Story By: CALE KING / AMERICAN-CANADIAN TOUR – NORTH WOODSTOCK, NH – On a chamber of commerce day in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, both the Stars and Cars of the American-Canadian Tour and the strong fanbase from across New England and Quebec flooded White Mountain Motorsports Park for the 6th annual Milton CAT Midsummer Classic 250.
Forty-two teams from across the region made the trek with the $10,000 payday in mind and all the glory of being on the short-list of Milton CAT 250 champions.
Three rounds of qualifying cut down the forty-two-car entry list to just thirty-one starters. While former circuit winners Jimmy Renfrew Jr., Tom Carey III and Dillon Moltz, along with defending White Mountain track champion Quinny Welch claimed the four heat race wins, ACT Tour hot-shoes Derek Gluchacki, Gabe Brown, Tanner Woodard and former ACT champions Joey Polewarczyk and Brian Hoar had to push through the three consolation races. Only Jesse Switser and Patrick Laperle were able to qualify in through the twenty-lap B-Feature to set the thirty-one-car field with eleven cars unable to qualify.
Courtesy of their +4 earned in their respective heat race qualifiers, North Haverhill’s Ryan Olsen took the pole over Tanner Woodard with Jimmy Hebert, Kasey Beattie and Gabe Brown just behind, each with a +3 handicap. Trouble brewed early for top-three championship contender Jimmy Renfrew Jr. with his car unable to fire off, sending him pit-side for a new battery. While Olsen led at the onset, Hebert was eager to roll, taking over at lap 10. The first major caution would fly at lap 32 with Laperle’s right front down, sending Jamie Swallow Jr. spinning and Peyton Lanphear colliding into him. Both Lanphear and Swallow would end their night with busted radiators and overheating issues.
On the restart Hebert took the edge on Tanner Woodard with the ACT Rookie of the Year candidate opting to follow the 2020 champion in the early stretch. Unfortunately, Woodard would help call out the caution on lap 77 as both he and Keegan Lamson went for the spin job in turn three. Both Hebert and Gabe Brown took the opportunity to jump into the pits for their change tires leading to a White Mountain local front row with Welch and Beattie heading the restart.
With Beattie in command, he’d lead until the lap 100 competition break for fuel with Gluchacki, Erick Sands, Polewarczyk and Laperle returning for their tire changes. With the pitting for tires, Hebert found himself glued to Beattie’s rear bumper on the restart and overtook the White Mountain point leader on lap 110. After the field stretched out and settled in, an extremely ill-handling Laperle called it a night at the halfway point and fellow Canadian Alexendre Tardif out just twenty-five laps later with a broken sway bar.
Around the lap 160 mark, former Milton CAT 250 winner Jason Corliss worked his way up into the top-10 but just as his rise began to bring him closer to the action, something went amiss in the Milton CAT/Booska Worldwide Movers machine with Corliss ending his night on lap 165. After a mid-pack run, Ryan Olsen called out the caution on lap 193 for a slide and stop in the middle of turns three and four to set up a duel between Gabe Brown and Derek Gluchacki out front.
The duel got very physical very quickly with Gluchacki leading Brown, the 60ME machine made contact with the rear of the 03MA and sent Gluchacki barreling into the infield, collecting Joey Pole and Tanner Woodard. All would restart at the tail leaving Scott Dragon and B-Feature winner Jesse Switser leading the pack. With fifty laps remaining Switser led defending Milton CAT 250 winner D.J. Shaw, Dragon, Brian Hoar and Dillon Moltz. Shaw’s run ended just seventeen laps later with a flat left rear tire to restart out of the top-fifteen. A wild restart with Switser and Hoar saw Scott Dragon dive underneath the leaders for a three-wide move in turn three as Gluchacki and Brown followed. Dragon’s strong run went up in sparks with a flat right front in turn four leaving Switser to face Moltz on the short-lasting restart.
