Fisher Ends Thunder Road Drought
BARRE, Vt. – Jamie Fisher, driving the S. D. Ireland No. 18, led the final 18 laps of the Safelite Auto Glass Late Model 50 to become the sixth different winner in the last six races Thursday at Thunder Road.
It was the first Late Model victory at the “Nation’s Site of Excitement” since 2009 for the former track champion as well as the 14th of his career.
Fisher overtook rookie Jason Corliss for the lead after gaining three spots in the previous eight laps. Joey Laquerre got underneath Corliss for second when Corliss bobbled in turn four with seven circuits left, but couldn’t close in on Fisher. Corliss wound up 3rd, three car-lengths ahead of Derrick O’Donnell whose 4th-place effort unofficially moved him into lead in the championship point standings. Brooks Clark completed the top-five.
“The car felt better up on the outside,” Fisher said. “Once I got a little daylight on Joey, I thought I was in good shape. It’s been a while.”
Fisher’s drive for the lead was set up by the second and final caution after Phil Scott’s spin on lap 23. Fisher was alongside Corliss on the front row with Laquerre and Eric Chase in row two. Nick Sweet, who began the night atop the standings, placed 11th.
Scott breezed to a win in his Late Model heat. The other two Late Model heats came down to the wire. Joey M. Laquerre used the outside lane to beat his grandfather Joey Sr. to the line in the first heat. Corliss nipped Dave Whitcomb by a wheel width in his qualifier.
Rookie Cam Ouellette of Barre dominated the Bond Auto Parts Tiger Sportsman feature to complete a triple crown night. Ouellette, Eric Badore and Randy Gonyaw took the Tiger Sportsman heats. Ouellette was much the best in the semi-feature. Tucker Williams held off Badore as the semi runner-up. Josh Demers and Mike Billado were next.
Ouellette started on the outside pole. He was tracked by veteran Joe Steffen of Essex Jct. in the Tiger main. Steffen got tested by Tucker Williams and Randy Gonyaw over a dozen laps of tight racing, but held on for his third top-5 finish. Jason Woodard outlasted John Lambert and Jason Allen to claim fifth.
Rookie Tommy Elwood of Morrisville was a convincing winner in the Allen Lumber Street Stock feature. Point leader Dean Switser Jr. finished second, well ahead of a give-and-take battle for third, which went to Greg Adams ahead of Willy Hennequin and Bunker Hodgdon.
Paul Dudley of Waitsfield won the “Rough Rider” feature. Dudley claimed wins in both segments of the event. Alan Derrington and Chris LaForest completed the podium.