After postponement of 24 hours for rain, the Granite State Pro Stock Series finally held its penultimate event of 2019, taking to the asphalt at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park (CT) on Saturday night for their 50-lap portion of the 57th Sunoco World Series of Speedway Racing. The experience-laden field was set by points after a wet Friday, but still provided some movers and free fallers.
Points leader Joey Doiron started on the pole position by the GSPSS rulebook, but was soon overtaken in the opening laps by the second-place points man Ray Christian III, who maneuvered his No. 93 CT to the top spot after just two laps. For the majority of the feature, RC3 held the field at arm’s length, dashing away twice including on the first restart on Lap 14.
Meanwhile, Massachusetts Late Model ace, Eddie MacDonald scrambled up through the field in the first 10 laps after starting in the 13th position, due to Saturday being his second start of the 2019 GSPSS season. After a tangle between Jimmy Renfrew Jr. and Devin O’Connell on Lap 14 helped promote Eddie Mac to third position, the soon dispactched Doiron on the restart for second, but was unable to hang with Christian who pulled away again.
Circumstances soon changed after a pair of yellows on Lap 34 and 35. On the third restart of the race, MacDonald struck, being able to hold the No. 17MA on Thompson’s tricky inside line through the corners. After a number of laps of leaning on each other, along with some possible paint swapping, MacDonald soon gained sole possession of the lead, and held it for the final 10 laps.
While it seemed as though MacDonald had the field on a string the whole time, ‘The Outlaw’ knew full well from his battle with Christian, that his prerace prediction had been true. He was also thankful for some extra help he had received from Pathfinder Chassis throughout the weekend.
“Ray had a fast car, the 93 was real quick. I was worried about him all day, but my guys did an awesome job. I got to thank Joe Wood from Pathfinder for coming up, and spending some time with us, we had a great time,” MacDonald said in victory lane.
It is the second straight World Series win for ‘The Outlaw’, who won the GSPSS event at ‘The Big T’ in 2018 as well. It is the fifth major win for MacDonald at Thompson, collecting trophies in the ACT Late Model Tour, the Pro All Stars Series, and even the NASCAR Busch North Series back in the day.
He couldn’t put a finger on why Thompson suits him, but did say he sure likes racing there.
“I don’t know, I’ve always loved coming to Thompson. So, to be able to get another win here, it’s awesome.”
Ray Christian III held off fellow Connecticut driver Cory Casagrande for second position, RC3 being able to keep his championship aspirations alive after Joey Doiron fell back to finish in the ninth position. Ryan Kuhn and Reid Lanpher rounded the top five.
One more round remains for the Granite State Pro Stock Series in 2019, that will be up in New Hampshire at Claremont Motorsports Park on Sunday, October 20. Those unable to make it out can see the 100-lap feature live on the Speed51 Network.
-Story by: Connor Sullivan, Speed51 Northeast Editor – Twitter: @Connor51CT
-Photo credit: Speed51.com photo
GSPSS Feature - Full Results (Official):
1 17MA Eddie MacDonald
2 93CT Ray Christian III
3 7 Cory Casagrande
4 72 Ryan Kuhn
5 59 Reid Lanpher
6 00 Jimmy Renfrew Jr.
7 21 Josh King
8 43 Devin O'Connell
9 73 Joey Doiron
10 16 Tommy O'Sullivan
11 40 Mike Mitchell
12 39 Nick Lascuola
13 4 Ben Rowe
14 17 Kevin Folan