WISCASSET

Last Saturday’s race was all about suspense and surprises, and not just because the Enduros were in town.

First, all four regular division races were won by drivers earning their first win of the season. Second, all four division champions secured their titles with a top three victory lane finish.

Even with the 2016 season winding down, it’s not shocking that the grandstands at Wiscasset Speedway remain full week after week — like a box of chocolates, you never know what you might get.

Zac Poland wasted no time driving the Super Streets 35- Lap Spotlight Race into high gear, as he took the lead before the first lap was over. Sean Johnson moved up to take the lead in lap four, while behind a side-by-side battle waged for the third and sixth positions. Cody Buzzell freed himself from the back half of the pack in lap seven, while the current division points leader, Mark Lucas, moved with signature stealth into fourth. As he lost the green-flag-momentum, Poland fell behind Lucas and was sandwiched momentarily between the two division leaders — Lucas at his front bumper and Josh Bailey at his rear bumper. Bailey was focused on Lucas, who stood between him and the division championship, and had acknowledged during practice that Lucas is “a hard man to beat!”

The halfway mark came, and with it an impressive lead by Johnson, who maintained comfortable margins between himself and the rest of the top five. In an unexpected twist, Bailey spun into the infield during lap 25, which set off a chain reaction shuffle to the top three. Oakes overtook Johnson on lap 32 and ultimately held the lead through the checkered flag for the win and a career-best finish. Also to earn their first trips to victory lane was Johnson in second, with third place going to the unofficial division champion, Lucas.

The New England 4-Cylinder Prostocks fanned out three-wide to start its 25-lap feature race. Jamie Wright snatched an early lead, as he worked to earn his first win before the season’s end. Despite Wright’s full-straightaway lead, current points leader and unofficial division champion, Kamren Knowles, had 25 laps to close the evershrinking gap from his seat in second. Jeff Prindall held third at the halfway point without much competition from behind, as the top three drivers spaced widely throughout the front of the field.

David Greenleaf and Devan Robinson tangoed through traffic at the start of the Thunder 4 Minis’ 20-lap feature race, which left Robinson upside down at the top of turn two. Several laps later, Tristan Shea sat in the lead, while Spencer Sweatt worked to dominate from behind. Sweatt took a short-lived lead on lap eight, only to have it taken back by Shea mere moments later. Michael Harrison, the unofficial division champion, held solid in third position until the two course leaders spun at the top of turn three.

When the dust settled, Logan Melcher stood in first, with Harrison in second and Curtis Anderson in third. Shea was third to cross the finish line in what would have been a career best finish but, in his excitement, made the rookie mistake of forgetting to immediately go to post-race inspection. This error is common and unfortunately, resulted in Shea’s disqualification.

The 40-lap ServPro of Biddeford/ Saco Prostocks had a rough start, with Mike Orr and Thomas True spinning out of turn four. To the delight of fans, Orr elected to employ the-always-encouraged-butrarely utilized gentleman’s rule, which sent him to the back of the pack. Back in the action, the tension raged in a side-by-side battle for first between Bobby Nadeau and Charlie Colby, as both pushed closer to 90 miles-per-hour. Colby got out in front, but Nadeau refused to go out that easy. Behind them, Brandon Sprague and Nick Hinckley kept each other on their toes for third, while the current division points leader, Andy Saunders rounded out the top five.

With eight laps to go, David Farrington passed Nadeau for second only to be slowed by a brief caution when Nate Tribbet spun to the infield on the back stretch. Following the green flag, Saunders and Farrington battled behind Colby for second. Farrington continued to go high with one lap to go, passing Colby for first place at the last possible moment. Finishing second, Colby ended up drifting simultaneously and ended up in the infield after getting caught on Saunders, who finished third.

Up to race last were the Enduros, but they were definitely not least. Fans had remained steadfast in their seats, ready for the automobile anarchy that is guaranteed when this division takes the field. With suspended procedures for cautions, the feature events raced by these makeshift machines offer continuous action from turn to turn, lap after lap. Saturday night was no exception. To try and keep track of everything that happened during this 40- minute race resulted in serious whiplash, with cars continuously four-wide, flying across infield corners and darting to avoid countless close calls. After all, Enduro is not just a name of coincidence. Whether or not in the top three, these flexible competitors achieve a partial victory through simple survival.

From an initial line up of over 40, three of these survivors achieved glory in victory lane, including Zac Emerson in first place, Caleb Emerson in second and Michael Snyder in third.

Gear up and head over to Wiscasset Speedway this upcoming Saturday for the Top Gun Strictly Shootout, featuring the Strictly Streets division, starting at 5 p.m.. Other drivers from Group 2’s divisions will compete that night, including the Wood Pellet Warehouse Late Model Sportsmen, Kennebec Equipment Rental Outlaw Minis and NAPA Modifieds.

Kids 6 and under enter for free and admission for everyone else is only $5 — less than the cost of a sandwich. For more information, visit www.wiscassetspeedway.com.


Comments are not available on this story.