MIKE HOPKINS TAKES POINTS TITLE BY ONE POINT
Wayne Parritt of Steuben took the lead in the Dysart’s Late Model feature from Winterport’s Ryan Deane on lap 27 at Speedway 95 Saturday night and went on to win the 35 lap feature, posting his second win in four weeks. Deane Smart of Bradley was close behind, challenging Parritt for the position, but unable to complete a pass and settling for second in the season finale. Meanwhile, Ellsworth’s Andy Saunders was working his way up from the 12th starting position to finish third, and also became a factor in the divisions’ point’s race. Ryan Deane and Mike Hopkins of Hermon started the night only one point apart in the standings. Deane had finished second in the first qualifier, putting him seven points ahead. Then Hopkins won his qualifier, gaining 10 points, retaking the lead by a 3 point margin. In the feature, Deane led the first 27 laps of the event, but Hopkins was mired in fifth, with a right front tire that was slowly losing air. Unable to make any progress, Hopkins was helpless to do anything but ride, letting lady luck determine his fate. That luck came in the form of Saunders who crossed the finish line in third by a nose over Deane, relegating Deane to a fourth place finish. With 2 points difference in each position, when Hopkins finished in fifth, his points lead for the season and the championship was down to one. Fortunately for Hopkins, the top five had separated themselves from the remainder of the field by enough of a margin so no one else could pass Hopkins, who continued to slow as his tire leaked. After crossing the finish line, Hopkins went to the pit showering sparks as his suspension scraped the track due to the now flat tire. A quick tire change by his crew brought Hopkins back out to do the now popular “burnout” to celebrate his championship. The remainder of the night’s finishing order in the Dysart’s Late Models was 6. Don Alexander Jr., Carmel, 7. Duane Seekins, Stockton Springs, 8. John Kalel II, Orrington, 9. Donny Blanchard, Sangerville, 10. George Dunn, Eastbrook, 11. Alex Waltz, Damariscotta, 12. Bob Seger Jr. Framkfort, 13. Lloyd Nickerson, Corinth. 14. Dale Swoboda, Hermon, 15. Shane Clark, Winterport.
Steve Moulton of Holden put an exclamation point on his season championship in the division as he cruised to victory in the night’s feature after taking the lead on lap 17, when early leader Gene Wasson of Greenbush and D.J. Moody of Prospect tangled while racing for the lead. Wasson led the first 17 laps, but as Moody attempted to pass on the inside, the two collided, bringing out the race’s only caution. On the restart, Moulton grabbed the lead and drove off to victory. Derek Mingo of Lamoine also got by Moody on the restart to finish second, with Moody coming home third. Deane Smart of Bradley finished fourth with Kris Watson of Hermon rounding out the top five. Pole sitter Duane Seekins of Stockton Springs finished sixth, followed by Mike Overlock of Franklin, Cody Brassbridge of Frankfort, Gene Wasson of Greenbush and Jason Levesque of Limestone.
In the Strictly Streets, Shelby Kimball of Cornville posted the third victory of her rookie season in the division, once again holding off points champion Andrew McLaughin of Harrington for the win. In all three of her wins, Kimball has had to keep 10 time winner McLaughlin at bay, as he was always right on her bumper, trying to rattle her to make a mistake. Kimball once again maintained her composure and drove to the win. McLaughlin finished second in the feature, but took the points title for the season by a substantial margin over Kimball. Third in the night’s race was Ren Dore of Addison, who came back from a horrific crash last week with a different car and ran his best race of the season. Fourth went to Cherryfield’s Ryan Beale, and Cody Brassbridge, who was involved with Dore’s crash last week finished fifth. Chuck Hall of Cherryfield slid behind the wheel of the car normally driven by Jim Carr Jr. of Clifton and finished a strong sixth. Al Libby of Belfast was seventh, followed by 72 year old Ken Bowness of Glenburn in eighth. Ninth went to Shawn Hamel Ii of Bangor with Wayne Parritt Jr. of Steuben in tenth. Mike Shaw of Troy finished 11th and Shawn Racilla of Dover-Foxcroft was 12th.
Donny Silva of Hudson started on the pole in the Sport-Four feature and ran off and hid from the field in the caution free 20 lap event, winning by almost a half lap. Bradley Norris of Ellsworth took the runner up spot in the race, and won the season’s points title over Steve Heath of Milo, who finished the race in third. Gerry Phillips of Hermon finished fourth with Becky Elston of Carmel in fifth. The remainder of the field was 6. Mike Heath, Brownville, 7. Keith Ogden, Dedham, 8. Fred Ashmore, Ellsworth. 9. Bradley Dolan, Winterport, 10. Brock Worster, Kingman, 11. James Johnson II, Bucksport, 12, Phil Richardson, Hermon 13. Matt Shaw, Burnham.
In the Bomber finale, 13 year old Emma Libby of Glenburn made it four in a row and five for the season as she passed Carmel’s Ted Ryder on a mid-race restart and held him off for the win. Ryder finished in second, followed by 2011 Little Enduro champion Darren Durrell of Newburgh in third. Fourth went to Hermon’s Ryan Modery, who captured the points title in the Bomber division for the season. Daymon Dodge of Troy finished the race in fifth. Kevin Seekins of Frankfort was sixth, followed by Matt Kimball of Cornville, who was the season champion in the Wednesday night Stars of Tomorrow division for 2011 in seventh. Kayla Allen of Bucksport finished eighth, with Durbon Davis of Bangor ninth and Andrew Allen of Hermon rounding out the top ten. Amy Houde of Howland finished 11th, Mark Lane of Newport was 12th, 13th went to Andrew Crosby of Hermon and Darrel Ogden of Old Town was 14th.