Morins Gets Long-Overdue First Late Model Win
Shelburne’s Kaiden “Tropical Storm” Fisher lived up to his nickname at a hot and humid Vermont Tire and Service Night at Barre’s Thunder Road on Friday, Aug. 20. The 13-year-old phenom charged to the lead just before halfway in the 50-lap Street Stock Special to win the event for the second straight year. Fisher also unofficially took over the points lead in the RK Miles Street Stock division.
The youngster started 16th in the 27-car field as Berlin’s Haidyn Pearce set a torrid pace early. Showing shades of his track champion father, Fisher flew up the high side and climbed to sixth by lap 14.
Todd Campbell of Middlesex had run down Pearce in the meantime and went to his outside just as Waterbury’s Thomas Peck spun to bring out the caution. Pearce would have remained the leader, but his car shut down during the yellow and would not refire. That handed the top spot to Campbell, with Fisher now fifth.
Fisher continued to make mincemeat of the field, being up to third just two laps later when Michael “Biffer” Gay of South Burlingon got turned around in turn four to trigger a multi-car logjam. Justin Blakey was to Campbell’s outside on the restart but began to backslide after several circuits. Once the outside opened, Fisher went right to it, flying around Campbell with 24 laps complete. Father-son duo Chris and Kyler Davis of Berlin moved into second and third when Campbell spun off turn four a few laps later.
A pair of cautions on laps 32 and 35 — the first when Blakey cut a right front tire while dueling with Williamstown’s Josh Lovely for fourth, and the second when Campbell and Jesse Laquerre of East Montpelier looped it in turn three — set up a 15-lap dash for cash. Lovely moved to second on the restart as Kyler Davis slipped back to fifth on the outside.
Williamstown’s Tommy “Thunder” Smith climbed to fourth in the shuffle, then tried a crossover move on Chris Davis off turn two with seven laps to go. Davis held his ground and they made contact in turn three with Smith — who entered the night as the points leader — spinning to the infield. All the while, Fisher was on rails, cruising to his fifth career win.
Lovely grabbed second, while Chris Davis, driving in a substitute role for Todd Ramyo, took third. Davis’s teammates Kyler Davis and Jeffrey Martin chased him to the finish. Dean Switser Jr., James Dopp, Taylor Hoar, Tyler Whittemore, and J.T. Blanchard completed the top 10.
Westford’s Darrell Morin picked up a first career win that was a long time coming in the Maplewood/Irving Oil Late Models. Morin started on the pole for the 50-lap event, and after Graniteville’s Stephen Donahue led the opening circuit, Morin took back over.
Donahue was able to stay on Morin’s tail for the first half of the caution-free event. However, the pack of Phil Scott, Matthew Smith, and rookie Brandon Lanphear soon ran down Donahue, with Scott putting the pressure on the second-place car. Barre’s Jason Corliss joined the battle as well in the closing stages after coming from 11th. Morin was loving every minute of it as he pulled away from the hornet’s nest to get his first Late Model victory after seven years of trying.
“Little Irish” Donahue took the runner-up trophy. Corliss caught Scott at the white flag for third. Smith, Lanphear, Christopher Pelkey, Chip Grenier, Scott Dragon, and Kyle Pembroke completed the top 10. Unofficially, Pelkey now leads Corliss by just one point in the “King of the Road” fight with three weekly events remaining.
Hardwick’s Jaden Perry snagged his second win of the season in the Lenny’s Shoe and Apparel Flying Tigers. Perry started eighth in the 40-lap feature and managed to break out of the pack following the lone caution on lap six for Colin Cornell’s flat tire.
After taking brothers Ryan Boutin and Kevin Boutin Jr. on the outside for second, Perry quickly swallowed up the gap to leader Michael MacAskill. As MacAskill’s car pushed high in the corners, Perry took advantage of the open door and drove underneath him to the lead on lap 24. Perry then drove off into the night for his fourth career Flying Tigers victory.
Hinesburg’s Derrick Calkins and Craftsbury Common’s Stephen Martin both chased down MacAskill as well to complete the podium. MacAskill ended up fourth followed by Ryan Boutin, Tanner Woodard, Joel Hodgdon (subbing for Justin Prescott), Kevin Boutin, Sam Caron, and Brandon Gray. Points leader Michael Martin was 11th, allowing son Stephen to unofficially close within eight points.
Wiiliamstown’s Nate “Tater” Brien earned his third win of the year in the Burnett Scrap Metals Road Warriors. Brien flew from 13th to win the first of two 15-lap segments. He then came from the back again, getting into a four-way duel for second in the segment with Josh Vilbrin, Nick Copping, and Matt Ballard.
Copping got crossed up while taking the white flag, which helped trigger a multi-car frontstretch pile-up. Brien expertly raced back to the line, finishing third in the segment behind Jamie York and Vilbrin. That gave Brien the victory with an overall score of four points.
Northfield’s Vilbrin came in second overall with six total points. Williamstown’s Ballard was awarded the third spot following a scoring recheck. Taylor Sayers, York, Frank Putney, Nicholas Copping, Ryan Foster, Paige Whittemore, and Mark Beaulieu also earned top-10 finishes.
Thunder Road hosts Jet Service Envelope/Accura Printing Night next Thursday, August 26 at 7:00 p.m. The final Thursday event of the year features the annual “Run What U Brung” spectator races plus a full card for the Maplewood/Irving Oil Late Models, Lenny’s Shoe and Apparel Flying Tigers, RK Miles Street Stocks, and Burnett Scrap Metals Road Warriors. The pits open at 3:30 p.m. and the front gates open at 5:15 p.m.
Admission is $15 for adults, $5 for kids ages 6–12, and $30 for a family of four (two adults, two kids). Advance tickets are available at www.happsnow.com/event/Thunder-Road-Speedbowl. All Thunder Road events are also live-streamed on FloRacing for those with a paid subscription.
For more information, contact the Thunder Road offices at (802) 244-6963, firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.thunderroadvt.com. You can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter at @ThunderRoadVT. For more information about FloRacing, visit www.FloRacing.com.