John Hayes Trounces Huge Tiger Field At Thunder Road; Joe Steffen Wins T-Road Title
For Immediate Release TR72-100702
Barre, VT - -Flying Tiger John Hayes was the class of a 52-car field on hand for Sunday's Parts Plus Thunder Road season finale. Hayes closed in on early leaders Marcel Gravel and Joe Steffen on lap 20 of the Subway Grand Slam Series event. The trio raced inches apart for eight more circuits before Hayes brushed outside of Gravel and took the lead to stay.
As Gravel and Steffen continued to dice for second, Travis Calkins, Reno Gervais and Roger Brown began their own charge to the front. When Gravel began to fade on lap 39, Gervais swung to the outside for third, with Calkins at his rear deck. Brown and Eric Pembroke eased into contention, while Hayes drew out to an eight-car length lead at the front.
Gervais and Calkins hit and spun in the final turn. Gervais rolled across the stripe in a cloud of smoke, but he was 12th when he got there. Calkins, stout throughout the race, fared less well, limping home 18th. Brown, Pembroke and Chip Grenier landed spots 3-5 behind Hayes and Steffen. Mike Bailey, Marcel Gravel, Davydd Welch, Craig Bushey and Joe Becker were next in line. Bushey, who had needed only to keep Becker in sight was crowned the Subway "Grand Slam" Series champion.
The heat winners, five in all, were Steffen, Grenier, Ray Stearns, Justin Hart and Reno Gervais. Steffen, worked hard by Hayes in second, won the semi-feature with Grenier third.
Lloyd Blakely of Barre won the Allen Lumber Street Stock battle, Brendan Moodie Jr of Wolcott won the war. Moodie got funneled into the turn four wall at one point, but battled back to get home in 14th, enough to stay safely ahead of David Allen and become the new track champion. Jamie Rabideau stayed close to Blakely for second, Fred Fleury was third.