamson was out front ahead of an almost three wide battle for the runner up spot until a lap 30 caution. Williamson's return to action had Chad Brachmann take over the runner up spot. Williamson and Brachmann were followed by Boyd MacTavish, Tyler McPherson and Fred Carleton. Just 10 of the 19 starters finished.
"I knew I had to take advantage of a good starting spot," said Cody McPherson, defending champion, "the car was good anywhere but was dominant around the bottom. We dug a deep hole to start the season ... we'll concentrate on winning some more and what happens ... happens."
Jordan Cosco set the pace at the start of the 25 lap Feature for the Rick's Delivery Sportsman Division before Justin Sharp took control down the backstretch. The pace would be slowed on Lap 2. Sharp would resume control of top spot until unfortunate contact with Jason Moore slowed the field before another lap was complete. Sharp in the lead would have Brent Begolo and Cody McPherson battling for position until Begolo became the new leader on lap five.
Racing towards the halfway point McPherson would close in on Begolo – taking the lead on lap 11 and would quickly drive away from the pack. Despite heavy lap traffic McPherson would pull away to almost a straightaway advantage by lap 20. McPherson would be followed by Begolo, Brad Rouse, Gary Lindberg and James Friesen.
"A good starting spot was key," said three time 2015 4 Cylinder Feature Winner Jason Coutu in Victory Lane, "I have having some trouble with this car lately ... I think we have it figured out ... we're back in Victory Lane!"
Kourtney Kocarik first to lead the 15 lap Feature for the Van Raine Construction sponsored division until Alex Pidgeon was the new leader with one lap in the books. Jason Coutu would follow Pidgeon to the front and from the runner-up spot took over the lead out of Turn 4 to complete lap four. Racing towards the halfway point, Coutu would stretch his lead on the field with Kyle Haynes taking second spot from Sam Iftody on Lap 9. On the Lucas Oil Live Leaderboard Haynes was putting up laps quicker than the leader.
With two laps to go the margin was some two car lengths but Haynes could come no closer in the caution free event. Coutu and Haynes were followed by Kyle Rothwell, Rob Goulding and Iftody.
"I have so many to thank for helping me get this new motor in the car," said Hoosier Stock Feature Winner Jason Fontaine, "Happy Birthday to my cousin Kevin and special thanks to James Friesen and Thruway Muffler ... without them I wouldn't have had anything."
Dave Bailey and Kyle Pelrine were side by side taking the green flag to start the 20 lap Feature until Bailey took control the first time down the backstretch. Quickly Kevin Knapp and Jason Fontaine landed in second and third with Fontaine able to get by Knapp by lap five. To start Lap 7 Fontaine raced into top spot. By Lap 10 the top three had spread apart to gaps of some 10 car lengths between them with Knapp finding Mark Fawcett closing in.
Coming up on lap traffic Fontaine and Bailey would pull away from the field with Fawcett took over third. Caution on lap 18 set the stage for a two lap dash to the finish. Fontaine would lead the field back to green with Fawcett landing in second setting the scene for quite a finish. Going three wide in the final lap, Fontaine would hold off Fawcett with Bailey third. Rob Murray would take fourth. Unfortunately Knapp was penalized for pulling out of line on the restart resulting in Jack Myers taking fifth.
May, Williamson, McPherson, Coutu and Fontaine shared $400.00 in Bonus Money provided by Hingston Metal Fabcricators. Williamson became the fourth driver to win 2 features in the Pinty's 358 Modified Division as the winner's list is stuck at 10 – his first win ... three months ago to the day in the Seaway Mall Spring Sizzler to start the season April 25th.
UPCOMING AT MERRITTVILLE SPEEDWAY
Tim Hortons will kick off the second Doubleheader of 2015 with the Rick's Delivery Sportsman Division featured in the second David Chevrolet King of the Crates Series in addition to another Hoosier Stock Duel on the Dirt Home Track Event Saturday August 1st.
