Regional & Local Stars Gearing Up For Milk Bowl

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Two-time Vermont Milk Bowl winner and reigning Thunder Road track champion Jason Corliss (#66VT) is gunning for a third crown to cap another dominant season. (Alan Ward photo)

BARRE, Vt. —  The 58th Vermont Milk Bowl presented by Northfield Savings Bank is once again shaping up as the Northeast’s premier late model showcase.

Well-known regional racers and local heroes are eagerly throwing their names into the hat for “The Toughest Short Track Stock Car Race in North America” at Barre’s Thunder Road Int’l Speedbowl Oct. 4.

With nearly two weeks still to go, the early entry list is already filling up with regional American-Canadian Tour-type late model racers and Thunder Road stars.

Most of this year’s weekly Maplewood/Irving Oil Late Model competitors have signed up to defend their turf, including Barre’s Jason Corliss and Hinesburg’s Bobby Therrien, who have combined to win the last three Vermont Milk Bowls. They finished first and second in the Thunder Road standings this year.

Entries are also in from two-time “King of the Road” Scott Dragon of Milton along with top-10 point finishers Brendan Moodie, Tyler Cahoon, Matt White and Christopher Pelkey. Cahoon and Jim Morris are former Milk Bowl segment winners while Graniteville’s Stephen Donahue has victories at both Thunder Road and New Hampshire’s White Mountain Motorsports Park.

Among the invaders, Brooks Clark may be the best bet on the board. The unassuming veteran finished third and second in the last two Milk Bowls and won the 2019 Vermont Governor’s Cup. Clark made several late-season starts at Thunder Road to prepare for another charge at the sought-after kiss with a Vermont dairy cow.

Joel Hodgdon is returning to his roots for Vermont Milk Bowl weekend. The former Thunder Road Flying Tiger champion is in the hunt for the late model title at White Mountain Motorsports Park. He aims to bring the same speed to Barre.

As always, the Milk Bowl will be a regional affair. This year’s Midsummer Classic 250 winner Dillon Moltz was the first Milk Bowl entry. Multi-time Pro All Stars Series Champion Ben Rowe has entered the Milk Bowl for the first time in many years. Ryan Kuhn is the top ACT regular currently on the entry list. These drivers are trying to become the first non-Vermonter to win since Eddie MacDonald in 2014.

Also of note are two names returning from the sidelines for the Milk Bowl. Multi-time Thunder Road late model winner and Flying Tiger champion Shawn Fleury is climbing behind the wheel of a car recently purchased by his stepson Logan Powers. Meanwhile, Stephen Hodgdon will take the weekend off from his job as track tech inspector to barrel around the high banks.

The 58th Vermont Milk Bowl presented by Northfield Savings Bank is part of a three-day festival to cap Thunder Road’s 61st season. Mekkelsen RV Milk Bowl Friday kicks off the weekend Oct. 2 with the Pro All Stars Series Super Late Models, PASS Modifieds, Honey Badger Bar & Grill Street Stock Series, and North East Mini Stock Tour. Saturday is Booth Bros./H.P. Hood Milk Bowl Qualifying Day with the three-segment Milk Bowl on Sunday. A total of 10 divisions will compete throughout the weekend from the Maplewood/Irving Oil Late Models to the Junior Champ Karts.