With the big dogs of NASCAR in town, a handful of tracks in New England took this past weekend off from racing festivities. Wiscasset Speedway capitalized on the opportunity and kept the train rolling with an action-packed Group #1 program featuring the Sweatt’s Concrete Thunder 4 Minis, Norm’s Used Cars Pro Stocks, Brackett’s Market 4-Cylinder Pros, Market 27 Super Streets and even the T&L Automotive Enduro Series for the second enduro of the season.
Written by: Amy Harrop – Chasing the Checkered
Nearly 100 competitors filled the pit area on Saturday in hopes to land a spot on the podium. It may have been warm outside, but Possibilities Nutrition kept it cool as they served ice cold beverages on the grandstand side and sponsored the night’s racing program.
The night kicked off with a 25 lap feature from the Thunder 4 Minis. Ricky Austin held the early lead over Derek Cook, but Zach Audet was hard-charging through the field. Audet, who also won one of the two heat races earlier in the evening, took over the top spot on lap 10. The leaders began to navigate lap traffic in the closing laps of the feature but Zach Audet maintained his advantage, picking up his second Thunder 4 Mini win of the season. Shane Webber and Derek Cook rounded out the top 3.
Logan Melcher scored the qualifying heat win in the Pro Stocks, but it was Kelly Moore who took the early lead in the 40-lap Pro Stock feature. Kelly Moore, who is 63 years old, was not only the oldest but the most decorated driver in the Pro Stock field on Saturday. He has become a racing legend in not only Maine but New England as well. The former Busch North driver has a long and successful career spanning over three decades and is a 2021 inductee into the New England Auto Racing Hall of fame and a soon-to-be 2022 inductee into the Maine Motorsports Hall of Fame.
Kelly Moore took off like a rocket from the get-go and held strong after a mid-race caution on lap 18 brought the field back together. He held off Nick Hinkley and a hard-charging Kevin Douglass in the closing laps of the feature, picking up his (surprisingly) first career win at Wiscasset Speedway. The last time Kelly Moore was on the podium at the speedway was back in 1994 when he scored a second place finish. Moore was emotional pulling into Victory Lane following the race and took a moment to gather himself before he emerged from his car, greeting a joyous crowd of cheering fans. Moore got choked up in his Victory Lane speech and celebrated with his family, friends and track owner, Richard Jordan. It’s not very often that you witness a driver like Kelly Moore scoring a career “first” this late into their career, but the fans got to experience it firsthand on Saturday.
The 4-Cylinder Pros followed the Pro Stocks with a 25 lap feature race. Sylas Ripley powered to the early lead but Josh Hall was on his toes, overtaking the lead after an early-race caution for contact between Callahan Cox and Andy Kaherl. Hall took the lead and ran with it, extending his lead to a full straightaway with just 5 laps to go. He held strong through the finish, picking up his fourth win on the season in the division. Josh now ties Ryan Ripley for the most wins in a single division this season. Daniel Harding and Sylas Ripley rounded out the top 3, but Daniel Harding was penalized 3 positions in post-race tech due to a carburetor violation. This moved Sylas Ripley up to second and Callahan Cox into the official top 3.
Jason Oakes took off with the early lead over PJ Merrill in the 30-lap Super Street feature. Heavy hitters Brett Osmond and Bubba Pelton tangled early, collecting Nick Morton and James Goodman in their aftermath. Pelton struggled to find his groove throughout the remainder of the feature and was later caught up in another on-track incident that ultimately retired him from the race, but Brett Osmond fought his way back into the top five as the laps began to wind down.
Point leader Matt Beers ran in the top 5 all day but was met with an unfortunate fate on the final lap of the feature as he collided with Colby Peacock. This turned Beers’ sideways, sending him straight into the turn 1 wall. Beers was able to walk away from the carnage, but was left with a heavily battered race car.
The race was deemed official following the incident and ended under red flag conditions. Per Wiscasset rules, the official finishing order was determined by the drivers’ positions at the conclusion of the last completed green flag lap, minus the drivers that were involved in the caution. Jason Oakes was awarded the win, which is his first win in 3 years in the division. PJ Merrill and Brett Osmond rounded out the podium.
The night concluded with the T&L Automotive Enduro race. 37 drivers joined the fun for an exciting 100-lap feature. Jeff Read was the only driver who successfully completed all 100 laps and ultimately won the feature.
Kelly Moore is undoubtedly a racing legend in his own right, but more legends will be coming out of the woodwork as Wiscasset Speedway introduces their 2022 Hall of Fame class and invites former track champions to join the fun on Saturday, July 23rd for Birthday Night. The night will commemorate Wiscasset Speedway’s 53rd birthday and will feature a full Group #2 racing program with the addition of a fireworks display at the end of the evening.
Please join the fun and celebrate with us! Grandstands open at 4:00 pm and racing will commence at 5:00 pm. As always, grandstand admission is just $5 for adults and free for kids 6 & under.
For more track information, please visit http://www.wiscassetspeedway.