STURGEON BAY, Wis. – With the pressure on, Billy LeMieux rose to the occasion Saturday at Thunderhill Raceway.
Not only did he win in the street stocks, raising the bounty to $300, but he also won the IMCA Stock Car feature Saturday night at Thunderhill. Other feature winners were Todd Dart (modifieds), Cody Rass (sport mods) and Dave Schmidt (hobby stocks).
Billy LeMieux called his shot early in the week, saying he would make it four feature wins in a row in the Street Stocks and he didn’t disappoint. Aaron Thornton raced past pole sitter Corey Sampone on lap five for the lead of the 15 lap main event. Thornton looked to have the upper hand as LeMieux struggled in traffic early.
Out of no where with five to go LeMieux muscled his way into the runner up spot and set his sites on Thornton. With two laps remaining LeMieux snatched the lead away working the low groove and took the win in the caution free event. Kevin Luedtke snuck by at the line for second, followed by Thornton, Von Eytcheson and Jeremy Dubois.
It was all clear sailing up front for IMCA Sport Mod driver Rass. Rass jumped to the lead and never let go, leading all 20 laps en route to his first career feature win in only his second year in the class. Co-point leader Chris Budzban made a late race charge in the closing laps on Rass but had to settle for second in the caution free event. Defending champion Bernie Reinhardt was third, the other co-point leader Ryan LeMieux raillied late for fourth and Jesse Kroll rounded out the top five.
In the IMCA Stock Car main it was LeMieux jumping to huge lead early on with Bret Koehler giving chase. LeMieux checked out but a caution with seven laps remaining set up a dash to checker. Koehler used this to his advantage working down low and to the lead. LeMieux came charging back on the outside to reclaim the top spot.
LeMieux went unchallenged the remainder of the event to score his second feature win of the night. Koehler came home second, Charlie Kroll kept the points chase tight with a third place, point leader Shawn Havel was fourth and Dylan Heilmann had another strong top five.
Tyler Hackett was able to power by Greg Gretz for the lead early in the IMCA Modified feature. His reign up front wouldn’t last long as six-time champ Todd Dart came slicing by down low taking the lead. Dart then went to the top side and pulled away for the win. The race went caution free. It’s Dart’s 49th victory in the modifieds at Thunderhill. Hackett had his best run of the season placing second, James Tebon, Gretz and Mark Joski completed the top five.
Dave Schmidt worked the high side to perfection in the IMCA Hobby Stock feature as he dominated the event, winning by half a lap. The win was his first of the season in the caution free race. Point leader Jeremy Jauquet rallied late to place second, Derek Moede, brother Marcus Moede and Travis Lumaye rounded out the top five.