Both excitement levels and the entry list are growing for the American-Canadian Tour (ACT) Commonwealth Classic 65 at Virginia’s Richmond Raceway on Saturday, March 30. ACT’s first-ever visit to Richmond is attracting a variety of touring and weekly racing stars eager to be the inaugural winner at the ¾-mile D-shaped oval.
The current entry list is highlighted by two former ACT Late Model Tour champions as well as one of its biggest current standouts. Dover, NH’s Wayne Helliwell Jr., one of the most accomplished drivers in recent ACT Late Model Tour history, recently registered for the event. The three-time Tour champion and former Oxford 250 winner will return to ACT action for the first time in more than two years with his Bernhardt Automotive team.
He’ll be joined by 2016 ACT Champion Nick Sweet of Barre, VT. The multi-time Vermont Milk Bowl winner and Thunder Road Speedbowl Late Model Champion has competed part-time the past two seasons, but will still be an early favorite behind the wheel of the #40VT Mad Dog Motorsports machine.
Williamstown, VT’s Jimmy Hebert is also sure to be a challenger in the 65-lap event. Hebert finished third in ACT Late Model Tour points this past season with two wins. He has been a strong contender at special events in recent years with two runner-up finishes in the ACT Invitational at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Richmond will give him another chance to score a career-defining victory.
Meanwhile, Southern New England will have a strong presence at Richmond. Defending Seekonk Speedway Late Model Champion Ryan Kuhn and Thompson Speedway standout Tom Carey III, both of Massachusetts, have been impressive in limited ACT starts. Two other Seekonk stars, Jake Johnson and Joshua Hedges will also make the trip to Richmond. Rehoboth, MA’s Johnson finished second in Seekonk Pro Stock points this past year at age 16 while New Bedford, MA’s Hedges was the 2018 Sport Trucks Champion.
A number of strong weekly racers are joining the long-distance veterans. Graniteville, VT’s Stephen Donahue, who finished in the top-10 in both Thunder Road and White Mountain Motorsports Park (WMMP) Late Model points in 2018, will make the trip to Virginia. His dad John, a many-time winner at Thunder Road and with ACT, is joining him in the field. Barre, VT’s Jim “Boomer” Morris is coming off a career year in weekly Thunder Road action and hopes to run three times as well on a track three times as long.
The rest of the region will also be well-represented. Lancaster, NH’s Shawn Swallow has joined the fray after running strong in several events this past season. Newmarket, NH’s Bryan Kruczek was the first to enter the event as the multi-time Pro All Stars Series winner will make his debut for Bobby Webber Jr. Racing.
More entries are expected for the inaugural ACT Commonwealth Classic 65 in the coming days. The entry form, the full schedule of events, and other information are available at www.acttour.com. The early entry deadline for the event is January 31. All entries received and/or postmarked after this date will be subject to a $100 late-entry fee.