For the first time in Extravaganza Series history, the best of the best go to Lime Rock Park. After the Forrest Grove death, it would appear that most drivers would play it safe. For the most part, it remained true.
For the first 12 laps, it was Johnny Reed Foley and Tim McDonnell battling for the lead in the early going. They passed each other four times before the first caution flew out.
Steven Spears and William Perry tagged coming into the chicane, sending the #65 straight into the tire wall and gasping for air. Despite the oncoming crowd, the debris barely missed the people.
Brodrick Wittmann and Aaron Cummings made contact in the same area as the last wreck. The Subway machine barely missing the crowd and went flipping violently into the forest. Brodrick would come out okay, with nothing but a head full of anxiety.
Matthew Dominique, Johnny Reed Foley, Ryan Heuser and Tim McDonnell were giving it their all to take the top spot, battling hard between laps 19 and 51. Foley and Dominique passed each other ten times during the green flag run.
Ryan and Foley also battled hard, passing each other five times during the same stint. The #18 would short pit on lap 52, taking a full load of fuel while Ryan came in 10 laps later with a half-tank and a five second lead. It's only halfway and pit strategy would start to look significant.
After a Mark Guthrie engine failure, a Cristian Torres crash and a Rick Jackson motor failure, it was a two-way race for sixth between Zach Michael and Tony Pizzaro. As Johnny Reed Foley pulled ahead and four slower cars stayed out, the rest were trapped behind lapped traffic. Ryan Heuser and Matthew Dominique re-pitted and was working their way through heavier traffic towards the back, while Tim McDonnell and John Battista were waiting in the wings behind chase contender Donald Stewart, who went a lap down early. For him, this was likely the final nail in the coffin.
It was looking even more dominant for the #18 than Watkins Glen. With nobody in sight, a green flag run to the end probably would have meant victory again. The reality was a 15th place finish after pitting under the next caution, but he did lead the most laps and continues to be a force to be reckoned with three races remaining in the regular season. He'll have to gain 40 points a race on 10th place for the final three races to make it in.
Glenn Kaufmann had a tire go down entering turn one on lap 106. Chaos ensued behind, as Alex Crapser and John Tharp made every last attempt to crash while trying to pass him. They did not, but the chicane proved a different story for Matthew Dominique and Dalton Lucas. They were three-wide on corner exit, as the #25 hit the #54 on the right side and flew into the bushes, flipping and sending the #88 along as a spectator of the massive barrell-rolls. Both drivers were uninjured, but it sent Matthew all the way to 10th in the standings after leading for most of the season.
The waning laps were a show between Zach Michael, Tim McDonnell and Tony Pizzaro. John Battista, Alex Crapser and Jimmie Stevens lurked behind during the run, but after McDonnell passed Michael on turn one on lap 121, the Caterpillar machine was gone and nobody had a chance. They would need a caution to even the field back out.
The yellow flag never flew. Jimmie Stevens would have to pit for fuel with a couple laps to go, wondering if the rest of the field could make it. They did. McDonnell would ea
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