Barre, VT — Thunder Road International Speedbowl is ready for yet another strong roster of Rookies at The Road, ready to do battle in all divisions in 2022. As of publishing, the rk Miles Street Stock division is once again at the forefront with six rookies as of late, the Lenny’s Shoe & Apparel Flying Tigers are in close second with five registered rookies and the Maplewood Convenience/Irving Oil Late Models in third with at least two committed rookies for the upcoming season.
After successfully climbing the Thunder Road divisional ladder system in just the last few seasons, both Berlin, Vermont’s Keegan Lamson and Craftsbury Common’s Stephen Martin are ready to tackle their first full season behind the wheel of a Maplewood/Irving Oil Late Model. Both Lamson and Martin are former Street Stock Rookies of the Year, in 2019 and 2017 respectively, and both have taken successful steps in the Flying Tigers in the last several seasons. While Stephen Martin took home the 2019 Flying Tiger Rookie of the Year honors and last year’s Myers Container Service Triple Crown, Keegan Lamson has taken a more outlaw approach, making frequent trips to New Hampshire to gain seat time and experience in both Flying Tigers and Late Models. It’ll be a battle to keep your eyes on all season as Stephen Martin looks to keep his Rookie of the Year streak perfect while Lamson’s experience may prove to be a valuable edge.
In the Lenny’s Shoe and Apparel Flying Tigers, familiar faces meet new foes. Former Street Stock competitor, Danville’s Jacob Roy, is ready to try and tame the Tigers after some downtime while local newcomer Matt Ballard out of Williamstown and New Yorker Cam Gadue prepare to take on a new challenge. But first they’ll have to weather the storm of Thunder Road’s newest star in his familiar yellow and red #18VT, Kaiden Fisher. ‘Tropical Storm’ blew down the rk Miles competition, stealing the 2020 Rookie of the Year honors and last year’s championship, mirroring the success of the aforementioned Stephen Martin. Fisher will be just 14 years old through the majority of the 2022 season and this division of wily veterans is ready to give the young gun all they have down each straightaway and around every corner.
As in years past, the rk Miles Street Stock division leads in registered rookie competitors with six, so far, prepared to start their stock car racing careers on the Barre highbanks. Several of these drivers have started out their rookie campaigns with select trials at the end of the 2021 season. Burnett Scrap Metal Road Warrior veterans Paige Whittemore and Sean McCarthy both got a little seat time towards the end of last season, as well as newcomer Cam Powers who drove to a top 10 finish in his first time behind the wheel. Their limited experience may prove valuable against two other former Warriors, Zachary Audet and Mark Beaulieu. Essex Junction’s Beaulieu scored two wins in the ultra-competitive starting division last season.
These five are all joined by a complete newcomer, the untested Shea Wheeler from Waterbury. Though it certainly won’t be her first time at the track, Shea is the daughter of former Late Model competitor Brett Wheeler and did some testing on the highbanks last summer. Shea is ready to bring back the family name in a division that also boasts the grandson of Vermont legend Joey Laquerre and the daughter of 8-time ACT Late Model Tour champion Brian Hoar. Wheeler, along with Taylor Hoar, Jesse Laquerre and the other Young Guns will battle against hardened rk Miles Street Stock veterans like William Hennequin, Tommy ‘Thunder’ Smith and Jamie Davis throughout the summer.
The 63rd season at Barre, Vermont’s Thunder Road Speedbowl begins on Saturday, April 30 with the annual car show and Pit Stop Competition before open practice for all divisions. On Sunday, May 1 the ACT Late Model Tour comes down the line for the 24th Annual Community Bank N.A. 150 alongside the Lenny’s Shoe & Apparel Flying Tigers, rk Miles Street Stocks and Burnett Scrap Metal Road Warriors. All racing events at Thunder Road are broadcast live and on demand around the world with an annual subscription to FloRacing, on-site camping is available for the weekend.
For more information, contact the Thunder Road offices at (802) 244-6963, media@thunderroadvt.