By Gary Dutton
CLAREMONT, N.H. – For a while Friday night you could easily see Mt. Ascutney, the majestic Vermont spire looking down from high above turn two of Claremont Motorsports Park.
And then it was gone. Not long after Six Shooter speedster Robert Shaw had won his first feature event of the summer, the mountain went away. With rain then sweeping in from the west, Friday’s event at the storied third-mile was halted after six heat races and the Six Shooter feature had been completed.
More than 40 Pure Stocks were in the pits to vie for starting spots in the night’s scheduled Cody LaFont triple 20s. But, after making every effort possible to get this one in, CMP promoter Mike Parks was forced to pull the plug.
Pre-race showers had dampened the racing surface, but Seth Melcher, Amy Jaycox, Chris Riendeau, and a host of others had taken to the track to make it again race-ready. But when the rain came again, the show was done.
The Six Shooter 20-lapper went green-to-checkers in rapid-fire fashion after a lap-one jingle reshaped the field. Two cars danced the opening lap oh-oh in turn three, collecting three others in the process, including division strongman Dustin Thibodeau, who’d entered Friday’s event undefeated on the year.
And, while no fewer than five cars were involved in the bump-and-run, all kept going without causing the caution to be waved. Thibodeau, though, drove away worse-for-wear, while Shaw took off like a rocket.
With Thibodeau heading pitside on lap seven, Shaw ran roughshod over the rest of the field. Mark Laroche Jr. got up for second on lap 12, and Chooch Snide – powering into third with two to go- came home third.
Twenty Pure Stocks had qualified for the 24-car LaFont Memorial field, with the final four starting slots to be decided by consolation races before the triple-20 event is contested on June 18.
MAY 28 SIX SHOOTER FINISH: Robert Shaw, Marc Laroche Jr., Chooch Snide, Bucky Thibodeau, Xander Stillwell, Lucas Bernatchy, Dustin Thibodeau.
By Gary Dutton
CLAREMONT, N.H.- Claremont Motorsports Park will celebrate the unofficial beginning of summer this weekend with two big programs of oval track racing.
The storied third-mile speedplant will kick off its ambitious Memorial Day Weekend schedule on Friday, May 28, when adults will be welcomed into the grandstands for just five bucks as CMP promoter Mike Parks opens the doors on Fan Appreciation Day, with five divisions of racers going to the post.
One of the highlights of Friday’s event will be the running of the Cody LaFont Memorial Race, a triple-20 formatted Pure Stock annual event.
Joey Jarvis, a two-time winner already this year, won last season’s LaFont Memorial Race. Jarvis, along with Windsor Wonder Kodi Sabins and rookie sensation Dylan Zullo – three runner-ups and a win in four races - will all be on hand Friday, hoping to qualify for the big dance, no easy chore with upwards of 35 teams on hand.
On Sunday, May 30, the exciting Granite State Pro Stock Series thunders into town for 100 laps of ground-pounding action. The NHSTRA Modifieds will square off in twin 35-lap Quest For The Cup features, with added-purse runs by the Mini Stocks, Pure Stocks and Six Shooters on tap as well.
The NELCAR Legends will also be in town Sunday and the huge event will close with another round of fan-favorite four-cylinder Enduro warfare. Senior – 65-plus – admission will be discounted. Post time for Sunday’s event is 4 p.m.
Photos by Miss Em's Photography Adventures
By Gary Dutton
CLAREMONT, N.H.- Cody Schoolcraft and Dylan Zullo each earned his first victory lap of the season Friday, May 21, at Claremont Motorsports Park, while Haydon Grenier stayed red hot en route to his third 2021 victory and Dustin Thibodeau remained perfect on the year.
Second-generation slideways hot shoe Tanner Siemons scored the win as the visiting 602 Dirt Modifieds made their first CMP visit of the summer on Friday. And, with no fewer than 38 Pure Stocks packing the pits, promoter Mike Parks authored another “B” feature for the non-quals, with Amy Jaycox victorious in the nightcap 12-lapper.
