Contributed by: ACT Staff
Nearly thirty of the northeast’s top stock car racing teams have filed full-season entries for the 2008 American-Canadian Tour Late Model championship series. Drivers from four U.S. states and two Canadian provinces will contest the full 12-race schedule, beginning with the New Hampshire Governor’s Cup 100 at Lee USA Speedway on Sunday, April 20.
Seven-time and defending ACT Late Model Tour Champion Jean-Paul Cyr of Milton, VT heads the list of contenders. Cyr finished on the podium in more than half of the season’s events last year, including each of the first five races. He will be joined by eight of the Top 10 championship finishers, including cross-town rivals Scott Payea, the runner-up, and third-place driver Brent Dragon. Payea earned two victories in 2007, including the Merchants Bank 150 at Barre, VT’s Thunder Road Int’l Speedbowl, while Dragon joined Payea as a winner at White Mountain Motorsports Park in N. Woodstock, NH.
New Hampshire drivers Randy Potter and Joey “Pole” Polewarczyk each earned their first career ACT victories last year on their way finishing fourth and seventh overall, respectively, and will again chase after the title. Québec’s Donald Theetge, Ron Henry of New Gloucester, ME, and 2007 Don MacTavish Award winner Jamie Fisher of Shelburne, VT were also in the Top 10 at season’s end, and return to full-time competition this year.
Other drivers with designs on racing the ACT Late Model Tour this year include former ACT Champions Phil Scott of Middlesex, VT and Brad Leighton of Center Harbor, NH, past winners Scott Dragon, Joey Laquerre, Steve Fisher, Joey Becker, and John Donahue, Maine veterans Leon Heckbert and TD Banknorth 250 runner-up Dale Verrill, Seekonk Speedway veteran Mark Hudson of Norton, MA, young Pete Potvin of Barre, VT, New Smyrna (FL) Speedway winner Eric Chase of Milton, VT, former Lee USA Speedway driver Jimmy Linardy of Malden, MA, and defending Série ACT Castrol Champion and Chittenden Milk Bowl winner Patrick Laperle of St-Denis, QC. The father-son team of Dennis and Trampas Demers will also run for the ACT Owners’ Championship with car owner Charlie Smith.
New faces include four young rookies: Danville, VT’s Tyler Cahoon, 27, of White Mountain Motorsports Park; Thunder Road NAPA Tiger Sportsman Champion Nick Sweet, 23, of Barre, VT; former IRL IndyCar driver Jonathan Urlin, 22, of London, Ontario; and 16 year-old Beech Ridge Motor Speedway standout Joey Doiron of Berwick, ME.
As the ACT Late Model Tour season opens on Sunday, April 20 at Lee USA Speedway, many of the track’s regular weekly competitors are expected to tackle the Tour invaders. Two-time defending Track Champion J.R. Baril is among the early hometown favorites, along with 2004 Champion Ricky Wolf, Jr. Wolf is planning to compete on an extensive basis with the ACT Late Model Tour in 2008 as well.
Following the Lee USA Speedway opener, the American-Canadian Tour travels to Maine’s Oxford Plains Speedway on Saturday, April 26, and then to Thunder Road’s 10th Annual Merchants Bank 150 on Sat./Sun., May 3/4. For more information, call (802) 244-6963 or visit www.acttour.com.