Oxford, Maine — Tracy Gordon of Strong nailed down his first Super Late Model victory in several years, earning a guaranteed starting spot in the rich Oxford 250 with a 100-lap PASS Open race victory at Oxford Plains Speedway on Sunday night.
Gordon, the 1991 track champion, said “Wayne Helliwell won this race two years ago and then won the 250, and I told my guys before the race that’s what we’re gonna do.”
Gordon, who had great success with the old NASCAR Busch North Series and other touring groups after his championship campaign at OPS, has raced thousands of laps at the Route 26 speedplant in his three-decade-plus racing career – a resume that surely would shine more brightly with a big 250 trophy on it.
Gordon began the 100-lap PASS open race from ninth starting position and did most of his work in impressive fashion from the tough outside groove, seemingly trying to dial in his machine for the big-money 250 coming up on Sunday, August 26.
Runner-up TJ Brackett of Buckfield led about two-thirds of the race. The two-time Super Late Model track champion, and current Saturday night Budweiser Championship Series points leader, was visibly disappointed that he was unable to hold off Gordon. Still, he knows he’ll be in the field for the 250.
Rookie Austin Teras, a 15-year-old racer from Gray with a 50-lap Oxford Plains Speedway Super Late Model victory already under his belt, secured a third and final conditional starting spot, rebounding nicely in the latter stages of the race after being shuffled back in the running order during a mid-race restart.
Lonnie Sommerville of Barnesville, New Brunswick led the first 16 laps of the race and stayed inside the top three until Teras got by with less than five laps to go, relegating the Canadian visitor to a fourth-place finish. Former PASS mods champion Ryan Robbins of Dixfield completed the top-five rundown following a steady drive into contention from 14th starting position.
Connecticut racer Ray Christian III was sixth after starting 18th. Saturday night’s 50-lap winner, Kelly Moore of Scarborough, ended up in seventh position, followed by Turner’s Shawn Martin, Westbrook’s John Peters and John Salemi of Nashua, New Hampshire.
Bruce Helmuth of Wales raced to his first PASS Mods victory of the season in the 40-lap main event for the open-wheel class. Helmuth outgunned rookie Kate Re to grab the early lead, then held off current championship points leader and reigning PASS Mods king Ben Tinker of New Gloucester to claim victory, the second Mod triumph of his career.
Tinker remained atop the PASS Mods rankings with a runner-up finish. Re, a 14-year-old rookie in PASS Mods competition, earned a season-best third-place finish in front of Waterboro’s Billy Dixon and a pair of two-time winners, Gary Shackford of Center Conway, New Hampshire and Poland’s Patrick Sullivan.
Kyle Hewins of Leeds surprised almost no one with his triumph in the 50-lap Enduro race to wrap up the evening’s activities. The winner’s biggest challenge came from big brother and teammate Kurt Hewins, also from Leeds and the runner-up finisher. David Cook raced to a third-place finish, ahead of Josh Knoll and Daryl Quinlan.
The next event at Oxford Plains Speedway features the Oxford Acceleration Series, racing Wednesday night at 7:00 p.m. The Budweiser Championship Series racing card, topped by the ultra-quick Super Late Models, goes to post this Friday night, July 6, at 7:00 p.m. for one week only before returning to its’ regular Saturday night schedule. Oxford Plains Speedway is located at 877 Main Street, on Route 26, in Oxford, Maine. For more information please visit oxfordplains.com or call (207) 539-8865.
Results from the July 1 Pro All Stars Series ‘Open’ event at Oxford Plains Speedway; Oxford, Maine showing finishing position, car number, driver’s name, driver’s hometown:
Super Late Model (100 laps) 1 41 Tracy Gordon, Strong; 2 61 TJ Brackett, Buckfield; 3 29 Austin Teras, Gray; 4 23 Lonnie Sommerville, Barnesville, NB, Canada; 5 36 Ryan Robbins, Dixfield; 6 93 Ray Christian III, Uncasville, CT; 7 47 Kelly Moore, Scarborough; 8 94 Shawn Martin, Turner; 9 51 John Peters, Westbrook; 10 63 John Salemi, Nashua, NH; 11 46 Dennis Spencer, Jr., Oxford; 12 8 Calvin Rose, Jr., Turner; 13 2 Gabe Brown, Center Conway, NH; 14 72 Scott Robbins, Dixfield; 15 60 Timmy Brackett, Buckfield; 16 14 Scot McDaniel, Livermore; 17 39 Chad Dow, Pittsfield; 18 42 Kyle Reid, Fort McMurray, AB, Canada; 19 5x Bobby Therrien, Hinesburg, VT; 20 73 Adam Polvinen, Hebron; 21 10 Kyle DeSouza, Williamston, SC; 22 50 Jeff White, Winthrop; 23 07 Bill Penfold, Oxford.
PASS Mods (40 laps) 1 25 Bruce Helmuth, Wales; 2 19 Ben Tinker, New Gloucester; 3 10 Kate Re, Lovell; 4 33 Billy Dixon, Waterboro; 5 60 Gary Shackford, Center Conway, NH; 6 16 Patrick Sullivan, Poland; 7 85 Jariet Harrison, Freeport; 8 14 Mark Napolitano, North Yarmouth; 9 2 Randy Sanborn, West Baldwin.
-Oxford Plains Speedway Press Release
-Photo credit: Speed51.com