By TIM BALTZ
AKWESASNE – Over 90 cars came to the tack for the final night of points in all divisions at Mohawk International Raceway for 2012.
With only two points separating the top two drivers in the 358 Modified points and a dead heat for the Frenchie’s Chevy Runs Deep 358 Modified Series, it was nothing less than a nail-biter.
In the Bandit division Billy Laplant and Danny Lefebvre led the field to the green with Lefebvre getting the advantage. Stuart Mossow was moving through the field early on and grabbed the lead on lap 4 but headed down the back stretch he and Darryl Mitchell made contact and came to a stop in the infield. The restart left Mathieu Aubin the newly crowned track champion for 2012 at the head of the class. Aubin was the class of the field on the night and would pull away to a full straightaway win with Darryl Mitchell, Frederic Faubert, Peter Cename and Jordan Miller rounding out the top 5.
In the Pro Stock division Preston Mossow and Allen Peters led the field to the green flag with Peters getting the advantage into turn #1. Allen Peters has had some rough luck in the last few weeks and was looking to put that behind him as he opened up 5 car lengths with Stephane Lebrun, Roch Aubin, Dave Rogers and Marc Lalonde giving chase. On lap 6 Roch Aubin who was running in 2nd, spun his machine in turn 2. When the green flag came back out peters continued to lead but the battle was from 2nd on back. Lebrun, Rogers, Marc Lalonde and Jody Swamp were having a spirited battle in the top 5. Lebrun would Secure the 2nd spot and run down the race leader just past the halfway point. With Peters and Lebrun after each other the battle was on for 3rd as Jody Swamp made his way into the top 3 with just 5 to go. But up front Stephane Lebrun tried everything in the books to get by Peters for the lead but it didn’t work as Allen Peters grabbed his first win of the year with Lebrun, Swamp, Aubin and Rogers completing the top 5. PJ Peters did not start the race but had a big enough point lead to secure the 2012 track title.
The Mod Lites were set for battle as Tim Reif and Harley Brown were ready to do go as Brown grabbed the early race lead heading into turn 1. It didn’t take long for Mathieu Robinson to jump into the top spot, Robinson moved by Brown to take over the lead at the end of the first lap and was looking to run away and hide. Points leader Bryan Green was having a rough night. After a wreck in his heat race he was forced to start last in the feature go. Green worked his way into the top5 quickly by lap 5 and was setting sail after Robinson. On lap 9 the first of 2 yellow flags flew first for Bailey McDonald who spun in turn 2. On the next restart Matt Chontosh experienced the same fate. On the final restart Green made his move to take away the lead from Robinson with 4 laps to go. From there Green pulled away to score his 4th in a row and 7th win of 2012 and also secured the 2012 Mod Lite track championship.
The final round of the Frenchie’s Ford “Drive One” Sportsman Series was set to go as Brent Kelsey and Gilles Godard led the field of 27 cars to the green flag with Kelsey grabbing the top spot. Kelsey has gone winless in his career and was trying to change that as he pulled away by a half straightaway by lap 5 with Godard, Dylan Evoy, Mike Arquiett and Brandon Hagan rounding out the top 5. Dylan Evoy had already wrapped up the 2012 Sportsman title but was looking to win back to back Frenchie’s Ford Series titles and made his way to the lead by lap 9 with Godard, Kelsey, Hagan and Arquiett giving chase. Jenna David came to a stop on the front straight with a broken front end. The next lap Thunder Anderson Jr. made heavy contact with the backstretch wall, he would be ok. On lap 15 Josh Brockway also had problems as he slowed in turn 3. This string of cautions allowed Gilles Godard to cool his tires down and make a run for the lead and he did just that as he took over the top spot using the extreme outside lane on lap 18. Godard was on a rail after that, Building up a full straightaway lead over Hagan, Evoy, Josh VanBrocklin and Arquiett. Ricky Thompson brought out the final caution as he spun in turn 2. On the last restart Godard jumped into the lead and would pull away to another full straighaway lead and motor on to his first every Frenchie’s Ford Drive One Sportsman Series win over Hagan, VanBrocklin, Evoy and Mike Arquiett. Evoy’s 4th place finish was enough to secure his 2nd straight Frenchie’s Ford “Drive One” Sportsman Series crown.
