CLAREMONT—Veteran Modsman Brian Robie stormed to his first win of the season Friday, May 31, at Claremont Motorsports Park, as did Ascutney’s favorite racing animal, Chris “The Weasel” Riendeau.
Riendeau, the third-mile speedplant’s winningest driver a year ago, topped the Casella Street Stock feature, while Robie earned his victory lap by dominating the Pepsi Sportsman Modified main event.
On the same five-division card, Pure Stock ace Kyle Templeton used his second feature win in as many weeks to move atop his division’s point standings, while both R.E. Hinkley Late Model Sportsman ace Aaron Fellows and Six-Shooter Jeremy Blood won for the fourth event in a row, Blood staying perfect on the young season by also topping his fourth qualifying race.
In the Modified main, Brian Robie and Dana Smith led the field to the green, with Robie quickly pouncing on the lead and then dashing off to score his first win of the season as he set a blistering pace over the final all-green 39 laps.
Smith, a two-time track champion, was strong all night in second, holding off hard-charging Todd Patnode to earn the deuce hardware. Patnode’s third-place run kept the Swanzey star atop the point standings.
Robert Hagar, fresh off a dominating heat race win, fired to the opening lead in the Late Model Sportsman main, with Aaron Fellows – from row two, powering past Ryan Bell to claim the deuce spot a lap later.
By lap three, Hagar, Fellows, and Ricky Bly ran nose-to-tail, maintaining that order until Fellows dove low through the east end of the track to take command on lap16. Once in front, the Croydon Comet never looked back, finding a fast rhythm as he rocketed off to his fourth win in as many weeks.
Hagar, strong all night, used his runner-up finish to move to second in the point standings, with Bly claiming the night’s three-spot. Ben Poland, who entered the night second in points, fell victim to someone else’s early-race jingle, finished eighth.
Starting Chris Riendeau up front in the Street Stock feature hardly seemed fair to the rest of the field but, after suffering numerous early season woes, the Ascutney star took full advantage of his new-found Friday fortunes to lead all the way en route to his first win of the summer.
Hometown hot shoe Dave Greenslit won an early-race battle with Max Doliver for the deuce spot and then steadily reeled Riendeau in to set up the best finish of the night. By lap 28, Greenslit was knocking, but Riendeau wasn’t opening the door.
They touched, gently, as they rode the bottom of turn three for the final time, with Greenslit coming up short by less than a car length of victory. Points leader Jimmy Renfrew was third on the night, staying ahead of Greenslit in the points parade. Doliver came home fourth, and Larry Riendeau came all the way from row six to claim the five spot.
Like Riendeau, Pure Stock strongman Kyle Templeton had struggled in early season action. After winning a week ago, the hometown hot shoe proved that his week-three run was no fluke, leading all the way to top Friday’s 20-lapper by a landslide.
Newport’s Jim Carley, strong all night, earned the best-of-the-rest award, holding off rookie powerhouse Bruce Adams for second. Templeton’s heat and feature race wins moved him atop the leader board in the points chase.
In the Six-Shooters, it was all Jeremy Blood again. The hometown racer easily won both his heat and feature to remain perfect on the year. Chris Colburn was second, and Paul Colburn third.
Next Friday, June 7, Claremont Motorsports Park returns to action with a five-division card of racing at the Twin State Valley’s center of speed. The competitors of the Claremont Karting Series will also be on hand to participate in an exhibition event.
The Leader Board
SPORTSMAN MODIFIEDS—Brian Robie, Dana Smith, Todd Patnode, Scott MacMichael, Craig Smith, Dylan Bodreau, Alyssa Rivera, Kenny Thompson.
LATE MODEL SPORTSMEN—Aaron Fellows, Robert Hagar, Ricky Bly, Ryan Bell, Tyler Lescord, Mark Blair, Eric Martell, Ben Poland.
STREET STOCKS—Chris Riendeau, Dave Greenslit, Jimmy Renfrew, Max Doliver, Larry Riendeau, Briana Akusis, Robbie Streeter, Cody Schoolcraft, Raven Streeter, Travis Cass, Jeremy Whitcomb.
PURE STOCKS—Kyle Templeton, Jim Carley, Bruce Adams, Seth Melcher, Chris Carver, Dick Streeter.
SIX-SHOOTERS—Jeremy Blood, Chris Colburn, Paul Colburn.