Saturday June 18 marked the first leg of the Temp Setters Mechanical Contractors Triple Crown which will also run at Speedway 51 on August 6th and back at Oxford Plains on August 28 for the HP Hood 250 weekend. The Texas Roadhouse Mini Stocks flocked through the gates at Oxford alongside the Valenti Modified Racing Series and PASS Modifieds for a night of adrenaline filled racing action. Many new and part time competitors joined the NEMST presented by Twisted Tea for the 2nd Maine event of the 2016 racing season.
Two fields of 10 cars each rolled out to their heats with multi time heat race winner Haywood Herriott leading the way in his respective heat and Matt Sonnhalter holding on over a hard charging Emerson Cayer to win the second heat race. Haywood would draw an invert of 1 row placing the fast cars at the front while leaving himself in the 11th starting position according to series rules regarding current season feature winners.
Around 9:30 PM the 20 car feature event rolled onto the speedway with rookie Jarrod Soucy and veteran and 2-time champion Emerson Cayer to his outside. Sonnhalter and Rheaume would start in the second row. As the green flag waved from flagman and promoter Bob Guptill, Jarrod Soucy broke out to the early lead with the aforementioned 3 drivers taking chase to former Toby Wells machine of Soucy. Early in the race engine troubles struck once again for the Twisted Tea car of Desmond Skillings and he pulled to the infield. Another fast car, Jimmy Childs, that started shotgun on the field was black flagged for heavy smoke early on after making his way towards the top 10.
Soucy continued to lead as Shawn Kimball fought his way into the top five setting Rheaume back to seventh. As the laps ticked on the 88 car of Emerson Cayer would continue to be very loose and unable to hold the bought letting the cars of Sonnhalter and Herriott purse the 42 machine of Soucy. Kimball and Sonnhalter would both experience issues while running in the top 5 and fall out of competition. Rheaume and Viens marched towards the front and alongside the machine of Cayer.
The race would go green to checker with Soucy hanging on for the win and leading every lap with Herriott and Rheaume joining him on the podium. VIens and Cayer would round out the top 5 and join the others in technical inspection. Soucy would earn his first ever NEMST win and become the 23rd different winner in the 70 events held so far in NEMST history.
The NEMST travels back south on July 9 for the first annual Thompson Speedway fan and driver appreciation night for a 20 lap feature event. For additional information please visit our website at www.northeastministocktour.com or our Facebook page.
-North East Mini Stock Tour Press Release
-Photo Credit: NEMST