Rowley, MA’s Eddie MacDonald held off Williamstown, VT’s Jimmy Hebert in the closing laps to take the Summer Showdown Series opener at Maine’s Oxford Plains Speedway on Sunday, May 20. The win made MacDonald $5,000 richer and also makes him eligible for an additional $5,000 bonus should he go on to sweep the 3-race series.
MacDonald seemed to have the race in hand after taking the lead from Barre, VT’s Nick Sweet using a 3-wide move in lapped traffic just past the halfway point of the 150-lap event. But a pair of lap-132 cautions allowed both Sweet and Hebert to close back in.
Hebert got underneath Sweet for second with just over 10 laps to go and had MacDonald in his sights. But Hebert slipped just a little bit in turn 1 with five laps remaining, allowing “The Outlaw” to scoot away just enough for the win.
Sweet ran away with the lead in the early going and looked strong in his own bid to capture the $5,000 top prize. But racing was tight throughout the 30-car field, creating huge packs putting up spirited fights for position. Those packs enabled MacDonald to close back to Sweet’s bumper on multiple occasions.
Sweet was able to get away from MacDonald the first two times they had cleared traffic. When Sweet went to the outside of Matt White on the backstretch on lap 77, MacDonald made his move. He dove to the inside of White and made it 3-deep entering turn 3, emerging with the lead at the line.
Despite a return bid from Sweet several laps later, MacDonald began pulling away until Christopher Pelkey spun in turn 2 to bring out the first caution on lap 132. Defending ACT Champion Scott Payea went for his own turn-2 spin on the restart, bringing out the yellow again and setting up the final sprint to the checkered flag.
Hebert ended up second with Sweet third. Corey Mason took fourth. Payea recovered from his spin to finish fifth, the final car on the lead lap. Bobby Therrien, Miles Chipman, Mike Ziter, Rich Dubeau, and Chip Grenier rounded out the top-10.
The American-Canadian Tour will next be in action at Groveton, NH’s Speedway 51 on Saturday, June 2 for the Caron Fabrication 151. Post time is 6:00pm.
OXFORD 150 – SUMMER SHOWDOWN SERIES EVENT #1
Pos, Start Pos, Driver, Car #, Hometown, Laps
1. ( 2 ) Eddie MacDonald ( 17MA ) , Rowley, MA , 150 Laps
2. ( 4 ) Jimmy Hebert ( 58VT ) , Williamstown, VT , 150 Laps
3. ( 1 ) Nicholas Sweet ( 88VT ) , Barre, VT , 150 Laps
4. ( 8 ) Corey Mason ( 1NH ) , Groveton, NH , 150 Laps
5. ( 10 ) Scott Payea ( 37VT ) , Colchester, VT , 150 Laps
6. ( 17 ) Bobby Therrien ( 5VT ) , Hinesburg, VT , 149 Laps
7. ( 12 ) Miles Chipman ( 0NH ) , Nottingham, NH , 149 Laps
8. ( 9 ) Mike Ziter ( 54VT ) , Barre, VT , 149 Laps
9. ( 5 ) Rich Dubeau ( 30NH ) , Lebanon, NH , 149 Laps
10. ( 15 ) Chip Grenier ( 9VT ) , Graniteville, VT , 149 Laps
11. ( 6 ) Rowland Robinson Jr. ( 28ME ) , Steuben, ME , 149 Laps
12. ( 3 ) Ryan Kuhn ( 72MA ) , East Bridgewater, MA , 149 Laps
13. ( 14 ) #Evan Hallstrom ( 1VT ) , Northfield, VT , 149 Laps
14. ( 16 ) Quinten Welch ( 78NH ) , Groveton, NH , 148 Laps
15. ( 7 ) Ryan Olsen ( 61NH ) , Woodsville, NH , 148 Laps
16. ( 18 ) Brian Tagg ( 9MA ) , Oxford, MA , 148 Laps
17. ( 24 ) Bryan Mason ( 10NH ) , Stark, NH , 148 Laps
18. ( 13 ) Joey Laquerre ( 15VT ) , E. Montpelier, VT , 148 Laps
19. ( 26 ) Adam Gray ( 97MA ) , Granby, MA , 148 Laps
20. ( 11 ) Claude Leclerc ( 11QC ) , Lanoraie, QC , 148 Laps
21. ( 21 ) Matt White ( 42VT ) , Northfield, VT , 148 Laps
22. ( 19 ) Jean-Francois Dery ( 21QC ) , Quebec, QC , 148 Laps
23. ( 28 ) #Dylan Payea ( 7NH ) , Milton, VT , 147 Laps
24. ( 22 ) Mike Kension ( 3NH ) , Lancaster, NH , 147 Laps
25. ( 20 ) #Christopher Pelkey ( 41VT ) , South Barre, VT , 147 Laps
26. ( 25 ) James Linardy ( 77MA ) , Somerville, MA , 147 Laps
27. ( 23 ) Matt Anderson ( 49NH ) , Franklin, NH , 146 Laps
28. ( 27 ) #T.J. Moreshead ( 00MA ) , Seekonk, MA , 146 Laps
29. ( 30 ) #Reilly Lanphear ( 21VT ) , Duxbury, VT , 16 Laps
30. ( 29 ) #Peyton Lanphear ( 22VT ) , Duxbury, VT , 9 Laps
Lap Leaders: Nick Sweet 1-76, Eddie MacDonald 77-150. (1 lead changes among 2 drivers)
Time of Race: 54:17 Margin of Victory: 0.320 seconds
Cautions: 2 (laps 132, 132)
Heat Winners: Corey Mason, Mike Ziter, Claude Leclerc
Consi Winner: Ryan Olsen