There’s one common demon that race tracks in the Northeast fought all last season: rain. Unfortunately, Mother Nature reared her ugly head once again on Saturday for Wiscasset Speedway’s Group 1 season opener. 

As fans rolled into the stands in heightened anticipation for the festivities, rain started to fall from the skies above. Instead of throwing in the towel, the speedway’s crew put their heads together and worked tirelessly to dry the track. Finally, after an unanticipated 3-hour delay, the track surface was ready for some racing action.

Zach Audet kicks off 2024 with career win #52.

Due to the holdup, track management opted out of qualifying heats for all 4 divisions, running features only. The Kennebec Equipment Rental Thunder 4 Minis kicked off the program with their 25-lap race. 2022 division champion Shane Webber took off with the early lead but defending champion Zach Audet was in hot pursuit, taking advantage of a mid-race restart to catapult himself into the top spot. He maintained command for the remainder of the race, picking up his 52nd career win at the track. Michael Golding and Mickey Landry, Jr. rounded out the podium.

While Nick Hinkley got off to a hot start in the 40-lap feature for the Norm’s Used Cars Pro Stocks, defending champion Josh St. Clair did not have the same luck. He cut down a tire before the start of the race, forcing him to start at the rear. Charlie Colby also faced early-race woes as he took a spin on lap 2, resulting in a caution.

“Part Timer” Kevin Douglass secures the Pro Stock victory.

Jamie Wright took over on the restart with Dan McKeage, Jr. in tow. Meanwhile, 2022 division champion Kevin Douglass was making his way through the field mid-race, stealing the runner-up spot away from McKeage. Douglass held the edge over Jamie Wright following a late-race restart, checking out as drivers battled it out for position behind him. While he sailed into the victory, Dan McKeage, Jr. and Jamie Wright rounded out the top 3.

Ben Burgess tops the podium in the 4-Cylinder Pros.

Defending champion Ben Burgess secured the early lead in the 25-lap feature for the Brackett’s Market 4-Cylinder Pros and never looked back, scoring the win over Jack McKee and John Ricci. 

The program concluded with a 40-lap race for the Gosline Insurance Group Super Streets where Jason Oakes took off with a substantial lead over Landon Tapley. While they checked out, Josh St. Clair and Maurice Young went door-to-door for third. The two drivers made contact a handful of laps later, collecting James Osmond in the melee. Jason Oakes held steady as a handful of mid-race cautions slowed the racing action. He fought off a hard-charging David Greenleaf in the closing laps of the race to secure the victory. Kevin Sherman rounded out the top 3.

Jason Oakes rounds out the night with a win.

Wiscasset Speedway fought the rain on Saturday and won, which is no easy feat. Track promoter Ken Minott would like to thank all of the fans and drivers who stuck it out and had faith in the track to get the program in.

The track hopes for clearer skies and sunshine for the Group 2 season opener on Saturday, April 27th. The racing action kicks off at 2:00 pm with grandstands opening one hour prior to the show. As always, admission is just $5 for adults and free for kids 6 and under.

See you there!

Thank you to Jasen Dickey Photography for all featured photos. Check out his work here.