Newburgh, NY — Former Thompson Mini Stock Champion Eric Bourgeois of East Haddam, CT claimed his first victory in the Allison Legacy North Race Series this past Saturday night at Monadnock Speedway. Bourgeois entered the series in 2006 and ran a limited schedule over the last two years. In 2009 Bourgeois was hired to run the #8 KMV Racing & V-Twin Performance Ford Thunder. Over the last several weeks Bourgeois has worked with current ALNRS point Paul Tuthill to help improve his race cars set up. It paid off Saturday night as Bourgeois, who started third in the ten car field for the heat race, moved into the top spot by lap 4 and never looked back. With his win Bourgeois would start on the pole for the 20 lap feature.
Lap 1 would see the first of only 3 cautions for the evening as the #5 of local driver Nathan Johnson of Troy, NH in his Johnson Roofing Ford Thunder and Somers, CT driver Cody Gneiting in the #89 Custom Homes by Cooker Construction sponsored Ford would make contact in the middle of turns 3 & 4. On the restart it was Bourgeois followed Dighton, MA driver James Logan in the #44 G. Lopes Construction sponsored Ford , the #99 Victory Lane Bar & Grill of Millis, MA driver Tommy Barrett, who has been on fire over the last several weeks. Rounding out the top five were Bennington, NH driver Kyle Poodiack in the #3 Peterboro Tool Co. Inc. sponsored Chevy, who had just claimed his first victory in the ALNRS at the last race at Seekonk Speedway and aDP Rivet Rookie of the Year contender Emily Packard of East Montpelier, VT in her #9 Northstar Fireworks sponsored Chevy.
Lap 8 would bring out the second caution of the night for a single car spin by the #5 of Johnson. On the restart rookie driver Nicoal Perreault would have trouble reeling in the power on her #19 Chevy. On the restart Bourgeois would once again jump out to the lead. Hot on his tail were Barrett followed by Logan, Gneiting and Poodiack. Logan would slip up on lap 11 as he would spin coming out of turn 2. Logan was able to keep his forward momentum and only lost 2 spots. The closing laps would see Barrett gaining ground on Bourgeois. It appeared as it was going to be a photo finish until Barrett spun exiting turn two coming to the checkers.
At the line it was Bourgeois followed by Gneiting, Poodiack, Logan and the #5 of Johnson who recovered from his earlier two spins to claim a top five finish.
The hardest hit of the night went to current aDP Rivet Rookie of the Year points leader Peter Portante of Plainville, CT. Portante unwillingly put his HANS device to the ultimate test as he slammed head on into the outside wall exiting turn two on the final lap of practice. After a brief stay in the infield care center Portante was released and was able to attend the drivers meeting later that night.
The ALNRS will be off next week and will head back to the half mile circle at the Adirondack Int. Speedway in Loweville, NY on Sept. 19.
Current point leader Paul Tuthill was unable to attend the race and now only leads Logan by a mere 29 points as the ALNRS heads into their final four races of the season. So stay as the battle for the 2009 ALNRS Championships wines down.
Sources: ALNRS PR