Therrien Bookends ACT Season with Last-Lap Pass for Win
Sweet Claims First Tour Championship in Thompson Finale
Hinesburg, VT’s Bobby Therrien used a last-lap pass of Dillon Moltz to score his second with of the season at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park’s Sunoco World Series of Speedway Racing presented by Xtra Mart on Saturday, October 15, while Nick Sweet captured his first American-Canadian Tour (ACT) Championship with a fifth-place finish in the season finale.
Moltz and Therrien had both gotten around long-time leader Scott Payea with less than 10 laps remaining in the 75-lap event following a lengthy battle. Therrien first poked his nose underneath Moltz with just two laps to go, but the Waterford, CT driver was able to fend off the initial challenge.
As the two exited turn two for the final time, Therrien again looked underneath Moltz. The two then made slight contact as they entered turn three, and Moltz slid up the track just enough for Therrien to scoot by for the win, giving him a bookend on the year after previously triumphing in the season-opener at Oxford Plains Speedway.
Meanwhile, Sweet entered the feature needing a fifth-place finish to assure him of the championship. The Barre, VT veteran worked his way up from the 12th starting position to assume fifth just past the halfway spot, and held off numerous challenges from Eddie MacDonald to remain there the rest of the event. Payea’s late slide to third in the final rundown unofficially gave Sweet the title by 10 points.
Moltz started on the pole after earning a “plus-7” in his qualifying heat and led the first 23 laps. After a series of cautions in the early going, including a five-car tangle in turn one on a lap-23 restart, Payea was able to get the jump on Moltz to take over the point.
Payea, who entered the race 23 points behind Sweet, set sail in an effort to lead the most laps and maximize his point total. But Moltz and Therrien both reeled him back in on the long green flag run, setting up a three car tango for the victory.
Although Payea was able to reestablish a lead when Therrien challenged Moltz for second, his car eventually went away, and Moltz was able to slip inside him with eight laps to go. Therrien followed him through two laps later, setting up the thrilling finish.
Brad Babb was a distant fourth behind the lead trio, followed by Sweet. MacDonald, Alex Labbe, Devin O’Connell, Raymond Christian III, and Rick Gentes rounded out the top-10. O’Connell unofficially claimed the 2016 ACT Tour Rookie of the Year title by two points over Ryan Olsen, who finished 12th. Moltz captured the 2016 ACT New Champions title.
The event concludes the 2016 season for the American-Canadian Tour. The 2016 Banquet of Champions date and the 2017 ACT schedule will be announced in the coming months.
THOMPSON SPEEDWAY MOTORSPORTS PARK
WORLD SERIES 75
Pos Start Pos Driver Car # Hometown Laps
1. ( 8 ) Bobby Therrien ( 5VT ) , Hinesburg, VT , 75 Laps
2. ( 1 ) Dillon Moltz ( 5CT ) , Waterford, CT , 75 Laps
3. ( 5 ) Scott Payea ( 37VT ) , Milton, VT , 75 Laps
4. ( 3 ) Brad Babb ( 15NH ) , Windham, ME , 75 Laps
5. ( 12 ) Nick Sweet ( 40VT ) , Barre, VT , 75 Laps
6. ( 14 ) Eddie MacDonald ( 17MA ) , Rowley, MA , 75 Laps
7. ( 6 ) Alex Labbe ( 48QC ) , St-Albert, QC , 75 Laps
8. ( 4 ) #Devin O'Connell ( 1VT ) , Madison, CT , 75 Laps
9. ( 11 ) Raymond Christian lll ( 93CT ) , Norwich, CT , 75 Laps
10. ( 9 ) Rick Gentes ( 70RI ) , Burrville, RI , 75 Laps
11. ( 23 ) Rowland Robinson, Jr. ( 28ME ) , Steuben, ME , 75 Laps
12. ( 10 ) #Ryan Olsen ( 61NH ) , N. Haverhill, NH , 75 Laps
13. ( 7 ) Ryan Morgan ( 31CT ) , Pawcatuck, CT , 75 Laps
14. ( 13 ) Mike Ziter ( 54VT ) , Barre, VT , 75 Laps
15. ( 24 ) Brian Tagg ( 9MA ) , Oxford, MA , 75 Laps
16. ( 29 ) John Lowinski-Loh ( 7MA ) , Milleville, MA , 75 Laps
17. ( 16 ) Rich Dubeau ( 30NH ) , Lebanon, NH , 75 Laps
18. ( 15 ) Tom Carey III ( 5MA ) , New Salem, MA , 75 Laps
19. ( 21 ) Walter J. Hammond ( 97ME ) , Canaan, NH , 75 Laps
20. ( 27 ) Matthew Lowinski ( 17NC ) , Milford, MA , 74 Laps
21. ( 19 ) #Mark Jenison ( 22RI ) , Warwick, RI , 74 Laps
22. ( 28 ) Ray Parent ( 17RI ) , Tiverton, RI , 74 Laps
23. ( 31 ) James Linardy ( 77MA ) , Somerville, MA , 74 Laps
24. ( 2 ) Walter Sutcliffe ( 78CT ) , East Haven, CT , 74 Laps
25. ( 20 ) Jean-Pierre Ouimet ( 59QC ) , Terrebonne, QC , 74 Laps
26. ( 22 ) Corey Fanning ( 11CT ) , Mapleville, RI , 74 Laps
27. ( 18 ) Larry Gelinas ( 91CT ) , Buxton, ME , 74 Laps
28. ( 30 ) C.J. McLaughlin ( 49NH ) , Framingham, NH , 74 Laps
29. ( 26 ) Josh King ( 21VT ) , Vernon, VT , 73 Laps
30. ( 25 ) Mark Hudson ( 82MA ) , Norton, MA , 34 Laps
31. ( 17 ) William Wall ( 4MA ), Shrewsbury, MA, 23 Laps
Lap Leaders: Dillon Moltz, 1-23; Scott Payea, 24-67; Moltz, 68-74; Bobby Therrien, 75. (3 lead changes among 3 drivers)
Time of Race: 46:10 Margin of Victory: 0.122 seconds
Cautions: 4 (laps 5, 22, 23, 23)
Heat Winners: Nick Sweet, Devin O'Connell, Bobby Therrien