HERMON, Maine — There were only four cars in the struggling Big Enduro class at Hermon’s Speedway 95 on the Wacky Wednesday race card.
But they treated the fans to a terrific finish.
Dover-Foxcroft’s Shawn Racila and Hermon’s Duane Dunifer were side-by-side as they came around turn four and Racila, who was on the outside, was able to nip Dunifer by the nose of the car.
“I didn’t know if I could get him,” said Racila. “We both had strong cars and (Dunifer) is a hell of a driver. It’s faster on the outside but the (No.) 80 car (Roger Smith of Bangor) lost his radiator and there was a lot of fluid on the track. So it was slick as well as fast.
“It was a hell of a race. It was very exciting,” added Racila.
“He had a little more power than I did,” said Dunifer. “I gave it all she had. That’s all I could do. I didn’t know who won the race (at the finish).”
Racila and Dunifer were both driving Monte Carlos owned by Racila.
“I would hate to see the division die. That’s why I brought the two cars. I just want to try to keep it alive,” said Racila.
“It was fun. I had a blast. It was (Racila’s) car. He deserved to win,” said Dunifer.
Geoff Low of Minot, racing at Speedway 95 for the first time, finished third with Smith winding up fourth after leaving the race on the eighth of the 20 laps due to the radiator problem.
“We came up to race this race to have a good time and we had a blast after I started to learn how to drive the track,” said Low. “I’m not used to having the front end of my car diving down.”
Low also said he wanted to help keep the Big Enduro class alive.
“I heard the division was in trouble so I wanted to come up and help. Shawn (Racila) and I have raced against each other before at Unity (Raceway),” said Low, who drove a Ford Taurus.
It was the first of the three-race summer series for the Big Enduros.
There was another terrific duel in the Trucks after a late-race caution saw James Carr Jr. of Clifton, who was leading the race, choose the inside groove for the restart with Hermon’s Doug Sinclair on the outside. The race leader gets to choose the inside or the outside.
Most choose the faster outside groove but Sinclair said Carr told him he elected the inside because his truck was running well there.
Sinclair was able to capitalize by edging out Carr by a few feet.
“It was a great finish. I was glad he chose the inside,” said Sinclair, who had finished twice to Carr in the first two races of the season.
Levant’s Jason Haskell and Canaan’s Mike Gilbert and Jeff Dewey rounded out the top five in the seven-truck field.
The Stars of Tomorrow division for teenagers was won for the second straight week by Winterport’s Trey Brown, who crossed the finish line four car-lengths ahead of Kenduskeag’s William McCullough. It was the last race in their three-race series.
“The car was good. The tires are getting a little worn on the right side,” said Brown, who drove a Honda Ciera X. “It ran better in the feature than it did in the heat. (McCullough) probably would have been right there if lapped traffic hadn’t gotten in the way.”
“My (Ford Probe) car was a little tight. I think I could have pushed it a little more but I didn’t want to take a chance,” said McCullough.
Frankfort’s Kyle Moore was third and wound up capturing the points title in the three-race series.
“(Brown) was faster than all of us,” said Moore, who added that it was great to win the series points title.
The top three finishers are all 14 years old.
Fairfield’s Kyle Jackson was fourth and Old Town’s Dylan Street was fifth.
Milford’s Garett Hayman took the checkered flag in the Little Enduros only to be disqualified in the technical inspection after the race because her ride height was too low in the front, according to head scorer and office manager Kim Baker Allen.
So Travis Beal of Hampden wound up with the win followed by Brewer’s Sam Betts, Hampden’s Scott Bonney, Winterport’s Henry Boudreau and Dixmont’s Rick Gomm.
There were nine cars and it was the second in the three-race series.
The Ladies Division was won easily by Enfield’s Amy Houde, who had second-place finishes in the first two races.
Hermon’s Rhonda Wilbur was second, Brownville’s Holly Washburn was elevated to third after Clifton’s Nicole Smith was disqualified for a ride-height infraction and Milo’s Erin Evans was fourth. Five cars started the race.