Drivers from six New England states converged on Lee USA Speedway in Lee, NH for the Texas Roadhouse North East Mini Stock Tour’s make-up event that was scheduled after the original Juy 27th date was called off due to weather. Skies were sunny and the air was humid as 20 NEMST cars rolled into the pit area of the fast 3/8 mile oval.
Road course winner Mike Mason has taken a small hiatus from NEMST competition but returned with a vengeance at Lee laying down the fastest lap times through practice and winning his heat from the outside pole position. Other notable drivers include former Lee champion Loren Smith, NEMST point leader Danny Field, and multi-time Lee winner Emerson Cayer.
September 7th marked Championship Night at Lee where all regular divisions would crown their season victors. 7:15 marked the start of events with 2 NEMST heats. The heats started with a bang as a fast moving Calvin Rose was shuffling to the front on the first lap as Nic Skillings got loose. Both cars careened into the turn four retaining wall bouncing across the track and coming to a stop on the infield. The red flag was displayed as drivers were checked on by NEMST and Lee USA officials. Both cars would be finished for the night due to the extensive damage. After the clean-up pole sitter Billy Osborne paced the field for the duration of the event taking home the heat win, his second in as many races.
Louis Maher and Mike Mason led the second heat to the green flag. The rookie Mason drove the car hard into turn one almost collecting the wall while Maher sped down the backstretch. Mason would quickly recover and begin to pursue Maher for the lead. Mason made the pass on the outside and retained the position for the remainder of the heat. The inversion for the feature line-up was drawn by Nick Maniatis and was for 4 rows.
Former Lee regular Cristofer King inherited the pole after the inversion with NEMST front runner Louis Maher to his outside. King made his starting spot work as he led the first 8 laps before getting run down by 2011 Lee winner and NEMST champion Rob Greenleaf. On lap 10 John Kelly came to a stop on the front straight after an apparent ignition issue caused his engine to stop running. On the restart Greenleaf and Mason led the field with former NEMST champion Emerson Cayer fighting for a way to the front. Mason came around Greenleaf high through turn 2 and the veteran Cayer swung low beating him into turn 3. Cayer would begin to chase Mason’s fast Acura but could not match the rookies speed around the oval.
As the laps wound down in the 50 lap event Mason put on a show lapping all but the top 6 cars and out pacing two former NEMST champions in the top 3 at the finish. Cayer would hang on to the 2nd place over Greenleaf. Louis Maher would bring home another top 5 finish followed by Scott Farrington in a borrowed car for fifth.
NEMST point leader Danny Field fought a loose vehicle for the entire race but held onto a solid 7th place finish and holding onto the points lead by only 13 over Cayer. The NEMST is back in action on Sunday September 16, 2012 at the Canaan Fair Speedway along with the Granite State Pro Stock Series. Please visit www.northeastministocktour.com for additional information on upcoming and previous races.
Lee USA Bonus Awards
Sunoco Race Fuels Hard Charger: Scott Farrington
Sunoco Race Fuels Winners Challenge: Mike Mason
Texas Roadhouse Gas Card: Dana Faulkner
Racecar Engineering Gift Certificates: