(Oxford, ME) The NEMST made its way to Oxford Plains Speedway for their first feature event at the legendary facility Saturday Night. An initial gloomy forecast slightly reduced the car count to a strong 25 tour-style minis throughout the pit area. Early on in practice long time Oxford mini stock competitors Justin Larsen and Rob Greenleaf were turning the fast laps around the facility.
Matt Sonnhalter, Justin Larsen, and Toby Wells all won their respective heats with Sonnhalter drawing a 5 row invert for the feature event. After the invert Jimmy Childs and Nick Anderson would lead the field to green for the first time in each drivers NEMST history. The top half of the field was littered with long time fast Oxford competitors and invading NEMST drivers that run within the top five across New England.
The initial start was called off as the car of Childs before the start line and the field was reset for another try. The second try went perfectly and both drivers took off. The inside line quickly moved forward with Anderson falling in line at fifth place. Childs led the pack early with strong competitors fighting to the outside to move around the brand new Mustang. Early on Justin Larsen moved to the outside and held strong for a number of laps before fading to the back of the seven car lead pack. Next, Rob Greenleaf moved high to go around Childs but faded much the same as Larsen.
At the 20 lap mark Matt Sonnhalter moved to the outside of Childs trying to make his move to the front. The two swapped the lead numerous times per lap before Sonnhalter slightly fell back. On lap 27 2014 NEMST Champion Toby Wells pushed Sonnhalter three wide and slid to the outside of Childs. Both cars held strong and Wells was able to complete the pass on lap 29. Wells was able to move away from the seven car lead pack over the next half dozen laps. No other drivers were able to make the outside work around Childs.
An incident on lap 43 brought out the caution for the 07 of Zakartie and 55 of Anderson on the back stretch. Both cars continued and the field was reset for the first restart of the 50 lap feature. Wells and Childs ran even across the start finish line with Wells gaining out of turn 2. Rob Greenleaf stayed to the inside of Childs as Childs fell back on the outside line. Justin Trombley moved into third place and began to chase down the top two competitors and former NEMST Champions.
Wells crossed the line first with Greenleaf holding off Trombley in the battle for second. Larsen and Anderson rounded out the top 5. Childs fell back to 6th after leading 27 laps early on. After victory lane festivities the top were brought into technical inspection and lifted off the ground for full suspension and chassis inspections. Hardware, mounting points, and equipment were all checked and found within NEMST specifications.
The NEMST heads back to southern New England for its next event at Seekonk Speedway for a 40 lap main event on August 15. For more information please like us on Facebook or visit www.northeastministocktour.com.
Environmental Engines Heat Winners: Matt Sonnhalter, Justin Larsen, Toby Wells
Twisted Tea Pole Starter: Jimmy Childs
Thirty Racewear Hard Charger: Loren Smith (+11)
Sunoco Race Fuels Winners Circle Challenge: Toby Wells
Texas Roadhouse Hard Luck Award: Matt Sonnhalter
RH2way Top Rookie: Jimmy Childs (6)
Finish Car No Driver Hometown
1 2NH Toby Wells Dublin, NH
2 2ME Rob Greenleaf West Bath, ME
3 34 Justin Trombley Winter Harbor, ME
4 20 Justin Larsen Peru, ME
5 55 Nicholas Anderson Oxford, MA
6 5 Jimmy Childs Leeds, ME
7 83 brady romano livermore falls, me
8 7 Pete Zakarite Niantic, CT
9 85 Michael Viens Seekonk, MA
10 22W Shaun Waites Jr Raymond, NH
11 90 Desmond Skillings Antrim, NH
12 41 Loren Smith Allenstown, NH
13 24 Joe Baxter Pascoag, RI
14 12 Darrell Moore Oxford, ME
15 10CT Mitchell Bombard Willimantic, CT
16 7 eric pelletier dayville, ct
17 52ME Calvin Rose Turner, ME
18 18NH Jacob Rheaume Rochester, NH
19 33 Matt Sonnhalter E. Thetford, VT
20 43 Dana Shepard Putney, VT
21 25 Nic Skillings Hillsboro, NH
22 84 William Schoeler Warwick, ME
23 66 Devin Miranda Taunton, Ma
24 16 Chris Morris Poland, ME
25 18X Tim Collins Windsor, ME

-NEMST Press Release.  Photo Credit: Speed51.com

 

Wells Battles to Top Spot in Inaugural NEMST Visit to Oxford