WATERFORD, Conn. – An entertaining night of motorsports was on track Wednesday evening at Waterford Speedbowl, as the track hosted another mid-week Wild ‘n Wacky race program.
Marking the night were some memorable victories. Eddie Loomis was a first-time winner in the X-Cars, Ray Reed moved a step closer in his quest for a Super X-Car title and hometown driver Shelby Donovan recorded a win the first time the Mini Cup division visited the shoreline speedway. Mike Christopher Jr. added another win in a standout season in the INEX Legend Cars and Anthony Marvin took the victory in the INEX Bandolero division.
Christopher continued his pursuit of a record, earning his twelfth win of the Wild ‘n Wacky season on Wednesday night. More significantly, it marked his nineteenth victory of the year overall at the track, which is three victories shy of tying the INEX Legend Car division’s single season record set by Anthony Flannery in 2010.
Christopher started mid-pack in Wednesday’s 25-lap race, following the inside lane through into contention. He lined up in fourth position when the first caution flag came out on lap six, and was second for the next restart just a lap later. Christopher took the lead inside Mike Blaskey on lap nine and showed the way the remainder of the race. Joey Ternullo chased him to the checkered flag and finished second, and Blaskey was third.
Loomis had a memorable night in X-Car action, taking a popular first-ever win. He was among the top-five for most of the 25-lap feature, mixing it up with some of the division’s top drivers. He took the lead from Christopher Lee on lap 11, then withstood a torrid battle for the top spot over the next several circuits.
Wayne Shifflett along with Jordan Hadley, each multiple time race winners this year, closed in on Loomis and the three cars ran tightly together for three laps. Shifflett and Hadley came together in turn four on lap-16, causing each to have a tire go flat, enabling Loomis to pull ahead. He had to master a final restart with four laps remaining, holding back point leader Zac Thomas, who ended up second and Rich Nye, who finished third.
Reed recorded his third victory of the year as he chases a title in the Super X-Car division. Reed, the point leader, has been buoyed by a steady season. Wednesday he moved to the front on lap six after Marc Shafer battled Ken Downing for the top spot in a side-by-side battle over the opening laps.
After breaking through into the lead, it was not smooth sailing for Reed however, as Shane Peele challenged late. Peele was on Reed’s tail on lap 20, then pulled to his inside on lap 22. While Peele was attempting a pass for the lead, he slipped exiting turn two on lap 23, nearly spinning out. Peele recovered but dropped several lengths and Reed cruised over the final two circuits. Peele was second and Dave Yardley was third.
Marvin’s sixth INEX Bandolero triumph of the season came with Ken Morin Jr. stalking him every lap of the 20-lap feature. Marvin took command outside of Morin as the two raced side-by-side and completed the first lap. Although Morin was able to stay with Marvin, he was unable to find a way to make a pass.
The toughest part of the race may have been navigating lapped traffic, however Marvin did not falter. Morin finished on his bumper in second and Jonathon Puleo of Branford was third. Marvin leads Puleo in the championship standings.
Donovan checkered a 20-lap exhibition race by the Mini Cup division, which competes regularly at Seekonk (Mass.) Speedway. It was the first time the youth racing division ever competed at the Speedbowl. She took the lead on the second lap with an impressive three-wide maneuver on the bottom of the track. T.J. Moreshead finished in second with a solid performance and Shea Kulpa was third.