There was plenty of side-by-side action Friday at the storied Thrasher Road speedplant – the Pure Stocks even went four-wide once – and battles for the lead were plenty. Somehow, though, while rubs and love taps were commonplace, four of the night’s five feature events sailed by caution-free.
Trevor Rocke and Cody Schoolcraft led the R.E. Hinkley Street Stocks to the green, with Schoolcraft jumping all over the opening lead and never looking back. Division superstar Dave Greenslit got up for second on lap 12 and then closed Schoolcraft’s lead from a full straight to a couple lengths but, on this night, could progress no farther.
With Schoolcraft rock solid in winning his first of the season. Greenslit and Joe Tetreault completed the top three. Rocke finished his strong night’s outing in fourth, with Briana Akusis coming home fifth after earlier topping her heat race.
Second-generation hot shoe Dylan Zullo came into Friday’s Pure Stock 25-lapper with three runner-up finishes in three races already notched on his impressive rookie record. Friday, he added victory number one to that list.
Zullo sat in row eight when Friday’s 25-lap LaValley Building Supply Pure Stock feature went green. Joey Jarvis fired from row ten.
Drake Nelson led early, then Seth Melcher, as Zullo and Jarvis stormed steadily to the front. Zullo took control on lap 14, with Jarvis grabbing second two circuits later, hoping for his third win of the young season. Zullo, though, had big plans of his own.
Jarvis had one chance on a late-race restart, but the rookie had him covered. With the Ascutney, VT veteran strong in second, Nick Houle ended his bad luck streak by earning the night’s third-place hardware.
Grenier was convincing in storming to his third In City Sugar Shack Mini Stock win. Taking the lead from Nick Skillings on lap 14, he then romped to victory. Skillings was second, with Matt Sonnhalter smooth in third.
Four heat races, four main events; Six Shooter Dustin Thibodeau is still perfect this year. Friday, he took the lead from Robert Shaw on lap eight and quickly drove away. Shaw was second again, and Bucky Thibodeau came in third.
Tanner Siemons led all the way in the Dirt Mod 25-lapper. Vince Quenneville looked high, low, and in between for a path to the front but had to settle for second. Orwell, VT’s Tim LaDuc came home third.
Amy Jaycox earned her first checkered flag lap in the Pure Stock “B” feature, winning the 12-lapper with ease. Todd Smith, who’d done some off-road racing earlier in the night, finished second.
Next weekend, Claremont Motorsports Park will host two huge oval track events.
On Friday, May 28, it’s Fan Appreciation Night, with adult admission only five bucks. The Pure Stocks will contest triple 20-lap features in the annual Cody LaFont Memorial event. On Sunday, May 30, the Granite State Pro Stock Series comes to town for an action-packed 100-lap main event.
For more information on these and all other CMP events, please visit www.claremontmotorsportspark.com.
CLAREMONT MOTORSPORTS PARK MAY 21 TOP TENS:
STREET STOCK: Cody Schoolcraft, Dave Greenslit, Joe Tetreault, Trevor Rocke, Briana Akusis, Robert Hagar, Jack McClay, Jesse Emerson, Ryan Christian, Kayleigh Eastman.
MNI STOCK: Haydon Grenier, Nick Skillings, Matt Sonnhalter, Desmond Skillings, Cale Skillings, David Pratt III, Ryan Carman, Mason Prouty, Joe Olmstead, Ray King.
PURE STOCK “A”: Dylan Zullo, Joey Jarvis, Nick Houle, Josh Rondeau, Craig Smith, Zach Richardson, Kyle Templeton, JD Stockwell, Seth Melcher, Carlos Grenier.
SIX SHOOTER: Dustin Thibodeau, Robert Shaw, Bucky Thibodeau, John Thibodeau, Leon Keniston, Lucas Bernatchy, Xander Stillwell, Marc Laroche, Jessica Michaud, Jeremy Blood.
