Audet, Barrows win Devil’s Bowl races

TROY AUDET OF Bridport was a first-time winner in the O’Reilly Auto Parts Limited Sportsman division at Devil’s Bowl Speedway in West Haven on June 12.

WEST HAVEN — Bridport’s Troy Audet and Middlebury’s Jake Barrows won features at Devil’s Bowl Speedway on Saturday, while Brandon’s Joey Scarborough posted a second and a third in the evening’s twin main events, and Orwell’s Tim LaDuc took third in one of them.

Track officials described a smooth, fast surface for the West Haven oval that led to exciting stock car racing, with a number of lead changes and a few dust-ups.

Audet had to work hard to prevail in a 25-lap Limited Sportsman race extended an extra lap by a green and white checkered finish. It was Audet’s first Limited Sportsman win after moving up from the Mini Sprint class.

Four restarts in the late going set up West Rutland’s Scott Fitzgerald for multiple challenges for the lead, but Audet withstood them all for the win, with FitzGerald settling for second. Shoreham’s John Gosselin drove to third place. Twenty-four cars finished the race, and Middlebury’s Austin Comes (12th) was the only other local driver in the top half.

Barrows picked up his first win since 2019 in a back-and-forth 20-lap Mini Stock race. Wrecks and mechanical failures wiped out 16 of the 29 starters, and Barrows took and lost the lead twice before taking charge for good. Five other drivers held the lead at some point in the event.

Cornwall’s Brian Blake was fifth, while Leicester’s Derrick Counter (seventh) and Orwell’s Daryl Gebo (ninth) also cracked the top 10.  

The top Sportsman Modified class ran twice. In a race that saw five lead changes, North Bennington’s Marty Kelly took the first round, while LaDuc edged out Scarborough for third with a late charge, and Scarborough, who led early on, settled for fourth.

Brandon’s Vince Quenneville and Salisbury’s Mike Palmer ran 9-10, and Leicester’s Adam Piper, another early front-runner, was 12th.

In the second Sportsman Modified 20-lapper, New York’s Demetrios Drellos, fifth in the first race after getting a flat tire while leading, picked up his third Devil’s Bowl victory of 2021, winning a three-way duel in the final few laps. Scarborough settled for third, and Shoreham’s Jimmy Ryan was fifth. 

Middlebury’s Justin Comes was fifth, Palmer was eighth, and Quenneville finished 11th.

In the 20-lap Super Stock race, Fair Haven’s Chris Murray came back to edge Benson’s Mark Norris on the final lap to claim his four straight win in the series. Addison’s Chuck Bradford took fifth, and Orwell’s Ronnie Alger was eighth.

In the 15-lap Mini Sprint race, winner Austin Chaves of Chester held off a late charge from Orwell’s Hanson. Chaves, a former champion, plans to step away from racing and ran with a For Sale sign on his car. Monkton’s Kaidin White was fifth, Bridport’s Gage Provencher came in seventh, and Orwell’s Roger LaDuc took ninth.

Devil’s Bowl Speedway returns to action on Saturday, June 19, at 7 p.m. with the annual “Topless Night” Father’s Day Weekend special event: the Sportsman Modified and Limited Sportsman classes will race without roofs for a different look and feel. All other weekly classes will also be on the card.

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