One final caution with ten to go gave the packed grandstands one final showdown between Switser and Gluchacki with Switser choosing the bottom and putting it all out there in the final rounds. Under the twin-checkers, West Burke, Vermont’s Jesse Switser took down his first career American-Canadian Tour triumph to the tune of $10,000 with Dillon Moltz and Gabe Brown rounding out the victory lane podium. Derek Gluchacki took home fourth in a late race rebound with White Mountain point leader Kasey Beattie finishing fifth. Brian Hoar, Brooks Clark and ACT point leader D.J. Shaw took down sixth, seventh and eighth with Jimmy Hebert taking ninth after a late-race tire issue and Blainville, Quebec’s Jonathan Bouvrette rounding out the top ten.
After a weekend off the American-Canadian Tour hits a busy and championship-determining stretch of three big events in three weeks starting with the rescheduled 48th Spring Green 123 at Seekonk Speedway on Saturday, August 19th. After visiting the ‘Cement Palace,’ the ACT Tour headlines the Saturday night before the 50th annual Oxford 250 at Maine’s Oxford Plains Speedway on August 26th before returning home to Barre, Vermont’s Thunder Road International Speedbowl on Sunday, September 3rd for the $5,000-to-win Labor Day Classic 200 presented by New England Federal Credit Union. Three weeks of fender-to-fender action and three can’t-miss events that could determine the 2023 American-Canadian Tour championship!
White Mountain Motorsports Park – N. Woodstock, NH
Saturday, August 5, 2023
6th annual Milton CAT Midsummer Classic 250
1. 25NH Jesse Switser West Burke, VT
2. 5CT Dillon Moltz New Sharon, ME
3. 60ME Gabe Brown Center Conway, NH
4. 03MA Derek Gluchacki North Dartmouth, MA
5. 45NH Kasey Beattie St. Johnsbury, VT
6. 45NY Brian Hoar Williston, VT
7. 68VT Brooks Clark Fayston, VT
8. 04VT D.J. Shaw Center Conway, NH
9. 58VT Jimmy Hebert Williamstown, VT
10. 41QC Jonathan Bouvrette Blainville, QC
11. 92VT Jaden Perry Hardwick, VT
12. 77NH #Bryan Wall Jr. E. Kingston, NH
13. 31CT #Andrew Molleur Shelton, CT
14. 0VT Scott Dragon Milton, VT
15. 68NH #Tanner Woodard Waterbury Ctr., VT
16. 61NH Ryan Olsen N. Haverhill, NH
17. 78NH Quinten Welch Groveton, NH
18. 36NH Erick Sands Derry, NH
19. 55VT #Keegan Lamson Berlin, VT
20. 00NH Jimmy Renfrew Jr. Candia, NH
21. 97NH Joey Polewarczyk Hudson, NH
22. 66VT Jason Corliss Barre, VT
23. 78CT Walter Suttcliffe E. Haven, CT
24. 21QC Alexendre Tardif Notre Dame des Pins, QC
25. 91QC Patrick Laperle St-Denis, QC
26. 7ME Dylan Payea Milton, VT
27. 99NH Ben Belanger Whitefield, NH
28. 5MA Tom Carey III New Salem, MA
29. 55QC William Larue Quebec City, QC
30. 22VT Peyton Lanphear Waterbury, VT
31. 4NH Jamie Swallow Jr. Groveton, NH
DNQ 86VT Marcel J. Gravel Wolcott, VT
DNQ 49NH Matt Anderson Franklin, NH
DNQ 7NH Joel Hodgdon Craftsbury Common, VT
DNQ 28NH Ricky Bly Sunapee, NH
DNQ 04NH Shawn Swallow Groveton, NH
DNQ 5ME #Dominic Curit Saco, ME
DNQ 17NH #Kyle Goodbout N. Woodstock, NH
DNQ 27NH Cam Huntress Rochester, NH
DNQ 21VT Reilly Lanphear Waterbury, VT
DNQ 7NC Davey Riendeau Mooresville, NC
DNQ 47NH Brock Davis Whitefield, NH