Trevor Sanborn is back in Maine, but he doesn’t expect to spend much time driving race cars this season.

A perennial contender in the Pro Series at Beech Ridge Motor Speedway, Sanborn, 24, spent the first five months of the year working in North Carolina for Race 101, a training program for young race car drivers.

Originally, The plan was for Sanborn to learn as much as he could about setting up race cars and drive Race 101’s new Super Late Model on the short-track racing circuit in North Carolina.

“The experience was fun,” Sanborn said, “but it was difficult to be away from family, and my dad needed help with his business.”

Sanborn, who is from East Parsonsfield, finds himself back in Maine with not much of a budget to race this season.

But Sanborn won’t stay away from the track completely.

He intends to run his own Super Late Model in the four remaining Pro All Star Series North races in Maine — at Beech Ridge Motor Speedway and Oxford Plains Speedway.

“We’ll have a pretty good car in the PASS races at both tracks, and I always run well,” he said. “I think there is more of a payoff in those races, especially if you can finish in the top three.”

If everything works out, Sanborn will return to racing weekly at Beech Ridge next season.

“I’d love to go back to Beech Ridge,” he said. “If I can get everything together, that will be my goal next year to go back and race weekly.” 

CAR COUNTS are expected to increase dramatically in the Pro Series at Beech Ridge, and track owner Andy Cusack has taken a step to make sure the top drivers in the track’s top division have enough time and space to race back to the front.

“We had a solid division last year of 18 to 20 cars, and it’s just picking up this season,” Cusack said. “We’ve got a good seven or eight (more) cars coming into it.”

Normally, a Pro Series feature runs 40 laps, with the top finishers from the previous week starting at the back of the grid. This season, when 21 or more cars start a race, its length will be extended to 45 laps.

“That will give the drivers an extra five laps to get to the front,” Cusack said. “Hopefully, it will prevent needless pushing and shoving and accidents.”

Weekly racing in the Pro Series, Sports Series, Wildcats and Roadrunners starts Saturday night.

Thursday Night Thunder, which includes the track’s entry divisions and the Legend Car series, starts June 14. 

A TOTAL OF 147 cars showed up for opening day Sunday at Oxford Plains Speedway.

“My sense is we’re up from where we were a year ago and things are looking up,” track owner Bill Ryan said. “We had a good crowd, tons of cars, good racing. We couldn’t be more happy with the way it went. It was a great way to start the season.”

Racing resumes Saturday night in the Late Model, Strictly Stocks, Mini Stocks and Outlaw divisions. 

THE AWESOME Auto and Bikefest will be held Sunday at Oxford Plains Speedway.

Judging will be held in 21 classes of cars and motorcycles.

The event runs from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. 

Staff Writer Paul Betit can be contacted at 791-6424 or at:

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Twitter: PaulBetitPPH