Story By: STEVE PETTY / MERRITTVILLE SPEEDWAY – THOROLD, ONT – Two-time and defending Series Champion Chad Chevalier from Port Colborne, Ontario scored the victory in the $2,000 to win event for the Bellinger Electric Inc (BEI) Lightning Series for the David Chevrolet DIRTcar Sportsman Monday night at Merrittville Speedway.
Jeremy Cooper from St. Catharines, Ontario picked up the victory in the Insta Panels Duel on the Dirt combined race for the Central Fabricating 4 Cylinders.
Dylan Davidson and Chad Chevalier brought the BEI Lightning Series to the green flag for their 40-lap main event with Chevalier leading at the end of lap one. James Michael Friesen would battle with Davidson for second as Brent Begolo battled with Ryan Ferri for fourth place. A trio of cautions would slow the pace of the beginning of the main event. Once the field got going, Chevalier would start to pull away from Davidson and Friesen. Greg Panunte and Kyle Inman would work their way through the field and would enter the top 10 and would challenge for positions inside the top five during the second half of the main event. Zackery Payne would spin in turn two right in front of Dylan Davidson to bring out the caution on lap 30. The late-race restart would see Chevalier showing the way over Friesen with Davidson. Cody McPherson entered the top five with less than ten laps remaining and would take over third from Davidson. Chevalier would go on to score the win. The next race for the BEI Lightning Series will be the Sean Letts Memorial on Friday, September 13 at the Ransomville Speedway. The five random position draws from Baron Roofing and Bobcat of Hamilton went to Kyle Inman, Paul Gaboury, Luke Carleton, Jim Harbison, and Dylan Davidson.
The Central Fabricating 4 Cylinders had their Insta Panels Duel on the Dirt combined race which saw Jeremy Cooper lead off the green flag. Off a lap four restart, Cooper continued to show the way over Craig Vlasic, Cole Hardy, Tyler Lafantaisie and Leroy Buscumb. The leaders would hit lap traffic and would be a factor as it would allow Vlasic and Lafantaisie to close in on Cooper. Lafantaisie would take second away and would throw everything he had at Cooper while working lap traffic in the second half of the race. Dan McKay and Kyle Wert would come together on the front straightaway to bring out the caution on lap 21. Cooper and Lafantaisie would battle for the lead off the restart as Vlasic, Hardy, and Leroy Buscumb raced in the top five. Lafantaisie would regain the lead on lap 28 with Cooper battling back for the top spot. Cooper would regain the lead with 10 laps remaining. Cooper and Lafantaisie would pull away from the balance of the field. Cooper would go on to score the feature win, his first of the season. The five random position draws from Baron Roofing and Bobcat of Hamilton went to Evan Curtis, Vincent Pagnotta, Garnet Wilson, Trevor Want, and Kurtis Wiley.
Racing action returns to Merrittville on Saturday, August 10 as Niagara Employment Help Centre presents a full Bobcat of Hamilton Weekly Racing Series program featuring the Bill Willard Sr Sterling Silver Cup for the Sportsman plus the annual Kids Box Car Races. Pit gates will open at 5 pm with grandstands opening at 5:30 pm. Showtime is at 7 pm.
RACE RESULTS – BARON ROOFING & SIDING, BOBCAT OF HAMILTON NIGHT
BEI Lightning Series: CHAD CHEVALIER, James Michael Friesen, Cody McPherson, Brent Begolo, Kyle Inman, Dylan Davidson, Ryan Ferri, Greg Panunte, Adam Leslie, Jim Harbison, Trevor Wright, Jordan Cosco, Noah Walker, Paul Gaboury, Garrison Krentz, Zachery Payne, Dave DiPietro, Justin Sharp, Luke Carleton, Brett Senek, Brad Rouse, Robbie Johnston, Brandon Gruhl, Jay Mallory
Qualifying Winners: James Michael Friesen, Cody McPherson, Zachery Payne, Dave DiPietro
Last Chance Qualifiers: Justin Sharp, Kyle Inman
Low Cash Dash: Derrick Borkenhagen, Vince Fargnoli, Travis Miller, Boyd MacTavish, Ray Hockridge, Noah Mamo, Nathan Peattie
Central Fabricating 4 Cylinders: JEREMY COOPER, Tyler Lafantaisie, Kyle Rothwell, Craig Vlasic, Cole Hardy, Leroy Buscumb, Jay Moulton, Jonathan Ayrton, Vincent Pagnotta, Dan McKay, Kyle Wert, Fabio Oliveri, Trevor Want, Kurtis Wiley, Mike Sarantakos, Matt Morre, John Lubeck, Evan Curtis, John Cote, Mike Giberson, Tony Kelly, Rob Twitchett, Garnet Wilson, Jason Tolton, Anthony Kelly, Caleb Serevin
Did Not Qualify: Wes Bertozzi, Cameron Lane
Qualifying Winners: Tyler Lafantaisie, Tony Kelly, Kyle Rothwell