July 4, 2008

Tremont prevails in CJ 101 at the Bowl

WEST HAVEN, VT –  In one of the wildest nights of racing ever witnessed at Devil’s Bowl Speedway, defending track champion Ken Tremont Jr. walked off with $4,000 Friday night after holding off Ronnie Johnson to win the special 4th of July CJ 101 for 358-modifieds.

What made the night especially unique were the constant challenges thrown out by promoter Bruce Richards.

During the pre-feature draw on the front stretch, Richards gave heat-race winners Tremont, Brett Hearn and Ray Hoard a challenge. If one of them started at the rear of the field and went on to win the race, they would pick up a $1,000 bonus. Obviously, all three took the challenge.

Early in the race, all eyes were on Ronnie Johnson. After starting eighth, Johnson, who was the sportsman division champion at the Bowl in 1997, was in the top three after just 10 laps, and then moved up one spot and hung on the rear bumper of leader Frank Hoard Sr., who had started third.

Johnson used a restart on lap 27 to take the lead and now the attention was focused farther back in the field, where Tremont was making his way through traffic.

By the midway point of the race, Tremont had moved into third, behind Johnson and Todd Stone and that group kept the packed house buzzing with some outstanding side-by-side action. After stalking the leader for nearly 20 laps, Tremont finally moved into the top spot on lap 74.

But the surprises weren’t done yet. When a caution came out on lap 82, Richards got on the Raceceiver and offered Johnson a $1,500 bonus if he could regain the lead and get the victory.

When Johnson passed the starter’s stand under caution, he gave a “thumbs-up” toward the control tower and the packed house went nuts when informed of the additional challenge.

Johnson cinched his belts a little tighter and went back to work when green-flag racing resumed, but no matter how hard he tried, Tremont was just as determined to get the victory, and hit the finish line just 0.453 seconds ahead of Johnson, giving the fans a finish they’ll be talking about for a long time.

Stone finished third, points leader Tim Laduc was fourth and Ray Hoard did a great job to come from dead last, after taking the initial challenge, to finish fifth.

Richards had one more surprise up his sleeve. In victory lane after the race, he rewarded Johnson for his hard work with a $500 bonus and a set of GoodYear tires, and also gave a new set of GoodYears to Stone, Laduc and Ray Hoard.

Completing the top 10 were Jimmy Ryan, Dustin Delaney, Gardner Stone, Robert King and Alex Bell.

Hearn, making a rare visit to the Bowl, had a short night, dropping out with mechanical problems after just seven laps.

Frank Hoard III continued to dominate the budget sportsman division, driving to his third victory of the season. Despite starting ninth, Hoard charged into the lead midway through the 20-lap feature and was over two seconds ahead of runner-up Don Miller at the finish. They were followed by Scott Duell, Kevin Chaffee and Mike Visconti.

Carl Vladyka held off Jeff Washburn to come away with his fourth win of the year in the pro-street stock division, Joey Trudeau picked up his third win of the season in the limited division and Erwin Smith Jr. took the checkered flag in the Duke stock division.

CJ 101: KEN TREMONT JR., Ronnie Johnson, Todd Stone, Tim Laduc, Ray Hoard, Jimmy Ryan, Dustin Delaney, Gardner Stone, Robert King, Alex Bell, Keith Flach, Don Ackner, Kris Vernold, Frank Hoard Sr., Matt Depew, Brian Whittemore, Gene Munger, Joey Williams, Matt DeLorenzo, Vince Quenneville Jr., Robert Allen, Jack Johnson, Rob Langevin, Don Mattison, Ray Martindale, Ron Proctor, Brett Hearn.

BUDGET SPORTSMAN: FRANK HOARD III, Don Miller, Scott Duell, Kevin Chaffee, Mike Visconti, D.J. Brundige, Chuck Dickinson, Jon Bates, Gary Siemons, Chris Allen, C.V. Elms, Tom Lilly, Seth Howe, Frank Hoard Jr., Ron Wanamaker, Tim Anagnos, Jared McMahon, Billy Lussier, Jeremy Dygert.

PRO-STREET STOCKS: CARL VLADYKA, Jeff Washburn, Chuck Towslee, Lori Langevin, Josh Joseph, Mike Paquin, Patrick McLaughlin, Tommy Primeau, Chris Fitzgerald, Mike Bussino, Ed Thompson, Justin Perry, David Wood. DQ: Fred Little.

LIMITEDS: JOEY TRUDEAU, Bill Duprey, Adam Forbes, Bill Vradenburg, C.J. Vitagliano, Joe Ladd, Kevin Elliott, Justin Parker, Jeremy Jones, Russ Farr, Bill Decker, Dan Carlton.