602 DIRT MODIFIED: Tanner Siemons, Vince Quenneville, Tim LaDuc, Brent Warren, Matt Lashua, Todd Buckwold, Sean Bodreau, Ryan Christian.
PURE STOCK “B”: Amy Jaycox, Todd Smith, Jake Michaud, Sam Giveen, Jordan Keefe, Spencer Willette, Jeremy Whitcomb.
Photos courtesy of Miss Em's Photography Adventures
By Gary Dutton
CLAREMONT, N.H. – Andrew Martell would not have been heavily favored to dominate in two Modified features Friday at Claremont Motorsports Park. He had never earned a Modified victory lap and, in fact, hadn’t won anything in more than seven years.
Friday, though, except for one big move from veteran wheelsman Todd Patnode, Martell would have swept the 35-lap twinbill. After dominating the opening feature to end his long victory drought, Martell finished in Patnode’s shadow in the nightcap, adding that runner-up showing to his earlier romp.
Martell led all the way in the first go-round, took the lead from Brad Zahensky in the nightcap, and then followed Patnode into victory lane. Geoff Rollins had a strong night of his own, finishing second and third, while Brian Robie was third in the opener.
With Matt Kimball, coming home fourth twice on Friday, having scored the opening night win back on April 25, there have now been three different winners in three NHSTRA Modified feature events this season at the Thrasher Road speedplant.
Trevor Rocke set the early pace in the Street Stock main, giving way to storming Robert Hagar on lap five. Defending track king Dave Greenslit fired into the lead four laps later and, with two-for-two Jimmy Renfrew Jr. not in the house Friday, stormed to his first win of the summer.
Hagar held strong to finish at Greenslit’s bumper, with strong and steady Chris Riendeau coming home third. Hagar and Riendeau won the night’s qualifying races.
With 34 Pure Stocks in the house, a full field took the green in the night’s A main. Joey Jarvis took the lead after two late-race restarts, powering to his second win of the young season, just ahead of rising star Dylan Zullo, who posted his third strong runner-up finish in a row. Carlos Grenier was solid in third.
With so many Pures on hand, speedway promoter Mike Parks gave everyone a chance to race, calling for a nightcap B feature. Andrea St. Amour was victorious in that one, leading Nick Little and Lenny Sheppard under the checkers.
Teen hot shoe Haydon Grenier fired low through turn three of the Mini Stock feature, taking the lap 19 lead from Kodi Sabins and then rocketed off to his second win of the summer. Sabins, potent all race, came home second, with 2020 track champ Desmond Skillings picking up the bronze.
Dustin Thibodeau continued his complete dominance of the Six Shooters on Friday. The reigning track champion took the lead from Robert Shaw on lap six of the novice feature and simply drove away.
It was Thibodeau’s third win of the season at CMP and his fourth overall this season, keeping him undefeated as he defends his 2020 crown. Shaw was, again, second on the night, with Bucky Thibodeau coming home third.
Ben Poland raced to victory over a small field of Late Model Sportsmen, becoming the division’s third different winner this season. Week two winner Ricky Bly was second on the night, with Ryan Bell third.
Next Friday, May 21, Claremont Motorsports Park will welcome the 602 Dirt Modifieds in for their first visit of the season. The weekly racing series Street Stocks, Pure Stocks, Mini Stocks, and Six Shooters will all be in action too.
For more information, please visit www.claremontmotorsportspark.com.
CLAREMONT MOTORSPORTS PARK MAY 14 TOP TENS:
FIRST MODIFIED 35-LAP: Andrew Martell, Geoff Rollins, Brian Robie, Matt Kimball, Todd Patnode, George Helliwell, Cole Littlewood, John Studley, Craig Smith, Brad Zahensky.
SECOND MODIFIED 35-LAP: Todd Patnode, Andrew Martell, Geoff Rollins, Matt Kimball, Brian Robie, Walt Hammond, Cole Littlewood, Brad Zahensky, Craig Smith, Zach Leone.
