Sports

Former Top Rookie Goodbout Claims First Late Model Victory

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N. WOODSTOCK, N.H. – Clear skies and a full pit area greeted race fans on Saturday, June 15, at White Mountain Motorsports Park.

Last time’s roll-over was this time’s victory for McKenna Merchant in the Strictly Mini Special. Alongside regular track championship action, the Strictly Stock Minis had a 50-lap, $500 to win special on deck along with a visit from the New England Antique Racers.

The Kids Division got the action started with a spirited battle up front between Jackson Hunt and Jaiden Del Toro. The two Green Mountain Boys battled for the lead while two strong running competitors battled back behind them for third. Two-time 2024 winner Hayden Bushey and multi-time winner Connor Charbonneau swapped lanes in the fight to join the podium right down to the wire. Jaiden Del Toro took down his first feature win, joined by Hunt and Bushey in victory lane.

Eleven Dwarf Cars made for a thrilling twin 20-lap segment feature event. After spearheading the win in segment one, Ethan Tyrrell found himself at the tail of segment two with a tall ladder to climb in just 20 laps. While Andy Hill and Jason Wyman cut and dashed around the quick open-wheeled masters, Tyrrell found himself mired again and again, halting his advance. Andy Hill would nab his third Dwarf Car victory of the season followed by Jason Wyman and Tyrrell.

A long green flag start for the Flying Tigers went cold on lap 21 after contact sent Frankie Sweeney and Nathan Hamblett around in turns one and two. Brandon Gray had made quick work of the field, taking the lead by lap five and powering through the 35-lap feature to claim his fourth consecutive win followed by multi-time champion Shane Sicard and rookie Kyle Willis making his first career podium appearance in the Flying Tiger division.

The Late Models were just the opposite, a rough start made for a short night for several competitors after a lap one wreck along the frontstretch concrete. Back to green, 2023 Rookie of the Year Kyle Goodbout ran the line of a decades-long veteran in his fierce side-by-side battles, first with Oren Remick before taking challenges from Richie Brown and Kasey Beattie. Beattie, returning to White Mountain in further preparation for the American-Canadian Tour Milton CAT Midsummer 250 in August, was digging deep for the elusive Triple Crown after claiming his heat race and semi feature wins.

The lights nearly went out for Beattie as a steady pile of white steam billowed from his overflow through the final 10 laps. Undeterred by the distracting mist off the right side of his windshield, Beattie continued to battle hard with Goodbout but time ran out. Kyle Goodbout claimed his first career Late Model win over Beattie and Quinny Welch.

The Strictly Stock Minis put on a clinic for their annual 50-lap special, the class of Saturday night’s divisions. In just under 13 minutes the popular four-cylinder class ran green to checkers at a grueling pace. After ending her last event upside down and on her roof on the backstretch, young McKenna Merchant showed the way throughout the 50-lap main event. On three separate occasions she found herself sliding through the corners, and allowing her competitors to gain dangerous amounts of territory, but none were able to take full advantage with Merchant claiming the win and the $500 prize. Todd Derrington came home second with Donnie Baumgardner rounding out the podium.

UNOFFICIAL RESULTS (local competitors)

Strictly Minis – (50 Laps)
17. 32, #Kylee Potter, Marshfield, Vt.

Late Models – (50 Laps)
8. 92VT, Jaden Perry, Hardwick, Vt.

Flying Tigers – (35 Laps)
4. 5RI, #Kyle Gravel, Wolcott, Vt.

Kids Division – (15 Laps)
11. 23, Madison Potter, Marshfield, Vt.

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