Nick Sweet Scores First Career ACT
Victory Close to Home at Thunder Road
2010 Season Opens With Plenty of Fanfare
Series PR Report

Barre’s own Nick Sweet earned his first career American Canadian Tour (ACT) stock car win in the 12th Annual Merchants Bank 150 at Thunder Road International Speedbowl on Sunday, May 2. Sweet started from the 12th position after qualifying through a consi. He battled his way to the front, driving around Patrick Laperle and then Dave Pembroke for the lead. Sweet held off six-time and defending ACT Late Model Tour Champion Brian Hoar of Williston late in the event. Hoar took second followed by Laperle in third.

Pembroke led the majority of the first half of the race before battling Laperle just after the halfway point in the 150 lap event. Pembroke drove back around Laperle but then lost the battle with Sweet. Pembroke would hold on for fourth and Mark Lamberton took fifth. Craig Bushey, Joey Laquerre, Chip Grenier, Scott Payea and Mark Hayward rounded out the top ten.

The 12th Annual Merchants Bank 150 was the season opener for the 25th Season of American Canadian Tour racing and also the season opener of the 2010 Thunder Road season. With the win Sweet also earned the first invitation to the ACT Invitational at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Saturday, September 18.

The Bond Auto Tiger Sportsman feature went flag to flag with outside pole sitter George May of Barre taking the win. Mike Ziter of Williamstown took second followed by Barre’s Cody Blake in third. Joel Hodgdon and Josh Demers rounded out the top five while Eric Badore, Pete Ainsworth, Tony Rossi, David Finck and Bobby Therrien completed the top ten.

The Allen Lumber Street Stocks and the Junkyard Warriors ran two features. Mike MacAskill of Williamstown, VT took home the first feature win. He was followed to the line by Graniteville’s Travis Hull, Bunker Hodgdon of Hardwick, VT, Jean Leblanc of Gorham, NH and William Hennequin of Morrisville rounding out the top five. The second feature saw Tim Campbell of Topsham take the checkers with Hardwick’s Greg Adams, Barre’s Ron Gabaree, Berlin’s Scott Weston and Joe Fecteau from Hardwick taking the top five.

In the Warriors Cabot’s Ken Christman earned the win in the first feature with Kevin Hebert and Tommy Elwood finishing in the top three. In the second feature Williamstown’s Kevin Wheatley took the win  with Barre’s Kevin Dodge and Williamstown’s Brock Parrott rounding out the top three.

The American Canadian Tour will be back in action next Saturday, May 8 at Airborne Speedway for the Spring Green 100. Thunder Road International Speedbowl will continue the 2010 season Sunday, May 30 with the Mekkelsen RV Memorial Day Classic doubleheader with the Thunder Road Late Model 100 and Modified Racing Series 100. The Thunder Road Late Models will kick off their 2010 championship contention on Sunday, May 23 at Devil’s Bowl Speedway.

Unofficial ACT Merchants Bank 150 Results

1.            88VT      Nick Sweet
2.            37VT      Brian Hoar
3.            91QC     Patrick Laperle
4.            44VT      Dave Pembroke
5.            16NY      Mark Lamberton
6.            05VT      Craig Bushey
7.            15VT      Joey Laquerre
8.            9VT        Chip Grenier
9.            89VT      Scott Payea
10.          77NH     Mark Hayward
11.          55NH     Phil Scott
12.          97NH     Joey Polewarczyk, Jr.
13.          22VT      Jean-Paul Cyr
14.          55VT      Brent Dragon
15.          02NH     Randy Potter
16.          2NH       Tracie Bellerose
17.          18VT      Jamie Fisher
18.          3NH       Michael Kenison
19.          15ON     Derek Lynch
20.          7ME       Glen Luce
21.          41VT      Pete Potvin III
22.          12VT      Reno Gervais
23.          16VT      Joey Becker
24.          04ME     TJ Watson
25.          42MA    Jeff Zuidema
26.          40VT      Eric Chase
27.          1VT        Tony Andrews
28.          42VT      Matt White
29.          38VT      Tyler Cahoon
30.          6VT        Cris Michaud

Opening day is always a big deal at Thunder Road.  (Leif Tillotson Photo)
Eric Chase (#40) and TJ Watson (#04) had a tough day at Thunder Road.  (Eric Lefleche Photo)
Nick Sweet leads the way at Thunder Road.  (Leif Tillotson Photo)
Nick Sweet in victory lane at Thunder Road.   (Eric Lefleche Photo)