Unity RacewayBrian Whitney of Burnham added another extra-distance main event first-place trophy to his collection, outgunning reigning track champion Jeff Burgess of Fairfield in the 52-lap Late Model division main event on Opening Day at Unity Raceway on Saturday.

Whitney and Burgess swapped the race lead, and a little bit of paint, a couple of times during the closing laps in a competitive feature race highlighting the first stock car racing card in Maine this season. Whitney, who has been most successful in extra-distance event in recent seasons at Unity Raceway, led the vast majority of the race, first battling Palmyra racer Ajay Picard for supremacy.

Late in the event Whitney had not only the reigning track kingpin challenging, but the returning prodigy breathing down his tailpipes as well. Three-time Unity Raceway champion Frank Moulton of Burnham, who took a year off from competition at Maine’s Toughest Racing Oval, was in the mix as the laps wound down, eventually settling for a third-place finish behind Whitney and Burgess.

Early contender Picard held on to post a fourth-place finish. Mike Orr or Wiscasset rounded out the top-five. Main event winner Whitney also scored a heat race victory earlier in the afternoon.

Mathew Burgoine, of Newport, led wire-to-wire in the NELCAR Legends Cars 25-lapper. He was challenged throughout the main event by Manchester teen Reid Lanpher, who claimed runner-up honors in front of another fast-closing youngster, Kevin Hutchens of East Waterboro. Lincoln’s Alan Smith crossed the finish line in fourth position, with Topsham’s Bobby Weymouth rounding out the top five. Burgoine and Lanpher won the heat races.

Brian Robbins of Montville cruised to an easy victory in the 25-lap Wildcat feature event. Ed Gilblair of Skowhegan was a distant second-place finisher, with Brandon Bourne of East Wakefield, New Hampshire claiming the final trophy position. Burnham’s Brent ‘Poochie’ Chase spent much of the event in second position before mechanical woes relegated him to a fourth-place finish. Robbins also won the heat race.

Multi-time Late Model Pro Four division champion Steve Rackliff of Starks claimed victory in his return to full-time competition in the class, but Bryan Lancaster of Skowhegan made sure it wasn’t easy. Rackliff and Lancaster swapped the lead on late-race restarts, and Lancaster kept the pressure on Rackliff until the checkered flag, earning runner-up honors. Alex Fernald of Benton filled out the podium positions after the car owners for apparent third-place finisher Kevin Douglass of Sidney refused a post-race technical inspection. Benton’s Jimmy Dennis and Dylan Lancaster of Skowhegan rounded out the top five. Rakliff won the heat race.

Reigning division champion Zach Audet of Skowhegan led wire-to-wire in the 25-lap Monster Mini main event. Farmington’s Tim Collins prevailed in an intense battle for runner-up honors, just ahead of multi-time class champion Mike Wilson of Chelsea. Clinton teen Cole Robinson made his debut in the division an impressive one, claiming a fourth-place finish. Matt Shaw of Burnham rounded out the top five. Audet won the heat race.

Young Cody Robbins of Oakland posted his first Unity Raceway victory in an extremely-competitive 20-lap Flyin’ 4 division feature race. The event featured several lead changes among the eventual top-four finishers. Newlywed Mika Stover, formerly known as Mika Wilson, was in second position as the checkered flag waved, with Benton’s George Fernald III next across the stripe. Kayla Allen of Penobscot was in contention throughout the race and claimed a fourth-place finish. Waterville’s Kersey Santos rounded out the top five. Robbins won the heat race.

Veteran Ken Lord of Waterville outdueled teammate Robert MacDonald of Oakland to claim victory in the 25-lap Challenger division finale. Montville’s Mike Flagg wheeled a mini-van to an impressive third-place finish, in front of Waterville’s Mike Stowe, and Christie Foster of Skowhegan. MacDonald won the heat race.

Racing action resumes Saturday afternoon (April 28) at 1:00 p.m., with afternoon events scheduled until night racing kicks off on Memorial Day Weekend. For more information call (207) 453-2021 or visit untiyraceway.info

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Late Model (52 laps) 1. 18 Brian Whitney, Burnham; 2. X Jeff Burgess, Fairfield; 3. 15 Frank Moulton, Burnham; 4. 99 Ajay Picard, Palmyra; 5. 3 Mike Orr, Wiscasset; 6. 9 Dylan Turner, Freedom; 7. 21 Mike Landry, Oakland; 8. 25 Will Collins, Waldoboro; 9. 0 James Osmond, Wiscasset; DNS: Justin Drake, Burnham; Craig Robbins, Montville.

NELCAR Legends Cars (25 laps) 1. Mathew Burgoine, Newport; 2. 59 Reid Lanpher, Manchester; 3. 27 Kevin Hutchens, East Waterboro; 4. 33 Alan Smith, Lincoln; 5. 399 Bobby Weymouth, Topsham; 6. 56 Evan Beaulieu, Durham; 7. 88 Steve Fox, Durham; 8. 10 Ed Getty, Gray; 9. 2 Ryan Hammar, Pembroke, NH; 10.17 Terry Kirk, Durham; 11. 81 Dan Winter, Windham, NH; 12. 84 Matt Grant, Windham; 13. 8 Matt Chagnot, Derry, NH; 14. 96 Wyatt Alexander, Ellsworth; 15. 49 Pete Cannell, South Berwick; 16. 12 Charlie Buxton, Windham.

Wildcat (25 laps) 1. 51 Bryan Robbins, Montville; 2. 24 Ed Gilblair, Skowhegan; 3. 31x Brandon Bourne, East Wakefield, NH; 4. 31 Brent Chase, Burnham.

Late Model Pro Four (25 laps) 1. 94 Steve Rackliff, Starks; 2. 81 Bryan Lancaster, Skowhegan; 3. 91 Alex Fernald, Benton; 4. 38 Jimmy Dennis, Benton; 5. 1 Dylan Lancaster, Skowhegan; 6. 26 Norm Cummings, Jr., Augusta; DQ 9 Kevin Douglass, Sidney.

Monster Mini (25 laps) 1. 19 Zach Audet, Skowhegan; 2. 18 tim Collins, Farmington; 3. 92 Mike Wilson, Chelsea; 4. 61 Cole Robinson, Clinton; 5. 09 Matt Shaw, Burnham; 6. 84 Michael Bolduc, Windsor; 7. 62 Kyle Robinson, Clinton; 8. 56 Paul Jackson, Fairfield; 9. 26 Brent Roy, Vassalboro.

Flyin’ 4 (20 laps) 1. 15 Cody Robbins, Oakland; 2. 11 Mika Stover, Augusta; 3. 91 George Fernald III, Benton; 4. 20 Kayla Allen, Penobscot; 5. 35 Kerlsyl Santos, Waterville; 6. 04 Nate Tribbett, Richmond; 7. 96 Samantha Farnham, Benton; 8. 00 Alica Goodwin, Clinton.

Challenger (25 laps) 1. 28 Ken Lord, Waterville; 2. 84 Robert MacDonald, Oakland; 3. 5 Mike Flagg, Montville; 4. 45 Mike Stowe, Waterville; 5. 19 Christie Foster, Skowhegan; 6. 7 Troy Rusconi, Clinton; 7. 88 Bob Corson, Benton.

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