LOUDON, NH – Tiverton, RI’s Ray Parent took his “feel good” story to another level with a payday worth over $6,000 on Saturday, September 22 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, picking up his first-ever ACT victory in the 4th Annual Bond ACT Invitational. Parent upset Serie ACT Castrol Champion Patrick Laperle, and former Invitational winner Joey Polewarczyk, Jr. for the emotional win.
Two-time Invitational winner Eddie Macdonald demoralized the field in the early going, charging from the 26th starting position while ACT Rookie of the Year Jimmy Hebert flew to the front. Hebert had made it from sixth to third in the first lap, and by lap 12 had powered by Former Oxford Plains Speedway Champion Ricky Rolfe for the point. Hebert began to pull away until teen sensation Emily Packard heartbreakingly backed into the wall on lap 15, ending her day.
Ray Parent took advantage of the timely caution, after starting 20th on the field he thrilled the cheering crowd with a four-wide move on the following restart to break into the top five. Wasting no time, he ducked underneath again for another three-wide move moments later, and by lap 19 he had stolen the lead from the hopeful Hebert. As Parent began to pull away, Macdonald, ACT point leader Wayne Helliwell, Jr., Polewarczyk, Kawartha Speedway Champion Dan Mchattie, and Laperle arrived on the scene. Macdonald quickly got to second place, and loomed large in Parent’s mirror.
A lap 26 caution brought the pair together, but at the drop of the green Macdonald’s car suddenly plummeted backwards through the field. Parent broke away with the lead, while Macdonald was eventually forced to retire, but by lap 28 Polewarczyk was hot on Parent’s trail after starting 33rd until a brutal caution on lap 33 when E. Montpelier, VT’s Joey Laquerre spinning car on the backstretch collected Milton, VT’s Brent Dragon and Groveton, NH’s Randy Potter.
When the green dropped again, Parent edged back into the lead on the inside, until a electrifying cross over move on the backstretch that put Polewarczyk under Parent for the top spot. Polewarczyk took the lead back, but only momentarily as on lap 35 Parent put the crowd on it’s feet with another cross over and snatched the lead back on the inside. The gloves came off and the laps waned down as the pair battled for the win, and with ten laps to go Laperle broke free of the pack to join the fight.
With the race coming to a close, Parent began to escape the grasp of Polewarczyk, while Laperle continued to gain. As the white flag flew Laperle made his move, diving underneath Polewarczyk in the final corner and sliding up just in front of him as they came to the checkers.
“Words can’t explain what this means to me,” said Parent in the post race press conference. “All year we’ve set ourselves up for today. This year was about exactly what we came and did here. Every race on the Tour is wheel-to-wheel, and that’s what makes it so good. We worked on getting top tens, we worked on getting top fives, but it all leads to this,” he finished.
ACT point leader Helliwell raced his way to fourth, with Rolfe on his tail in fifth. Former K&N Pro Series Driver Tom Carey, Jr. came home sixth, with 8-time ACT Champion Brian Hoar seventh, rookie Ben Lynch eighth, and two Ontario drivers: Dan McHattie and fellow Kawartha Speedway competitor Bryan Mercer, completing the top ten.
The race was slowed by just four cautions, and was completed in 1 hour, 5 minutes, and 9 seconds.
Many ACT Competitors will be at Thunder Road Speedbowl in Barre, VT for the 50th Annual People’s United Bank Milk Bowl, worth over $120,000 in posted awards on September 29th and 30th. Then the Tour will head to Airborne Speedway in Plattsburgh, NY for the championship finale on Saturday, October 6.
4th Annual Bond Auto ACT Invitational – Unofficial Results
American Canadian Tour
New Hampshire Motor Speedway – Loudon, NH
Saturday, September 22, 2012
Pos. (Start Pos) Car # Driver Hometown
1. (20) 17RI Ray Parent, Tiverton, RI
2. (31) 91QC Patrick Laperle, St-Denis, QC
3. (33) 97NH Joey Polewarczyk, Jr., Hudson, NH
4. (28) 27NH Wayne Helliwell, Jr., Dover, NH
5. (4) 51ME Ricky Rolfe, Albany Township, ME
6. (13) 07MA Tom Carey, Jr., New Salem, MA
7. (27) 37VT Brian Hoar, Williston, VT
8. (5) 7NC #Ben Lynch, Huntersville, NC
9. (24) 71ON Dan McHattie, Cavan, ON
10. (14) 81ON Bryan Mercer, Port Hope, ON
11. (32) 21QC Jean-Francois Dery, Quebec, QC
12. (16) 19QC Dany Trepanier, St-Edouard, QC
13. (30) 94ME Shawn Martin, Turner, ME
14. (18) 85ME Travis Stearns, Auburn, ME
15. (36) 57ME Austin Theriault, Fort Kent, ME
16. (6) 58VT #Jimmy Hebert, Williamstown, VT
17. (11) 78NH Quinny Welch, Whitefield, NH
18. (9) 48QC Andre Beaudoin, St. Augustin, QC
19. (25) 88ME Jeff Taylor, Farmington, ME
20. (17) 80QC Donald Theetge, Boischatel, QC
21. (22) 7ME Glen Luce, Turner, ME
22. (8) 29NH Aaron Fellows, Croydon, NH
23. (7) 68VT Brooks Clark, Fayston, VT
24. (10) 23ME Dave Farrington, Jr., Jay, ME
25. (29) 88VT Nick Sweet, Barre, VT
26. (40) 28ME Rowland Robinson, Jr., Steuben, ME
27. (12) 18VT Jamie Fisher, Shelburne, VT
28. (34) 15VT Joey Laquerre, East Montpelier, VT
29. (1) 16ON Ryan Kimball, Norwood, ON
30. (39) 77MA Jimmy Linardy, Somerville, MA
31. (41) 3VT Ricky Roberts, Washington, VT
32. (3) 61ME TJ Brackett, Buckfield, ME
33. (23) 15ME Ben Ashline, Pittston, ME
34. (2) 41VT Jamie Aube, N. Ferrisburgh, VT
35. (42) 21MA Pete Yetman, Peru, MA
36. (21) 8NH Guy Caron, Lempster, NH
37. (35) 16NY Brent Dragon, Milton, VT
38. (19) 02NH Randy Potter, Groveton, NH
39. (26) 17MA Eddie MacDonald, Rowley, MA
40. (38) 56VT Bruce Jaycox, Hartland, VT
41. (37) 9ME Emily Packard, East Montpelier, VT
42. (15) 32VT Jean-Paul Cyr, Milton, VT
Lap Leaders: Jamie Aube, 1; Ricky Rolfe, 2-11; Jimmy Hebert, 12-15; Rolfe, 16-19; Ray Parent, 20-34; Joey Polewarczyk, Jr., 35; Parent, 36-50.
Cautions: 4 (Laps 11, 15, 26, 33)
Time of Race: 1 hour, 5 minutes, 9 seconds
Margin of Victory: 1.100 seconds