STREET STOCK: Dave Greenslit, Robert Hagar, Chris Riendeau, Joe Tetreault, Jack McClay, Briana Akusis, Jason Kozacka, Jeremy Zullo, Trevor Rocke, Scott Wade.
MINI STOCK: Haydon Grenier, Kodi Sabins, Desmond Skillings, Cale Skillings, Joe Olmstead, Ray King, Ryan Carman, Dave Thibodeau, Mason Prouty, David Pratt.
PURE STOCK “A” FEATURE: Joey Jarvis, Dylan Zullo, Carlos Grenier, Bruce Jaycox, Zach Richardson, Nick Houle, Nolan McClay, Travis Sykes, JD Stockwell, Nick Shepard.
SIX SHOOTER: Dustin Thibodeau, Robert Shaw, Bucky Thibodeau, Chooch Snide, Xander Stillwell, Lucas Bernatchy.
PURE STOCK “B” FEATURE: Andrea St. Amour, Nick Little, Lenny Sheppard, Richard Streeter, Bryanna Cook, Spencer Willette, Hailey LcClair.
By Gary Dutton
CLAREMONT, N.H. Two Modified features will highlight this Friday, May14, night’s NHSTRA racing event at Claremont Motorsports Park. The Mod twinbill will be supported by five other weekly racing series divisions and a special Cone Race Madness event.
The Mod Squad was scheduled to compete twice on the Thrasher Road speedplant’s April 25 opening night card. Young star Matt Kimball edged Brian Robie and Todd Patnode in the opening 35-lapper but, when rain swept the nightcap away, track promoter Mike Parks quickly rescheduled it for this week.
The powerful open-wheelers have already qualified for the starting lineup of Friday’s first battle and will then requalify for the the second. 35-lapper.
The Street Stocks, dominated twice so far by Candia’s Jimmy Renfrew Jr., will also be in action Friday, along with the Late Model Sportsmen, with both Dallas Trombley and Ricky Bly owning 2021 wins, and the Mini Stocks, Pure Stocks and Six Shooters.
Admission is affordable at family-friendly Claremont Motorsports Park. Adult tickets are $15, with senior citizens entering for only $10, and kids 6-12 for $5. Post time at CMP is 7 p.m. every Friday.
By Gary Dutton
CLAREMONT, N.H. – Teen star Jimmy Renfrew Jr. stayed perfect on the young season Friday, May 7, topping a deep and talented Street Stock field to duplicate his opening day victory of two weeks earlier.
Sunapee speedster Ricky Bly was victorious in the Late Model Sportsman feature, while four-cylinder king Kodi Sabins rocketed to victory over a 24-car field in the Pure Stocks.
Desmond Skillings picked up where he’d left off last autumn, topping Friday night’s Mini Stock main, and 2020 Six Shooter champ Dustin Thibodear, like Renfrew, won his second race of the season.
Cody Schoolcraft led the thundering pack of 17 R.E. Hinkley Street Stocks to the green, but it was Renfrew, firing from row two, who shot low along the backchute to grab the opening lap lead and then never look back.
Over the first 28 laps, Renfrew was able to open huge leads, with Schoolcraft holding the deuce over an all-star field. Chris Riendeau, strong and steady all day, was able to claim second with two to go, with reigning track champion Dave Greenslit completing his charge from scratch on the opening grid to earn the third-place hardware.
With 33 LaValley Building Supply Pure Stocks jamming the pits in hope of earning a spot into the night’s big dance, Nick Houle would earn the pole for Friday’s 25-lap main event. Opening day winner Joey Jarvis was not on hand.
Houle jumped all over the opening lead, but firing low through the west-end turns, Sabins took control on lap six. The only caution of the event fell on lap 15, when Houle was dumped by a lapper while running strong in second.
Houle’s demise moved Seth Melcher and teen hot shoe Dylan Zullo up to battle for second, with Zullo holding the deuce over the final nine go-rounds to score his second runner-up finish of the young season. Travis Sykes was impressive in third, with Houle charging back through the field to recover for fifth, just behind Kyle Templeton.
