Haley, Ryan Jr. grab first-ever Speedbowl wins- Rheaume cruises to X-Car win- Harkin dominates Bandolero feaurewaterford
WATERFORD — When Colin Haley finished fourth in a Legends race earlier this season at the New London-Waterford Speedbowl, his dad said it felt like a victory, based on all the hard work the race team put in this season.
Haley proved Wednesday he no longer has to settle for moral victories. He took the lead on a restart with Mason Levesque with nine laps remaining to secure his first-ever Speedbowl win, one of the highlights of Wild and Wacky Wednesday at the Speedbowl.
There was also history made in the Super-X cars. Ed Ryan Jr., in only his second Super X-Car feature, took the lead from Jeremy Washburn and Keith Brown early and went on to stroll to his first-ever Speedbowl wins.
Maddie Harkin, in the Bandoleros, and Bill Rheaume, in the X-Cars, also posted wins Wednesday, while Shawn Monahan was the winner in a special 50-lap Mid-Size and Compact Car Enduro.
One of the most breathtaking wins of the night was recorded by Haley, who was running side-by-side Mike Blaskey in a battle for the lead with 10 laps to go. Haley slid in oil dry, which was placed down for a prior incident, however, and went sideways across the track, making contact with Blaskey, who backed into the wall and suffered significant damage.
On the subsequent restart, Haley pulled away from Levesque and was able to nail down the win.
“It was unfortunate what happened to Mike Blaskey, but I got caught in the speedy dry,” Haley said. “But I drove the wheels off this car tonight. I can’t thank enough all the people who helped me.”
Levesque, who finished second, and Scott Limkemann, who finished third, grabbed their first podium finishes of the season.
The turning point of the Super X-Car feature took place early when the top three cars on the starting grid, Aaron Plemons, Bud Kuehne and Mitch Bombard, wound up in the wall on the opening lap.
That gave Ryan the opportunity he needed. He thundered by both Washburn and Brown to surge into the lead on Lap 5 and ran and hid from the rest of the field for the remainder of the race. Dave Yardley, the point leader, finished second and Peter Martin was third.
Bill Rheaume got the early jump on the rest of the field and led for 23 laps to pull down his first X-Car win of the year. Eddie Loomis made things interesting in the second half of the race as he carved his way through the field and moved into second with nine laps to go. He failed to have enough firepower, however, to challenge Rheaume.
Loomis finished second while Chuck McDonald was third, grabbing his first-ever Speedbowl podium.
Harkin, the Bandolero point leader, continued her spectacular season when she grabbed the lead from her teammate, Evan Marchand, and rolled to her fourth win of the season.
Nicolas Hovey was second and Emma Monahan finished third.
The Enduro race came down to the wire. A bump-and-run tactic worked for Monahan as he knocked Victoria Finkbein from the lead and jack-knifed into the lead, holding off John Nunes over the final three laps.
Action resumes at the Speedbowl Saturday with a seven-feature program. The headliner will be the SK Modifieds while the Mini-Stocks will have two 25-lap features. Also in action are the Sportman, the Late Models, the Pro Four Modifieds and the Open Vintage Modifieds.
25-lap Super X-Car” 1. Ed Ryan Jr., Preston; 2. Dave Yardley, Kensington; 3. Peter Martin, Plainville; 4. Donald Berge, Uncasville; 5. Marc Shafer, Groton; 6. Denny Lee Hoffman, Westbrook; 7. Bud Kuehne, Clington; 8. Jeremy Washburn, N/A; 9. Keith Brown, Griswold; 10. Jay Clement, Wethersfield.
25-lap X-Cars: 1. Bill Rheaume, Uncasville; 2. Eddie Loomis, Plainfield; 3. Chuck McDonald, Groton; 4. T.J. Racicot, Quaker Hill; 5. Dylan DeCoster, Waterford; 6. Dave Gargaro Jr., Cranston; 7. Josh Cicio, Seymour; 8. Corey Caddick, Richmond R.I.; 9. Will Rheaume, North Franklin; 10. CP Burdick, Deep River.
25-lap Legends: 1. Colin Haley, Ashford; 2. Mason Levesque, Dighton, Mass.; 3. Scott Limkemann, Lebannon; 4. Peter Bennett, Cromwell; 5. John O’Sullivan, Salem; 6. Sean Fitzmaurice, Woodstock; 7. Dave Lespinasse, Milford; 8. Jessica O’Leary, Warwick, R.I.; 9. Tyler Barry. Griswold; 10. Art Marrero, Baltic.
20-lap Bandolero: 1. Maddie Harkin, Portsmouth, R.I.; 2. Nicolas Hovey, Chaplin; 3. Emma Monahan, Waterford; 4. Tyler Alkas, Berlin; 5. Tyler Tomassi, West Kingston, R.I.; 6. P.J. Evans, Uncasville; 7. Ethan Simmons, Pawcatuck; 8. Ari Jencik, Canton; 9. Teddy Welch, Griswold; 10. Conor Jencik, Canton.
Press release from New London-Waterford Speedbowl
Contact Mike Serluca at MikeS@speedbowlct.com for more information