Wiscasset Speedway took the turn towards the home stretch of the 2022 season Saturday evening, Sept. 10 with Group 1 in action along with the second appearance of the season for the G.O.Motorsports NELCAR Legends. The regular weekly divisions on the card included Pro Stocks, Thunder 4 Minis, 4-Cylinder Pros, and Super Streets. For the Super Streets, it was their final points race of the season, with four drivers vying for the championship. By the time the final checkered flag flew, division titles were wrapped up in two divisions including a history-making run in the Super Streets.
The program began with a 25-lap feature for the Brackett's Market 4-Cylinder Pros. The class has showcased some of the best up-and-coming young talent at Wiscasset, and Saturday night was no exception. Saco's Andy Kaherl paced the field early until he was passed by outside pole sitter Ben Burgess. Burgess led the next 20 laps as pressure mounted from behind by Daniel Harding, Josh Hall, and Sylas Ripley. With the signal for 2 laps to go, Harding jumped to the outside to challenge Burgess for the win. The pair stormed out of turn 4 to the checkers dead even and Harding would edge out Burgess by 0.038 sec for the win. It was Harding's 3rd win of the season and expanded his point lead over Josh Hall heading into their points finale on Oct. 1. Burgess took home the runner-up trophy while Sylas Ripley finished 3rd.
The G.O. Motorsports NELCAR Legends were the spotlight division for the program, complete with front stretch driver intros and a 25-lap feature. The race showcased a great battle between defending Nelcar champion Trevor Krause of Gorham against current point leader Devin Deshaies who came up from Rhode Island to try to add to his national INEX Semi-pro point lead as well. The pair started side-by-side on the front row for the feature. Deshaies was strong in the early going, but Krause was able to reel him in and take the lead near the midpoint of the race. He would pull away to a sizable half-straightaway lead until a caution came out with five laps to go. Deshaies grabbed the lead from Krause on the restart once again, Krause was able to chase him down to take the lead back just as the white flag flew. Deshaies responded with a textbook "bump and run" maneuver on the final lap to claim the victory. Krause would settle for second. Kyle Caissie of Marlboro, MA filled out the podium with an uncontested 3rd place run.
The Norm’s Used Cars Pro Stocks rolled into their 40-lap feature coming off last week's Boss Hogg 150 weekend. Point leader Kevin Douglass came in with a comfortable cushion in the standings but was forced to run a borrowed car thanks to a big wreck he suffered while leading the 150. His closest competition in the standings, Logan Melcher of Fayette held the early lead in Saturday's feature, gunning for his second career Pro Stock win. Just past the halfway point of the race thing took a major turn as Melcher first lost the lead to Josh St Clair on a restart, then lost control on the backstretch coming out of turn two, where he collected the car running to his inside driven by Nick Hinkley. The wreck also took Shane Clark and Joe Harriman out of contention. Josh St Clair resumed his lead over the final laps of the race and secured his third Pro Stock win of the season - his 14th win of the year over four different divisions. Jaime Wright of Woolwich backed up his runner-up finish in the BH150 with runner-up honors in this race. They were joined in victory lane by Scarborough's Garrett Hall who started 12th and raced his way to the third place finish. By following his strategy of laying back and staying out of trouble, Kevin Douglass quietly brought it home in sixth place, good enough to clinch the 2022 Pro Stock championship with one points race left to go.
The Sweatt's Concrete Thunder 4 Minis struggled to gain any momentum in the early going of their 25-lap feature, with four caution in the first 8 laps - including a pair of red flag stops for cars in the wall. With a single file restart and the threat of their race ending early on the next flag, the drivers settled down and finished the full complement of laps caution-free. The challenges of the race did not deter veteran David Cook of Jay from leading the race from start to finish for his 4th victory of the season. Zach Audet of Norridgewock took advantage of the early cautions and picked his way up through the field to claim second. Winslow's Kyle Willette, the Outlaw Mini points leader, followed Audet to victory lane to claim the 3rd place trophy.
The final race of the night had the most on the line as the Super Streets lined up for their final points race of the season. Rookie Brett Osmond of Wiscasset and last year's runner-up Matty Beers came in tied atop the standings with newcomer Richard "Bubba" Pelton lurking just 2 points behind after winning the most recent race. Canton's PJ Merrill was also within striking distance of the title but would need things to fall into place to make it happen. Just a year earlier, Brett's dad James Osmond went into the finale tied with Beers and went on to nab the crown. Thanks to his heat win, Brett Osmond would start the 30-lap feature in the 7th position in the 19-car field, while Beers & Pelton started 11th & 13th respectively. Both Osmond and Beers found success in the outside lane early as they marched toward the front. Osmond took the lead from Bill Pinkham just past lap 10 and pulled away while Beers worked to keep him in sight. The race was slowed by just one minor spin, leaving the championship contenders the opportunity to race it out for the title. Bubba Pelton struggled in the early going, patiently waiting for the field to spread out and open a lane. That opportunity came with five laps to go as he stormed up the outside and into the top 5. Brett Osmond withstood the late race challenge from Beers, Josh St Clair, and a hard-charging Pelton, and drove to the victory and the 2022 Super Street championship. In doing so, he became the first rookie since Brett Mank in 2003 to win the Super Street division. Also making history, the father & son duo of James and Brett managed to claim the same division title back to back in the same car - a feat never before accomplished. Matt Beers took home the second-place trophy and ends up as the division runner-up for the second consecutive year.
Wiscasset Speedway returns to action on Saturday, September 17th with Group 2 Fan Appreciation Night, presented by Bozzutto's Inc and Mainely Motorsports. Fans will be treated to an on-track driver autograph session at 4 p.m., followed by kids' bike races at 4:45. The evening's program will also include a prize raffle fundraiser for Special Olympics. Pit gates will open at noon with grandstands opening at 2 for VIP season ticket holders and 3 for general admission. As always, admission is $5 for the grandstand side (kids 6&under free) and $20 for the pits. For more info, go to the track's website www.wiscassetspeedway.com Wiscasset Speedway is located on West Alna Road in Wiscasset.