Saturday brought sunny skies for Oxford Plains Speedway’s 2021 Oxford Championship Series opening day. It was also just the beginning of a 2-day weekend program jam-packed with racing action for all ages to enjoy. With the Super Late Models as the premier division of the night, 20 drivers took the opportunity to get their feet wet and warm up for Sunday’s main event.
2020 Oxford Plains Speedway track champion, Dave Farrington, Jr., overtook the early lead in the first of three qualifying heats as Kyle DeSouza trailed closely behind. Calvin Rose, Jr. was all over Alan Wilson for third in the closing laps, but Wilson was able to hold him off, coming across the checkered in third behind Farrington and DeSouza.
Dennis Spencer, Jr. took off with the early lead in the second qualifying heat, but Nick Sweet was quickly on his heels. Sweet was on Spencer’s tail on lap 4, later making his way to Spencer’s door the following lap. Sweet wasn’t backing down, overtaking the lead on lap 6.
Tim Brackett and Scott Moore were door-to-door for third on lap 7, with Moore pulling ahead as Brackett fell back through the field in the closing laps of the heat. Sweet Captured the victory, followed by Dennis Spencer, Jr. and Scott Moore.
Billy Childs, Jr., joining the family’s SLM operation in 2021, went head-to-head with JT Thurlow for the early lead in the third and final qualifying heat. 2019 track champion, Curt Gerry, joined the battle on lap 2, overtaking the lead from both drivers.
Maine racing legend, Mike Rowe, mowed down the field by lap 3 after starting at the back of the pack. He pulled alongside the leaders on lap 3, securing the runner-up spot. Joey Doiron was all over Mike Rowe’s back bumper in the closing laps. But, Rowe was able to hold him off as Curt Gerry took home the final heat victory.
Jordan Russell and Maddy Herrick were two dominant winners among the 4 Championship Series races that occurred on Saturday, capturing victories in their respected divisions.
To cap off the night, the Super Late Model drivers took to the track for the 50-lap main feature. Nick Sweet and Dave Farrington, Jr. squared up for the early lead. Trouble was brewing behind the leaders early as Billy Childs, Jr. and Shane Clark both went around in turn 3 on lap 4, leading to the first caution of the feature.
Dave Farrington, Jr. and Nick Sweet were head-to-head once again on the restart. Sweet finally captured the advantage over Farrington on lap 6, scoring the sole possession of the top spot.
Mike Rowe and Dennis Spencer, Jr. made contact on the front stretch on lap 10, resulting in Spencer taking a spin in turn 1. Both drivers collected themselves as the field remained green.
Nick Sweet was continuing to set the pace mid-race, catching up to the tail end of the field by lap 20.
The field remained evenly spread out until Joey Doiron began to find his groove in the closing laps of the race, pulling up to Kyle DeSouza’s back bumper on lap 38 as he challenged the #1 for fourth place. Doiron made his way to DeSouza’s door the following lap and the two rode it out side-by-side for a handful of laps before Doiron pulled ahead with the advantage on lap 45.
Nick Sweet was able to hold everyone off, capturing his first victory of the 2021 season. Dave Farrington, Jr., Curt Gerry, Joey Doiron and Kyle DeSouza rounded out the top 5.
The victory gives the #40 team the perfect momentum going into Sunday’s Pro All Star Series 150-lap main event on Sunday. Sweet was bad fast all day Saturday, so it will be interesting to see who comes out on top come the end of the weekend.
I hope you will join me tomorrow, April 24th, at Oxford Plains Speedway. The racing action kicks off at 1:30pm and the day will feature the PASS SLM division, the Northeast Mini Stock Tour and the season opener for the PASS Modified tour. Grandstand admission is $25 for adults, $10 for juniors and FREE for children 5 and under.
Get out there and support your local short track. I hope to see you there!