County racers battle for top at Devil’s Bowl

WEST HAVEN — Middlebury’s Todd Stone edged Steve Miller of Vergennes in the 30-lap Central Vermont Motorcycles Late Model division feature race at Devil’s Bowl Speedway on Friday.
Stone, the former Modified division track champion, claimed his first 2015 victory after taking the lead from Miller on a Lap 14 restart. He then held off Miller and others after a final restart with five laps remaining.
Miller, returning to racing this summer after several years away from the sport, scored his best 2015 finish by withstanding challenges from Bobby Therrien and Robert Bryant Jr. in the final laps. Therrien finished third in his first Devil’s Bowl appearance of the season, followed by Bryant and Bristol’s Josh Masterson.
In the 35-lap Bond Auto Parts Modified feature, Chazy, N.Y., driver Leon Gonyo cruised to the win, his first at Devil’s Bowl this summer, but another local driver, Brandon’s Vince Quenneville Jr., had a strong effort.
Quenneville sliced his way through traffic to finish as the runner-up, while series point leader Ron Charlton of New York took third place.
Robert Gordon of Milton made it three wins on the year in the 20-lap Brileya’s Chrysler-Jeep Renegade division feature. For the second week in a row, Gordon stole the victory away in the final stages of the race, passing Scott FitzGerald with only three laps left in the race. FitzGerald, of West Rutland, settled for the runner-up spot, followed by rookie Shawn Franklin.
Chris LaVair of Saranac Lake, N.Y., took his third straight win in the Portland Glass Mini Stock division. LaVair and Addison’s Chuck Bradford did battle through two 10-lap, cumulatively scored segments that ended with a tiebreaker that favored LaVair. LaVair and Bradford each tallied segment finishes of first and second for a low total score of three points, but LaVair’s better finish in the final race gave him the nod for the win. 
Devil’s Bowl Speedway is back in action on Independence Day weekend with two big events, each with fireworks displays, on Friday, July 3 and Sunday, July 5. The half-mile asphalt oval hosts the Coca-Cola Firecracker event on Friday night at an early 6:30 p.m. start, and on Sunday, July 5, the 0.3-mile infield “Dirt Track at Devil’s Bowl” opens for its first race of the season with the WhistlePig Straight Rye Whiskey Special at 6 p.m.
The winners and local finishers this past Friday were:
• Bond Auto Parts Modified Feature (35 laps): 1. Gonyo; 2. Quenneville; 6. Jimmy Ryan, Whiting; 9. Dave Snow, Brandon.
• Central Vermont Motorcycles Late Model Feature (30 laps): 1. Stone; 2. Miller; 5. Masterson; 6. Jamie Aube, Ferrisburgh.
• Brileya’s Chrysler-Jeep Renegade Feature (20 laps): 1. Gordon.
• Portland Glass Mini Stock Feature (10 laps x2): 1. LaVair; 2. Bradford; 4. Bradley Bertrand, Ferrisburgh.

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