Former two-time Route 103 Auto LMS champ Ricky Bly led all the way in Friday’s 30-lapper but had strong competition racing in his shadow most of the way, as Dallas Trombley and Ben Poland went to war just behind him.
Trombley, the opening night winner, while dancing alongside Bly, found the top of turn two too narrow for his liking on lap 18, with Poland then dogging Bly the rest of the way to claim second. Steady Tyler Lescord came home third on the night.
Defending In City Sugar Shack Mini Stock champion Desmond Skillings led all 25 laps of Friday’s feature, holding off the all-out challenges of Haydon Grenier to notch the win. Ray King, firing from row three, came home third.
Dustin Thibodeau started up front in the Avery Insurance Six Shooter feature and blew the field away en route to his second 2021 victory. Robert Shaw claimed best-of-the-rest honors to earn the runner-up trophy, and John Thibodeau came home third.
Jessie Webster had the hot hand in the first round of 2021 Spectator Racing at the Thrasher Road speedplant. Webster topped a field of eight street-legal competitors in the night’s ten-lapper.
Claremont Motorsports Park will return to action next Friday, May 14, when the third-mile speedplant will present a full card of NHSTRA action, including two 35-lap Modified features. For more info, please visit www.claremontmotorsportspark.com.
CLAREMONT MOTORSPORTS PARK MAY 7 TOP TENS:
STREET STOCK: Jimmy Renfrew Jr., Chris Riendeau, Dave Greenslit, Cody Schoolcraft, Joe Tetreault, Jeremy Zullo, Briana Akusis, Matt Sonnhalter, Robert Hagar, Jack McClay.
LATE MODEL SPORTSMAN: Ricky Bly, Ben Poland, Tyler Lescord, Ryan Bell, Chris Jackman, Dallas Trombley, Matt Winter, Scott Boisvert, Ben Lambert.
MINI STOCK: Desmond Skillings, Haydon Grenier, Ray King, Cale Skillings, Dave Thibodeau, Eric Lanou, Daniel Young, Dave Pratt III, Kodi Sabins, Nick Skillings.
PURE STOCK: Kodi Sabins, Dylan Zullo, Travis Sykes, Kyle Templeton, Nick Houle, Seth Melcher, Andrea St. Amour, Chris Carver, Amy Jaycox, Doug Nelson.
SIX SHOOTER: Dustin Thibodeau, Robert Shaw, John Thibodeau, Bucky Thibodeau, Jeremy Blood, Xander Emerson, Paul Colburn, Lucas Bernatchy, Ray Luce.
Photo Credit: Emily Miller, Miss Em's Photography Adventures
By Gary Dutton
CLAREMONT, N.H. – Only a week into its 2021 racing season, Claremont Motorsports Park was silenced by rain Friday, April 30, as off-and-on showers forced cancellation of the asphalt oval’s scheduled five-division event.
The entire event will be green-flagged next Friday, May 7, including the Spectator Race competition that was part of Friday’s weather-postponed card.
Candia, N.H.’s Jimmy Renfrew Jr. will be gunning for two wins in a row Friday in the exciting R.E. Hinkley Street Stock division, in which he held off 2020 titlist Dave Greenslit and former speedway champ Jack McClay to score the opening day victory.
Crafty veteran Joey Jarvis will be hoping to duplicate his LaValley Building Supply Pure Stock win, with young gun Dylan Zullo blasting to improve his strong runner-up performance of week one. In the LMS division, now wide open with superman Aaron Fellows having moved to the Modifieds, Dallas Trombley will be looking for his second romp of the young year.
Hometown hot shoe Haydon Grenier topped the Mini Stocks on April 25; with 2020 Six Shooter king Dustin Thibodeau running roughshod over the opening day field. Both will be gunning to stay undefeated when they return to action May 7.
NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Racing Series events go green every Friday at 7 p.m. at the third-mile Thrasher Road speedplant.