The 358 Modifieds had a lot on the line on Frenchie’s night. Billy Dunn and Chris Raabe came in to the night separated by just 2 points in the chase for the track championship. In the same breath, Dunn and Matt Billings were tied for the point lead in the Frenchie’s “Chevy Runs Deep” 358 Modified Series. This race turned out to be one of the best all season as Chris Raabe and Luke Whitteker led the field of 29 cars to Austin Swamp’s green flag with Raabe grabbing the lead in turn 1. Behind him Billy Dunn, Carey Terrance, Luke Whitteker and Dale Planck were having their own battle from 2nd on back. With Rabbe in front lapped traffic was the issue and this allowed Dunn and Terrance to close the gap on Raabe as they battled for the lead. Dunn would make the move for the lead in turn 2 on lap 20 and start to pull away. The first caution came out for Mario Clair who came to a stop on lap 24. On the next restart Dunn grabbed the lead but Raabe was able to stay with him in turn 1. With Raabe and Dunn Battling for the lead Carey Terrance with just being patient and he used that to his advantage as he slip by both Dunn and Raabe to take over the lead on the frontstretch on lap 26 with Matt Billings and Dale Planck rounding out the top 5. From there on it was a classic battle between a former champion and a guy looking for his first as Terrance held a 3 car length lead over Dunn in the closing stages. With 5 to go Dunn made his move on Terrance in turn 4, the 2 drivers battled wheel to wheel until the final lap when Terrance used lapped traffic to gain the advantage and roll on to his 2nd win in a row over Dunn who secured his first ever MIR 358 Modified title and first ever Frenchie’s Chevy Run’s Deep 358 Modified Series crown. Planck Billings and Raabe rounded out the top 5.
Points are in the record books now for 2012 and next on the list is the season finale as 2 big nights of racing are set to go on Friday September 14 and Saturday September 15. With all 4 DIRTCar Series in town, Go Nuclear Late Model Series, Mod Lites,and Bandits on the card through the weekend, it’s sure to be an exciting way to close out 2012.
Mohawk International Raceway is in Akwesasne, NY, midway between the Seaway International Bridge to Cornwall, Ont. and the Akwesasne Mohawk Casino. From Route 37, turn south onto Frogtown Road. Racing is held on Friday nights at 7:30 PM from May through September, featuring the Frenchie's Chevrolet DIRTcar 358 Modifieds, Sportsman and Pro Stocks, as well as the Bandit division. Visit us on the web at www.MohawkInternationalRaceway.com. The MIR office is located at the track, and the phone number is 518-358-9017. The track is owned and operated by Mohawk International Raceway, LLC.
Frenchie’s “Chevy Runs Deep” 358 Modified Series Final(50 laps)
CAREY TERRANCE, Billy Dunn, Dale Planck, Matt Billings, Roy Tarbell, Gage Morin, Mario Clair, Ryan Bartlett, Tim O’Brien, Tom Conklin, Zach Aubertine, Luke Whitteker, Brian McDonald, Joel Doiron, Rob Bellinger, Shane Pecore, David Papioneau, Luke Stewart, Tom Jock Jr., Roger Levesque, Delbert Legrow, Lee Miller, Kevin Fetterly, Kevin Gamble, Preston Forbes, Laurent Ladouceur, Travis Stacey, Danny O’Brien
Frenchie’s Ford “Drive One” Sportsman Series Final (35 laps)
GILLES GODARD, Brandon Hagan, Josh VanBrocklin, Dylan Evoy, Mike Arquiett, Brent Kelsey, Devin Caron, Nolan Swamp, Jessica Power, Wyatt Mullin, Corey Wheeler, Dana Aikins, Darryl Nutting, Billy Cook, Adam Rozon, Zack Arquiett, Josh Brockway, Rick Miller, Andrew Fish, Mike Stacey, Jonathan Ferguson, Thomas Cook, Louie Jackson Jr., Ricky Thompson, John Greene, Thunder Anderson Jr., Jenna David
Pro Stock (20 laps)
ALLEN PETERS, Stephane Lebrun, Jody Swamp, Roch Aubin, Dave Rogers, Marc Lalonde, Dion Oakes, Owen White, Chris Tremblay, Preston Mossow, Dan Desnoyers, PJ Peters
Mod Lite (15 laps)
BRYAN GREEN, Joel Hargrave, Mathieu Robinson, Sylvain Laframboise, Scott Waldorff, Harley Brown, Brad Reif, Tim Reif, Dan Reif, Bailey McDonald, Matt Chontosh
MATHIEU AUBIN, Darryl Mitchell, Frederic Faubert, Peter Cename, Jordan Miller, Billy Laplant, Danny Lefebvre, Matt Zira, Stuart Mossow, Corey Castell, Jenay Morin, (DNS) Darryl Mainville, (DNS) Scott McGill