In addition to the Granite State Pro Stock Series 150 lapper, Beech Ridge Motor Speedway hosted their weekly divisions with an open-competition format this past weekend.
The “NASCAR Nite” competition began with the Wildcats heat races. Mac Hannan, Jr. and Garrett Lamb went head-to-head for the lead in the early laps of the first qualifying heat. Lewis Anderson took a spin on lap 2 in turn 2, leading to an early-race caution.
Mac Hannan, Jr. and Garrett Lamb continued to battle it out for the lead following the restart. Lewis Anderson made up ground following his earlier incident and was right on their heels on lap 6. Madness ensued on lap 7 as Lewis Anderson plowed into a sand pile on the backstretch. The incident led to another caution and Anderson and Garrett Lamb both made their way down to the pits.
Dave Cameron and Mac Hannan, Jr. squared up on the restart before Cameron pulled away with the lead in the closing laps of the heat. Cameron captured the heat victory, followed by Mac Hannan, Jr. and Wade Kennedy.
Rob Herrick powered into the early lead in the second Wildcats heat. After battling it out with Brian Caswell for position, Dan McKeage, Jr. got shuffled to the rear of the field on lap 3. Brian Caswell was all over Rob Herrick for the lead on lap 8, taking over the top spot the following lap. Joe Morse was also on the move in the closing laps, advancing to third on lap 10 as Dan Bernier fell to the back of the pack. Brian Caswell took home the heat victory with Rob Herrick and Joe Morse rounding out the top 3.
Returning competitor, Chad Munro, took off with the early lead in the first Sport Series heat as Nick Calvert lost some ground, falling to the back of the pack. Danny Wear proved strong in the early laps of the heat, challenging to Munro’s inside for the lead on lap 8, taking over the top spot. Bubba Pelton was also on the move, all over Matt Gain’s back bumper for third on lap 8, advancing position that same lap. Danny Wear captured the heat victory, followed by Chad Munro and Bubba Pelton.
Chasing the Checkered’s Charlie Sanborn took off with the early lead in the second Sport Series heat as Chris Smith quickly advanced into the runner-up spot behind him. Joe Pastore was also on the move early, advancing from the rear of the pack to third on lap 1. Sanborn was able to hold off the competition, becoming a heat race hero for the first time in 2020. Chris Smith and Joe Pastore rounded out the top 3.
After the qualifying heat races were completed, the stage was set for the two feature races, beginning with the Wildcats 50-lap feature. Jacob Vaughn and Mac Hannan, Jr. made contact on lap 1, leading to an early-race caution.
Brian Caswell took off with the lead on the restart. Joe Morse was also on the move early, peeking to the inside of Dave Cameron for the runner-up spot on lap 4. The two drivers battled it out for a handful of laps before Morse captured the advantage on lap 7, clearing Dave Cameron. Cameron continued to fall through the field in the coming laps as Rob Herrick and Wade Kennedy cleared him for position. Dan Bernier got bent out of shape on lap 10, falling to the back of the pack.
Dave Cameron’s troubles continued as he got wildly loose battling Dan McKeage, Jr. for position on lap 18, losing a handful of spots. Jacob Vaughn took another spin on lap 26 in turn 1, resulting in another caution. Dave Cameron pulled off-track under the yellow flag but returned before the field went back to green.
Brian Caswell took off with the lead once again on the restart. Rob Herrick was also all over Wade Kennedy for third, taking over the spot on lap 28. Lewis Anderson was back in the groove on lap 33, challenging Rob Herrick for the fourth spot. Dave Cameron pulled off-track once again on the same lap, retiring his #28 machine early.
After battling back and forth for a handful of laps, Lewis Anderson ceased battle with Rob Herrick and fell victim to Dan McKeage, Jr. McKeage continued to show promise in the closing laps of the race, advancing to fourth over Rob Herrick on lap 48.
Brian Caswell held off the competition, scoring his second feature victory of the 2020 race season. Joe Morse, Wade Kennedy, Dan McKeage, Jr. and Rob Herrick rounded out the top five.
On a side note, Wade Kennedy’s 3rd place finish is VERY impressive, as the driver was racing with a broken ankle. Big props to the #00 team for battling through the pain and finishing out the day with a podium finish!
Danny Wear powered into the early lead over Charlie Sanborn in the 50-lap Sport Series feature. Sanborn was back at Wear’s door on lap 7, challenging him for the lead. The two battled side-by-side for two laps before Sanborn took control on lap 9, separating himself from the competition.
While Charlie Sanborn and Danny Wear battled it out for the top spot, Joe Pastore advanced to third over Chris Smith. Bubba Pelton dived to the inside of Chris Smith on lap 15, advancing to fourth. Jason Curtis followed suit on lap 18, challenging Chris Smith for fifth and advancing position just 3 laps later.
Danny Wear began reeling Charlie Sanborn in throughout the closing laps of the race and was at his heels by lap 41. Joe Pastore joined the battle on lap 46, sending the drivers 3-wide for the lead. Pastore took a spin, drawing out the yellow flag. Bubba Pelton and Charlie Sanborn made contact in turn 3 following the incident, but Sanborn was awarded the top spot for the restart.
Bubba Pelton forced another 3-wide battle for the lead on the restart, with Charlie Sanborn falling to the rear of the field. After a strong performance all day, Danny Wear took a spin on the front stretch on lap 48, leading to a late-race caution with just two laps to go.
Jason Curtis led the field to green, but Joe Pastore was in hot pursuit of the leader after restarting at the tail of the field just two laps prior. The two drivers went head-to-head in the closing laps, with the two drivers making contact in turns 3 & 4 coming to the checkered. Pastore nearly lost control but held onto it, reeling in his fourth consecutive Sport Series victory. His feat in the Sport Series is one that has not been accomplished by a Fowler race team at the track in over 10 years, since a successful 2009 season with Mike Rowe. Jason Curtis, Bubba Pelton, Chris Smith and Chad Munro rounded out the top five.
Week 4 of open competition at Beech Ridge surely brought the excitement and we saw 2 returning visitors in Victory Lane.
With 3 weeks still remaining in the 2020 race season, there is more excitement and hard racing yet to come on the agenda.
Join us again next Saturday, August 22nd, at Beech Ridge Motor Speedway for week 5 of the open competition season.
Our local short tracks need our support more than ever right now, so get out there and show your support for our local tracks, drivers and teams.
See you next time, where I’ll be Chasing the Checkered! How about you?