Short track veteran and former Oxford 250 winner Eddie MacDonald topped a list of four feature winners on Saturday as the inaugural New England Short Track Showdown was completed at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon.  

The Granite State Pro Stock Series, Valenti Modified Racing Series, North East Mini Stock Tour and Street Stock Showdown Series were all in action on the famed oval.   

MacDonald, of Rowley, Mass., earned his 10th career win at NHMS in the Granite State Pro Stock Series feature. For each of those victories, New Gloucester’s Rollie LaChance has served MacDonald as crew chief. It’s been a winning combination for years. 

MacDonald took command for the final time over 2016 Pro All-Stars Series (PASS) North champion D.J. Shaw on a late-race restart and hung on for top honors. Shaw settled for second, while Massachusetts native Matt Swanson finished third. 

Nine-time PASS champion Ben Rowe, of Turner, was involved in a hard wreck on lap two when a car ahead of him blew its engine and covered the track with oil. He was uninjured. Other Maine drivers in the field included Ellsworth’s Wyatt Alexander (10th), Joe Decker, of Chesterville (11th) and Phil Richardson, of Hermon (21st). 

Pitkat prevails in Modifieds

Woody Pitkat came out on top in a hotly-contested 50-lap tilt for the Valenti Modified Racing Series. Several veteran open-wheel pilots including Ted Christopher, Steve Masse, Eric Goodale and Dave Schnieder joined Pitkat as they all drafted in and out of the lead.  

At the finish, it was Pitkat who claimed the victory after an intense battle. After the race, the Connecticut driver wasn’t exactly sure how he made the right moves to win.

I don’t know,” Pitkat said. “A guy like me is always thinking. Sometimes, you overthink and one of these days that’s going to bite me. There’s just so much going on inside the car. It’s crazy.”

Christopher, who has 10 career victories at NHMS, finished second. Masse, Zane Zeiner and Geoff Gernhard rounded out the top five finishers. 

Trombley tops NEMST battle

Winter Harbor’s Justin Trombley rose to the top of the field in the Northeast Mini Stock Tour portion of Saturday’s Showdown. Trombley held off Pitkat and New Hampshire’s Cody LeBlanc to score the victory.

Multi-time NEMST champion Emerson Cayer and two-time race winner Nick Manathis were among the leaders all race long, while Connecticut Modified star Pitkat (driving the No. 91 Dodge Neon in relief for an ill Jamie Heath of Waterford), battled with the leaders.

Other Maine-based finishers in the race include former Oxford Plains Speedway Mini Stock champion Justin Larsen (25th), Seth Drown, of Lyman (30th), and Nick Bissell, of Palmero (31st). 

Hutchings Dominates in Street Stock

Connecticut’s Corey Hutchings dominated the 30-lap Street Stock Showdown Series main event to win over fellow Connecticut driver Frank L’Etoile and John Hanafin of Quincy, Mass.

I’m hot, tired and I just can’t describe how happy that I am,” said a worn out and emotional Hutchings in Victory Lane. “Who ever thought Street Stocks would run at New Hampshire Motor Speedway? Now, we have won here.”

Oxford Plains Speedway standout Kurt Hewins of Leeds had a top five run going until a tire issue led to contact against the outside retaining wall. Hewins salvaged the day with a solid 12th-place finish.

Other Maine drivers in the field included Lebanon’s Chris Harding (10th), Sanford’s Robby Bodwell (11th) and Lebanon’s Patrick Tanguay (18th). 

Eddie MacDonald
Former Oxford 250 winner Eddie MacDonald, of Rowley, MA, leads the field into Turn 1 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Sat., July 1. MacDonald won the Granite State Pro Stock Series race on Saturday during the inaugural New England Short Track Showdown. 

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