Seth Carlson Etches Name in History Books as First Time Winner at New Hampshire Motor Speedway Dirt Track
Loudon, NH: Seth Carlson of Stafford, CT, became the first winner of a USAC dirt midget race at the new dirt track on the grounds of New Hampshire Motor Speedway. This is Carlson’s third win of the season driving the #2 Seals-it sponsored, Skip Matczak owned dirt midget. Carlson scored the win in front of a packed house of race fans who did not let the extreme heat keep them away from enjoying a full night of racing.
Heat race one (8 laps) started with the 5 of Steve Medford from Ellington, CT on pole and the 17 of Justin Sheridan from Suffield, CT outside row one. With the green flag waiving heat race one was underway with Medford’s 5 taking the point and Sheridan’s 17 close behind. Caution came out on lap two for the 91 of Wayne Koehler flipping in turn one. The track was made ready again and back to racing with Medford and Sheridan keeping spots one and two in front of the field with the 26 driven by TJ Foster of West Topsham, VT in third. With the remaining laps going caution free, the top three would finish battling to the first checker flag of the night. Steve Medford in the Seals-it sponsored number 5 would claim the heat race victory followed by Justin Sheridan’s Ray Miller Racing 17 for second and TJ Foster, Mikes Custom Milling number 26 for third.
Heat race 1 finishing order: Steve Medford (5), Justin Sheridan (17), TJ Foster (26), Owen Carbee (50), Bobby White (68), Tim West (23), Wayne Koehler (91).
Lap leaders: laps 1-8 Steve Medford (5).
Time of race: 10 minutes 6 second (slowed by 1 caution)
Fast lap: Steve Medford (5) 18.02 seconds
Margin of victory: 1.50 seconds
Heat race two (8 laps) had Jeff Horn of Ashland, MA in the A1 starting pole with the 18C of Mike Chaffee from Corinth, VT starting beside Horn. The flagman waived the green and off into turn one with Chaffee quickly taking the point position in the 18C now followed by the A1 of Horn. On lap three the 37 of Tyler Rivard would spin in turn three which brought out the caution flag. Back to green flag action with Chaffee’s 18C still in command of the race with the 7X of Dan Douville from Bridgewater, NH now second after getting around the A1 of Horn. The race would conclude with Mike Chaffee piloting the 18C Miller Racing USAC DMA midget to the win with second place going to the 7X of Dan Douville sponsored by Big Enterprises and rounding out the top three was Jeff Horn in the A-1 Automotive number A1.
Heat race 2 finishing order: Mike Chaffee (18C), Dan Douville (7X), Jeff Horn (A1), David Moniz (9M), Tyler Rivard (37), Jack Arute (10), Alex Rose (11).
Lap leaders: laps 1-8 Mike Chaffee (18C)
Time of race: 4 minute 41 seconds (slowed by 1 caution)
Fast lap: Dan Douville (7X) 18.03 seconds
Margin of victory: 0.372 seconds
Heat race three (8 laps) began with the 12 of Adam Whitney from Warren, VT holding the pole position and the 77 of Jeff Champagne of Westfield. MA starting second. Under green the 12 of Whitney would take command of the race until lap three when Manny Dias from Danielson, CT in the 42 moved from third into the lead as the 12 of Whitney began to experience mechanical issues and had to drop back. Now the 16 with Justin Phillips from West Suffield, CT held second and Seth Carlson of Stafford, CT piloting the number 2 had moved into third. The battle for second and third was contended between Phillips 16 and Carlson’s 2 until lap seven when Carlson made his way around Phillips for second. The race would run caution free and end with the self-sponsored 42 of Manny Dias getting the heat race victory with Seth Carlson Seals-it sponsored number 2 for second and coming in third was Justin Phillips Ray Miller Racing number 16.
Heat race 3 finishing order: Manny Dias (42), Seth Carlson (2), Justin Phillips (16), Will Hull (3), Jeff Champagne (77), Adam Whitney (12), Joe Krawiec (1B).
Lap leaders: laps 1-2 Adam Whitney (12), laps 3-8 Manny Dias (42).
