Oyster Bed Speedway Surf & Turf ‘Four Fun Getting Serious’
With 5 remaining scheduled race dates in the Oyster Bed Speedway schedule things are beginning to tighten up in many divisions. None of course tighter than the Street Stock Division. That division is the toughest in the Maritimes, but they have gotten plenty of well-deserved fan fair so today we start where we always do on race day; Mini Stock.
Since June 25 in the Mini Stock standings the top three has remained the same three drivers. Both 2016 Points Champion Mitchell Montgomery and 2016 Rookie of the year winner Jordan Leclair have swapped the overall lead with Jeff Richard rounding out the top three for more than a month now.
Montgomery who also claimed the Super Series last year has maintained his points lead to this point by consistently driving the car to a top three finish. The Tyne Valley driver has secured a Feature win and a heat win already this season but his 12 top 3 finishes lead the division. Starting from the back of the pack has not interfered with those solid finishes in features scoring 4 podium finishes out of possible 6 features. The two finishes outside of the top three were fourth.
Leclair on the other hand has gotten to the top and stayed there in a much different fashion. The second year driver from Tignish leads the division in Heat Wins with 6. The team will have to learn to become more consistent if they want to compete for the points down the home stretch. Their biggest demon so far this season has been the features. After the opening two weekends when the team scored a pair of top three finishes, Leclair has yet to get a podium finish since. After a pretty impressive rookie campaign last year one has to think this team will get that feature win before the month of August is out. Meanwhile second in points is a great spot to be with 5 races left.
As the top three in points continues to get crowded with drivers from West Prince another Tignish driver rounds out the top three. Jeff Richard one of only two drivers this season to take home a triple win on a single race card.
It should be mentioned that Shane Bridges would be in this conversation as well if it wasn’t for two failed engines already this season. Despite missing a third of the races the Tyne Valley native leads the division in both total wins (7) and Feature wins with 3. He currently sits 7th in points.
As stated before, this division is shaping up to be a good finish. Not only in points but there is some great racing going on among every position on the track. With 9 rookies in the field our future looks bright.
The Outlaw Division will feature a round of their Super Series Saturday night. Two Time Champion Kendall Palmer has had a strangle hold on the points since June 25th. After Palmer was unable to finish the Feature on June 4th he went on to 12 straight podium finishes and counting. Outside of that one DNF his only other blemish outside of the top 3 came on that same day finishing 4th.
Shaun Morrison is currently assigned the task to track down the leader in points. Another driver who rarely scores outside of the top three after doing it 14 times this season out of 18 races. He is also tied for the Division lead in wins with 5. Alex Myers from Miscouche is the other driver with 5.
Another Two Time Champion in Nick Chaisson has made his way up the points and finds himself looking down on the entire field. The Veteran driver will be hard to knock off his perch but with so many drivers lurking he will have a lot of drivers eyeing him down. With 5 or more drivers still in contention mistakes now are costly to all the cars in contention. This was very evident last Saturday night Colton Ford was very upset and frustrated at his luck. The former Champion was so uncharacteristically upset he forgot the mandatory rule of staying in your car while it is on the track and suffered more a point loss.
Randy Millar’s lead in the Late Model Division has slipped back to second after Mark LeClair snuck into the top spot. LeClair’s car has been the most dominant on all fronts. Not only does he lead the division in points but he also leads or shares the lead in Heat, Feature and Total Wins along with Top 3’s.
Surf: This week’s Surf Goes out to Greg Proude and his team. Congrats on the big win at our Home track. Thankful that, the Trophy is staying put here on PEI. Some of the best drivers on the tour challenged Proude but he continued to keep all challengers at bay and when the final laps were ticking down Proude showed us all he was saving a bit for the end as he began to pull away from the crowd. Congrats. And a secondary note thanks of course to Tim Terry for inviting me on for the broadcast for some color commentary. It was the first time I added my voice to the Pro Stock Race and it was a blast to be a part of the broadcast. Thanks Tim and to the fans I hope we kept you somewhat entertained during those cautions.
Turf: Rubbing is Racing. I have heard of some drivers getting their nose out of joints and some fans when they see two cars come into contact with each other. Relax. Things aren’t always as they seem. Yes of course there are plenty of deliberate attempts to spin another driver and yes I am sure some drivers deserve to be spun. But, not every time contact is made is it necessarily deliberate. Decisions are made in a split second and contact is unavoidable it will happen. A good sign to tell is if after the contact has been made did car behind let off the gas and allow the driver to save it. Many times the faster car in the back will try a bump and run. Comes with big risk but when executed perfectly with precision it is a joy to watch. So as every position and point becomes more and more important every week. The rubbing will only increase and so will the frustration level. Can’t wait.
Racing gets underway Saturday night at 6PM.
Written By: Track Announcer Jeremy MacDonald