Helliwell Slips Through in Traffic to Win Chaudiere 200
Wayne Helliwell Jr. took advantage of lapped traffic to slip by Donald Theetge with 11 laps remaining and take his fourth win American-Canadian Tour (ACT) win of the season at Vallée-Jct., QC’s Autodrome Chaudiere on Saturday, September 12.
Dover, NH’s Helliwell had stalked Theetge through traffic after the two got around then-leader Jean-François Déry on lap 169 of the 200-lap event. As the pair approached the lapped car of Etienne Cliche, Theetge looked to pass him on the outside groove. But Cliche drifted high entering turn 3 and Helliwell dove to the bottom, grabbing the lead and driving away for the win in front of the second-largest crowd in track history.
Patrick Hamel got the jump on polesitter Martin Goulet Jr. and lead the first seven laps before Déry took over. Déry built a big lead at times, but six cautions in the first 63 laps tightened the field up and led to Déry and Theetge swapping the lead back and forth on a series of restarts.
The race eventually settled in and went the entire second half caution-free, with Déry, Theetge, Helliwell, and Joey Polewarczyk Jr. breaking away from the field. Déry’s car eventually began to fall off on the long green-flag run, and after multiple attempts to get around him, Theetge finally swung to the outside and grabbed the lead with 31 laps remaining.
Helliwell, who had worked his way up from the 12th starting position, followed him through and the two pulled away as they chased each other through traffic, at one point splitting lapped cars three-wide. But Theetge’s efforts were for naught after Helliwell’s winning move.
Theetge settled for second while Polewarczyk got around Déry in the final laps for third. Dery faded to fourth after leading a race-high 134 laps. Alex Labbé made a late charge to finish fifth. Série ACT point leader Dany Trépanier, Brandon Atkins, Jonathan Bouvrette, Cliche, and Jeff White completed the top-10.
Helliwell unofficially takes the ACT U.S. Tour point lead by 13 over Polewarczyk while Déry’s efforts helped him cut into Trépanier’s Série ACT lead. Both series have just two point-counting events remaining in the 2015 season.
The best of the ACT U.S. and Série ACT will head to New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Saturday, September 26 for the 7th Annual Bond Auto ACT Invitational. Forty-three of the top ACT Late Model racers in the northeast United States and Canada will go 50 green-flag laps on the “Magic Mile” as part of a tripleheader that includes the Camping World Truck Series and Whelen Modified Tour. The Invitational will roll to the grid at approximately 5:00pm.
Pos, Start Pos, Driver, Car #, Hometown, Laps
1. ( 12 ) Wayne Helliwell Jr. ( 27NH ) , Dover, NH , 200 Laps
2. ( 6 ) Donald Theetge ( 80QC ) , Boischatel, QC , 200 Laps
3. ( 13 ) Joey Polewarczyk Jr. ( 97NH ) , Hudson, NH , 200 Laps
4. ( 4 ) Jean-Francois Dery ( 21QC ) , Quebec, QC , 200 Laps
5. ( 7 ) Alex Labbe ( 48QC ) , St-Albert, QC , 200 Laps
6. ( 8 ) Dany Trepanier ( 19QC ) , St-Edouard, QC , 200 Laps
7. ( 11 ) Brandon Atkins ( 4NY ) , AuSable Forks, NY , 200 Laps
8. ( 22 ) Jonathan Bouvrette ( 41QC ) , Blainville, QC , 200 Laps
9. ( 10 ) Etienne Cliché ( 98QC ) , Vallée-Jct., QC , 199 Laps
10. ( 9 ) Jeff White ( 50ME ) , Winthrop, ME , 199 Laps
11. ( 19 ) Jimmy Hebert ( 58VT ) , Williamstown, VT , 199 Laps
12. ( 21 ) Simon Roussin ( 6QC ) , Quebec, QC , 199 Laps
13. ( 2 ) Patrick Hamel ( 51QC ) , St.-Croix, QC , 199 Laps
14. ( 16 ) Emily Packard ( 9ME ) , E. Montpelier, VT , 199 Laps
15. ( 5 ) Patrick Boyer ( 13QC ) , Quebec, QC , 199 Laps
16. ( 17 ) #Rich Dubeau ( 30NH ) , Plainfield, NH , 199 Laps
17. ( 23 ) Kyle Welch ( 9NH ) , Newport, NH , 198 Laps
18. ( 15 ) Patrick Cliché ( 5QC ) , Levis, QC , 198 Laps
19. ( 27 ) Marco Bilodeau ( 75QC ) , Vallée-Jct., QC , 197 Laps
20. ( 24 ) Gaetan Gaudreault ( 38QC ) , Quebec, QC , 197 Laps
21. ( 26 ) Carl Poulin ( 57QC ) , Quebec, QC , 196 Laps
22. ( 3 ) Claude Leclerc ( 11QC ) , Lanoraie, QC , 164 Laps
23. ( 25 ) Charles Harvey ( 77QC ) , Terrebonne, QC , 133 Laps
24. ( 1 ) Martin Goulet Jr. ( 83QC ) , Mascouche, QC , 78 Laps
25. ( 28 ) Gaetan Longtin ( 66QC ) , Mercier, QC , 67 Laps
26. ( 14 ) Brad Babb ( 15NH ) , Windham, ME , 63 Laps
27. ( 18 ) Eric St-Gelais ( 42QC ) , St. Aime-des-Lacs, QC , 45 Laps
28. ( 20 ) Rowland Robinson, Jr. ( 28ME ) , Steuben, ME , 23 Laps
Lap Leaders: Martin Goulet Jr., 0; Patrick Hamel, 1-7; Jean-Francois Dery, 8-37; Hamel, 38; Dery, 39-46; Donald Theetge, 47-51; Dery, 52-64; Theetge, 65-85; Dery, 86-168; Theetge, 169-189; Wayne Helliwell Jr., 190-200. (10 lead changes among 5 drivers)
Time of Race: 1:19:40 Margin of Victory: 0.559 seconds
Cautions: 7 (laps 5, 37, 46, 51, 63, 63, 78)
Heat Winners: Patrick Boyer, Donald Theetge, Alex Labbe, Dany TrepanierConsi Winners: Brad Babb, Jean-Francois Dery