HERMON — Andrew McLaughlin of Harrington and Jim Carr Jr. of Clifton waged a terrific battle for 42 laps during the second annual Ikey Dorr Memorial (Strictly) Street race at Speedway 95 Thursday night but McLaughlin eventually pulled away to defend his title by eight car-lengths and pocket the $1,500 winner’s share.
Carr wound up second and took home $1,000 and Adam Chadbourne of Woolwich was third and earned $750.
Rounding out the top five in the 23-car field were Carl McAlpine of Burnham and David Brannon of Lisbon.
There were six cautions in the race which is named in honor of Dorr, who died of a heart attack while racing at Speedway 95 in 2009.
The top six drivers based on their top-three finishes in the two heat races drew for the top six starting spots. A number, one through six, was attached to the bottom of a 12-pack of Pepsi Max.
Chris Jacobson of Seabrook, N.H., won the pole by drawing the number one; Carr was second and McLaughlin started sixth.
Cornville’s Shelby Kimball, who started fourth, had her night ended prematurely when two cars got loose and one of them sideswiped her car and pushed it up into the banking between turns three and four on lap two. She drove off but her car was too damaged to continue.
Kimball is running second in points to McLaughlin in the Street Class at Speedway 95 but Thursday’s race was a non-points races.
By lap five of the 50-lap race, McLaughlin and Carr began a scintillating duel that lasted until McLaughlin finally pulled away with eight laps remaining.
“It was a good race. My car started getting loose at the end and it got away from me,” said the 57-year-old Carr.
“This feels better than last year’s win because after winning the first one, everyone is gunning for you,” said the 27-year-old McLaughlin. “The car was real good tonight. It had real good front bite off the corners.”
He called it one of the most exciting races he has ever been involved in.
“Jim raced me clean. I wished it could have lasted until the end,” said McLaughlin.
A red flag came out on lap 33 when Hermon’s Bernie Thayer, who was racing in the top five, apparently had his engine blow entering turns one and two, and careened up into the banking and flipped the car onto its hood.
Fortunately, Thayer wasn’t injured.
Two other cars slid off the track in the oil left on the track by Thayer but the drivers weren’t hurt.
In the 35-lap Late Model feature, Ryan Deane of Winterport led from start to finish to win for the first time since 2010. He finished 10 car-lengths ahead of Hermon’s Mike Hopkins with Bangor’s Donny Blanchard, Ellsworth’s Andy Saunders and Orrington’s John Kalel II rounding out the top five.
“The crew did a great job. We changed a bunch of things between the heat race and the feature. We changed the springs so the car wouldn’t bottom out on that bad bump between turns one and two,” said Deane. “It’s been a long time waiting (for a win).”
“Ryan deserved this,” said Hopkins.
In the Sportsman class, Holden’s Steve Moulton picked up his sixth win of the season and third in a row. Prospect’s D.J. Moody was second by two car-lengths followed by Greenbush’s Gene Wasson, James Robichaud of Orrington and Kris Matchett of Skowhegan.
In the Bombers, Garrett Hayman of Milford took the checkered flag 12 lengths ahead of Darren Durrell of Newburgh with Carmel’s Jeremy Scott, Hermon’s Andrew Crosby and Dennis Burns of Carmel rounding out the top five.
In the Sports fours, Fred Ashmore Jr. of Hancock won for the second straight week with Crosby, Carmel’s Ted Ryder, Skowhegan’s Zack Audet and Hudson’s Donny Silva completing the top five.
Ashmore Jr. won by nine car lengths.