Wiscasset Speedway hosted their Group #2 Championship Night on Saturday, which was highlighted by the Amsoil Dominator Strictly Shootout. The annual event, founded by Dave Brannon and sponsored by Lee Mortenson and Four Season Synthetic, draws in some of the biggest Street Stock drivers from across New England. This year’s race was no different as 45 drivers competed for 28 starting positions in the main event.

This year, $700 was guaranteed for the winner with thousands of additional dollars up for grabs thanks to a number of different contingency prizes. The top 3 drivers from the past five shootouts were eligible to double their prize money if they finished in the top 3 once again. Kurt Hewins, Jordan Russell, Cam Childs and Zach Emerson led the way in the 4 heat races while Ray Dinsmore and Dan Brown secured themselves into the big show by winning their consolation races. Mark Grantham and Joe Harriman were also given provisionals, allowing them to start the main event.

From Left: Jason Kimball, Bailey Booker, Zach Audet & Jeff Farrington.

As the Strictly Street drivers began preparations for the 50-lap marquee event, the track hosted feature races for all other Group #2 divisions, starting with the Kennebec Equipment Rental Outlaw Minis. Race leader Jimmy Childs suffered a mechanical failure on lap 10 of the feature, catapulting Zach Audet into the lead. He sailed into the victory as Jeff Farrington and Jason Kimball rounded out the top 3. Meanwhile, Kyle Willette was able to secure his second consecutive championship in the division.

From Left: Champ Nick Reno, Chuck Colby and Adam Chadbourne.

Coming into the night, Ryan Ripley and Nick Reno were tied for the points lead in the T&L Automotive Modifieds. Nick Reno won the qualifying heat race, but Ryan Ripley made contact with Reno following the conclusion of the heat race. Race control black flagged Ripley following the incident and he was parked for the feature, ending his championship run prematurely. Later in the evening, Chuck Colby took home the feature victory, which was his first win of the season. Adam Chadbourne and Nick Reno rounded out the top 3 and Reno was crowned the Modified champion. He celebrated on the front stretch with his father and competitor, Steve Reno. He was also joined by his son and fellow Wiscasset driver Reed Reno in Victory Lane. This is Nick Reno’s first career championship at Wiscasset.

From Left: Champ Will Collins, Frank Moulton & Tiger Colby.

Will Collins secured his championship in the Wood Pellet Warehouse Late Models simply by starting the qualifying heat race. Meanwhile, Tiger Colby powered through the field in the 40-lap feature and picked up his fourth victory of the season. Colby, who was crowned the August Driver of the Month earlier in the night, celebrated with a burnout on the frontstretch along with Will Collins, the back-to-back champion. Collins finished second in the race while Frank Moulton rounded out the top 3.

The top 12 qualifiers redrew starting positions from Amsoil bottles.

The top 12 qualifiers for the Strictly Shootout participated in a redraw on the front stretch prior to the start of the 50-lap feature. Jon Emerson drew bottle #1, while Clyde Hennessey drew bottle #2, finalizing the front row for the feature. Multiple cautions led to a start-stop effect in the early laps of the race, but Clyde Hennessey maintained a slight advantage over the competition once the dust settled. Jordan Russell broke free of Josh St. Clair for second on lap 30 before moving onto Clyde Hennessey. Russell made his way to Hennessey’s outside door 4 laps later and officially took over the lead with 9 laps to go.

The leaders began approaching heavy lap traffic in the laps following and Josh St. Clair joined the fray once again, making it a 3-way battle for the top spot with just 7 laps to go. While battling for position, Russell took a spin on the frontstretch but got his big break as the caution flag flew due to another incident on the backstretch. Josh St. Clair pulled ahead on the restart as Clyde Hennessey and Jordan Russell battled it out for second behind him. Russell pulled away with 3 laps to go but Josh St. Clair was too far gone at the front of the pack, taking home the victory.

From Left: Clyde Hennessey, Josh/Max St. Clair and Jordan Russell.

Josh St. Clair celebrated with his friends and family in Victory Lane, donning his race-winning cowboy hat and a $1665 check. Jordan Russell took home $1495 in race winnings with his second-place finish. Clyde Hennessey ultimately scored the biggest paycheck of the night with a grand total of $1815 due to leading the most laps and taking home a few contingency prizes.

The 2023 Strictly Shootout was a big success and Wiscasset Speedway hopes to keep the momentum going as they host Group #1 Championship Night next Saturday, October 7th. The racing events will be followed by an award ceremony, celebrating all division champions. The green flag flies at 12:00 pm and as always, admission is just $5!

Thank you to Steve Girard at SGirardPhotography for the cover photo used in this week’s recap! Check out his awesome photos here!

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