Monday August 3rd – L. St. Amand Enterprises and St. Amand Auto and Truck Repair will present the 6th Annual Bob St. Amand Senior Memorial 100 lap Super DIRTcar Series in addition to Sportsman, Hoosier Stocks and the final Ballhockey.com Enduro Qualifier accelerated by Niagara College.
Also on the card – FIREWORKS and the famous Club Castropignano Pasta Dinner..
For all the news on Merrittville Speedway's 64th Consecutive Season in 2015 – visit www.merrittvillespeedway.com. Become a fan of Merrittville Speedway on Face Book at www.facebook.com/Merrittville Speedway and follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/Merrittville
Rev's Full Throttle Power Sports Modified Lite Feature (20 laps) Jeff May, Josh Sliter, Shawn Sliter, Chris Watson, RJ Pietz, Marty deMoel, Kellie Mason, Ray Sliter Jr., Mike Journeaux, Steven Beckett, Derek Wagner, Dean Pronovost, Dylan Davidson.
Pinty's Delicious Foods DIRTcar 358 Modified Feature (35 laps) Mat Williamson, Chad Brachmann, Boyd MacTavish, Tyler McPherson, Bill Bleich, Fred Carleton, Todd Gordon, Pete Bicknell, Mark D'Ilario, Scott Wood, Brett Clarke, Brandon Easey, Tommy Flannigan, Mike Bowman, Chris Steele, Dave Flannigan Jr., Tim Jones, Billy Dunn, Travis Miller.
Rick's Delivery DIRTcar Sportsman Feature (25 laps) Cody McPherson, Brent Begolo, Brad Rouse, Gary Lindberg, James Friesen, Jay Mallory, Paul Gaboury, Rob Knapp, Justin Sharp, Joey Mastroianni, Austin Wood, Charlie Lynch, Jason Moore, Chad Chevalier, Jordan Cosco, Chris Storm, Paul Williamson, Gord McIntosh, Gord Moreau, Rick Bellante, Derick Hodge.
Van Raine Construction 4 Cylinder Feature (15 laps) Jason Coutu, Kyle Haynes, Kyle Rothwell, Rob Goulding, Sam Iftody, Tyler Lafantaisie, Mike Sadusek, Jeremy Smith, Alex Pidgeon, Tony Kelly, Kourtney Kocarik, Mike Giberson, Dennis Teeple, Kurtis Wiley, Gary Hodason, Jay Moulton, Brandon Pidgeon, Alex Riley.
Hoosier Stock Feature (20 laps) Jason Fontaine, Mark Fawcett, Dave Bailey, Rob Misener, Rob Murray, Dale Gyokery, Kevin Knapp, Pete Reid, Jim Lampman, Kyle Pelrine, Billy Bleich Jr., Billy Hogue, Brad Sheehan, Chris Schneider, Derek VanMill.
MERRITTVILLE SPEEDWAY SPONSORS The 2015 64th Anniversary Lucas Oil Weekly Racing Series for Merrittville Speedway's 5 Divisions is brought to race fans and racers by division sponsors – Pinty's Delicious Foods, Rick's Delivery, Rev's Full Throttle Powersports, Hoosier Tire Canada and Van Raine Construction and Contingency Partners http://www.merrittvillespeedway.com/contingency.html in addition to many marketing partners. Visit them athttp://www.merrittvillespeedway.com/sponsors.htmand visit them when you require their products and/or services.
Lucas Oil Products is one of the fastest growing additive lines in the consumer automotive industry featuring a premium line of oils, greases and problem-solving additives. Through innovative product research and development, along with aggressive marketing programs, Lucas Oil Products has established itself as the top selling additive in the industry.
Race fans can look for Lucas Oil Products at their favourite automotive retailer or maintenance center including KC Auto Parts, RCM Racing Equipment and Tim Phillips Garage.
From: Jim Irvine/ Assistant General Manager- Merrittville Speedway
905-685-7223 Winter Office