Contributed by: ACT Staff
Thunder Road International Speedbowl Barre, VT April 29th 2006
Jean-Paul Cyr of Milton, VT started off his season on a rough note. Word in the pits is that fellow competitor Dan Colby spun in the middle of turn 3 and 4 and competitor Eric Williams spun trying to avoid the Colby machine and Cyr had no where to go. The defending tour champion was packed up and headed back to the Milton stables before the first practice even concluded.
Cris Michaud of Williamstown, VT states that regardless of Jean’s incident he (Cyr) will come back to Thunder Road tomorrow as fast as he left today. “Jean has a really great crew; their car will be in top shape on Sunday.” Michaud is a three time defending champion at Thunder Road Speedbowl and the word in the pits is that Michaud has some of the fastest lap times of the day.
Milton, VT native Brent Dragon left the track on Saturday feeling confident. “This is the best my car has ever been at Thunder Road. I am extremely happy. The crew has worked hard on the car all winter and it really shows today. I’m so excited to be back here racing!” Dragon is excited to see some new drivers who have entered the Merchant’s Bank 150. “Drivers like Ben Rowe will have no problem here, although he has only raced at Thunder Road once he has a ton of experience in cars like this, and he has competed at so many different race tracks that he should have no problem adapting to Thunder Road. I’ve raced with Rowe before and take it from me, he’s an awesome driver. He will be tough to beat on Sunday.”
Shelburne, VT’s own Jamie “The Hurricane” Fisher seems to have his race program turned around. Bringing two race cars to the track, Fisher’s focus is on the Merchant’s Bank 150 trophy. “It’s been a long time since I’ve won at Thunder Road it would be a great way to start the season. We built a new car this winter and it seems to be going really well today. The competition is going to be tough tomorrow with Ben Rowe and Patrick Laperle coming, the fans are going to see some great racing on Sunday.”
Older brother Steve Fisher also of Shelburne, VT has a great view, “I am parked between Cris Michaud and Jean-Paul Cyr, the two champions certainly know their way around this race track. I have struggled at Thunder Road in the past however I hope that my luck has changed for 2006”.
Warwick, Rhode Island driver Ryan Vanasse is happy to be back at Thunder Road. In 2005 the #11 truck and trailer got stuck out in the parking lot, due to rainy weather. Today the sun was out, dry ground and 65 degree weather; things were looking up for Vanasse. “The car feels really good; every time I come to Thunder Road I love it even more. It’s great to be back at this track.”
Dave Pembroke of Montpelier, VT thinks Brent Dragon has the car to beat on Sunday. While Pembroke is confident that his ride in the #52 LMS will give Dragon some tough competition he still believes Dragon’s car is the one to beat. “There are so many cars here today. It’s neat to be able to race against Claude Leclerc, I used to watch him race when I was a kid. Brian Hoar is back this weekend and we all know the records he set, it’s going to be fun to race against them on Sunday. I won this race in 2005 and I’d love to repeat in ’06!”
“Fast Freddy” LaGoy of Morrisonville, NY is also glad to be back at Thunder Road. “My car feels really good; I’m excited to get the racing season, what else would I do with my spare time? There are a lot of fast cars here today, I’m glad that I’m getting more seat time here at Thunder Road, the competition is going to be fierce tomorrow. Just another Sunday, racing at the Road.”
Reports from the Roger Brown pit stall is that the clutch broke shortly before the final practice. The team was confident that it would be repaired and as good as new for Sunday. Other competitors suffering a rough day at T-Road include Eric Williams involved in a first practice incident with Dan Colby and Jean-Paul Cyr. Driver Scott Payea also came in on the wrecker, meeting the Widow Maker for the first time in ’06.