Time of race: 2 minute 26 seconds
Fast lap: Manny Dias (42) 17.60 seconds
Margin of victory: 0.080 seconds
With twenty three USAC Dirt Midget Association teams on hand to race in the first ever open wheel event at the newly constructed dirt flat track on the grounds of New Hampshire Motor Speedway, each driver realized that this event was history in the making and for one of them, they would become the first winner securing a spot in New England racing history. With double points on the line and thirty laps ahead of them, the drivers were ready to go.
For many of the race fans in attendance, this would be the first time they had watched a USAC dirt midget race and the excitement built as the featured race was about to start.
With fireworks going off inside the infield, race heat number one winner Steve Medford of Ellington, CT in the number 5 would have the pole and the 17 of Justin Sheridan from Suffield, CT was starting second. With the race going green it was the 5 of Medford taking control of the field with Sheridan’s 17 holding the second spot. Caution came out on lap two for the 68 of Bobby White making contact with the turn two wall. With the racecar now out of the way it was back to green and Medford’s 5 would keep the point but it was not long before the 2 of Seth Carlson from Stafford, CT would be on the charge forward after starting in the last row. On lap three the A1 of Jeff Horn from Ashland, MA would make the move into second dropping the 17 of Sheridan back to third. By lap five the 2 of Carlson was now third and on the rear bumper of Horn in the A1 who was second. Lap seven with the 5 of Medford still in control of the race, it would be the 2 of Carlson going around the A1 of Horn for second moving the A1 back to third. The caution flag would waive again this time for Medford in the 5 making contact with the 9M of David Moniz from Fairhaven, MA causing both to spin at the start-finish line. With the 5 now spun it would ultimately hand the lead over to the 2 of Carlson. With the track ready to go it was back to green and Carlson’s number 2 had the lead over the field with no signs of giving that position up. Now in second and after starting twelfth was Carlson’s teammate Will Hull of Plainfield, VT in the 3. Jeff Horn would hold the third spot with Jeff Champagne of Westfield, MA in his 77 now in fourth and challenging Horn in the A1for third. Champagne would get around Horn on lap eighteen taking over third.
Carlson in the 2 and Hull in the 3 would maintain the top two positions with Carlson’s lead stretching out three car lengths over Hull. Lap twenty one had the caution displayed for the last time of the evening as the 18C with Mike Chaffee and the 16 of Justin Philips would bang wheels coming out of turn four causing the18C of Chaffee to spin and ending his night. At the same time Jeff Horn’s A1 would spin in turn one to avoid contact with a slowing racecar. Lap twenty two was back to green and it was Carlson in the 2 and Hull in his number 3 battling lap after lap as both wanted to win this special event. Meantime the 1B of Joe Krawiec of Granby, CT would make his way up to the third position moving the 77 of Champagne back to fourth. As the race started to wind down and closing in on lap thirty, the top three knew it was time to make their move and become the first driver to win this event. Under the checker flag it would be Seth Carlson from Stafford, CT in his yellow number 5 Seals-it sponsored USAC Dirt Midget Association racecar scoring the win followed by teammate Will Hull in the 3 from Plainfield, VT also sponsored by Seals-it and rounding out the top three was Joe Krawiec from Granby, CT in the Miller Racing number 1B.
Feature race finishing order: Seth Carlson (2), Will Hull (3), Joe Krawiec (1B), Jeff Champagne (77), Manny Dias (42), Dan Douville (7X), Justin Phillips (16), Adam Whitney (12), Tyler Rivard (37), Justin Sheridan (17), TJ Foster (26), Tim West (23), Jack Arute (10), Mike Netishen (55), Jeff Horn (A1), Mike Chaffee (18C), Owen Carbee (50), David Moniz (9M), Steve Medford (5), Mark Cole (6X), Bobby White (68), Alex Rose (11)-DNS, Wade Koehler (91)-DNS.
Lap leaders: laps 1-9 Steve Medford (5), laps 10-30 Seth Carlson (2)
Time of race: 25 minutes 31 seconds (slowed by 3 cautions)
Fast lap: Seth Carlson (2) 17.6 seconds
Margin of victory: 0.489 seconds
The series will be back in action on Saturday night July 27th at Bear Ridge Speedway in Bradford, VT.