By Gary Dutton

            CLAREMONT, N.H. – With more than 140 racing teams competing, Claremont Motorsports Park ran its last fan-free pandemic-rules event of the season, Friday, June 12, with Jimmy Renfrew, Jeremy Blood, and Zach Richardson topping the weekly racing series divisions in the night’s five-division event.

            With some restrictions, the storied third-mile speedplant will open it spectator gates for the first time this summer next Friday, June 19.

             Street Stock star Jimmy Renfrew made easy work of winning Friday night’s 30-lap main event. He survived three late-race restarts to earn the win ahead of a blockbuster battle being waged for second and third, not far behind him.

            Renfrew had opened a huge lead when a backmarker-waltz brought out the first caution flag on lap 24 The pause in action also brought Max Dolliver to Renfrew’s back bumper on the restart and, two restarts later, Dolliver had taken the deuce from Jarret Curtis, but the show wasn’t over yet.

            In the most exciting finish of the young season, Brian Robie – the track’s defending open-wheel champion – earned his first Street Stock trophy of the season by storming past Dolliver to score the runner-up finish by inches. Nate Wentzel was fourth, Jim Storace fifth, and opening night winner Dave Greenslit came home eighth on the night.

            A star is born? In only his second-ever outing in the Pure Stocks, ultra-rookie Zach Richardson led all the way to score his first career victory, leading the swarming 26-car field under the checkers in the night’s 20-lapper.

            With two of the apparent top five finishers coming up short in the tech-line shuffle, Dylan Adams was moved up one spot to finish second, his dad, Bruce Adams, was third, with Doug Nelson and Mike Douglas rounding out the top five.

Six Shooter ace Jeremy Blood made easy work of scoring his first win of the season. The defending division champion started up front in the night’s 20-lap feature and never looked back

            Opening night winner Eric Lanou had his second strong outing in as many weeks, earning the runner-up hardware. Todd Maguira came home third, Keith Martin was fourth, and the five spot went to steady Dustin Thibodeau in the one-caution event.

            Only bad luck could keep second-generation star Matt Kimball from victory lane in the 50-lap In-City Sugar Shack Mini Stock main event. And, after dominating the first 44 laps of the half-century feature, the Bennington, N.H. racer heard Lady Luck knocking at his door and, this time, she wasn’t smiling.

            With Kimball ducking pitside with a sour tire, veteran wheelsman Louis Maher took charge, then leading Hayden Grenier under the checkers six go-rounds later to win the series’ first event of the summer.

            Matt Sonnhalter recovered strongly from early-race woes to grab the three spot, with Nick Anderson and Mike Viens completing the top five. Hometracker Erin Aiken was steady all night to come home seventh.

            Enduro artist Matt Gauffin outran a 55-car field of fury to top the show’s nightcap event. Danny Gill was second in the turbulent 50-lapper, with hometrack hot shoe Jimmy Zullo earning the bronze medal.

Fourth and fifth in the first Enduro Series event of the summer were Dan Lebraney and Chris Fultz.

Claremont Motorsports Park will return to action next Friday, June 19, when the Thrasher Road speedplant will open its grandstands for the first time this summer. Post time is 7 p.m. every Friday.

JUNE 12 Top Finishers:

IN-CITY SUGAR SHACK MINI STOCK: Louis Maher, Hayden Grenier, Matt Sonnhalter, Nick Anderson, Mike Viens.

STREET STOCK: Jimmy Renfrew, Brian Robie, Max Dolliver, Nathan Wentzel, Jim Storace, Jarret Curtis, Ben Bosowski, Dave Greenslit, Chase Curtis, Troy Waterman.

PURE STOCK: Zach, Richardson, Dylan Adams, Bruce Adams, Doug Nelson, Mike Douglas, Chris Carver, Matt Lambert, Matt Winter, Brandon Lavoie, Sammy Silva.

SIX SHOOTER: Jeremy Blood, Dustin Thibodeau, Nathan Leclair, Todd Muguira, Ben Bushey, Todd Muguria, Paul Colburn, Ray Luce, Ryan Carman, Dakota Lanou, Erix Lanou.

FOUR-CYLINDER ENDURO: Matt Gauffin, Danny Gill, Jimmy Zullo, Dan Labraney, Chris Fultz.

Photos by Emily Miller