BARRE, Vt. – The 57th Vermont Milk Bowl presented by Northfield Savings Bank is already shaping up as one of the most star-studded auto racing events of the season in the Northeast.
Numerous champions, former Milk Bowl winners, and rising standouts have already sent in their entries and will attempt to qualify for the Milk Bowl at Thunder Road Int’l Speedbowl on Sept. 28-29.
For many fans, the main man to watch on Milk Bowl Weekend will be Bubba Pollard. As perhaps the most successful driver in modern short track racing, Pollard is making his first attempt at the Vermont Milk Bowl in a car prepared by Joey Polewarczyk Racing. He will try to add to a résumé that includes wins in the Canadian Short Track Nationals, the Oxford 250, and the All-American 400.
Thunder Road is never easy on invaders, and the Milk Bowl will be no exception. At least five past winners of the Milk Bowl will try to add their name to the Barre granite monument once again. They include three-time winner Patrick Laperle, two-time and defending Milk Bowl winner Jason Corliss, 2010 winner Joey Polewarczyk Jr., 2009 winner John Donahue and 2006 winner Brent Dragon.
Several of the most accomplished racers in Vermont are also trying to break through the glass ceiling and claim their first Milk Bowl triumph. Defending ACT Late Model Tour Champion Scott Payea, defending King of the Road Scott Dragon, perennial Thunder Road title contender Trampas Demers and multi-time ACT winner Jimmy Hebert are all on the entry list. Former King of the Road Bobby Therrien is back to try and avenge last year’s heartbreak where Corliss stole the overall win in the final corner.
A number of Thunder Road locals will join Dragon and Demers in defending against the all-star invaders. This year’s Vermont Governor’s Cup winner Brooks Clark has entered the event. So have top-10 point runners Kyle Pembroke, Tyler Cahoon, Christopher Pelkey and Marcel J. Gravel. Former Flying Tiger champion Brendan Moodie and former Milk Bowl segment winner Jim Morris will also represent the Late Model ranks.
Drivers who’ve had success at other tracks around the region are trying to duplicate it at Thunder Road. Multi-time Devil’s Bowl Speedway champion Josh Masterson has entered the event. Two top-10 point drivers from New Hampshire’s White Mountain Motorsports Park, Stephen Donahue and Mike Bailey, return home for the biggest event of the season.
The Donahue’s are one of two father-son duos entered as Marcel D. Gravel has joined his son on the entry list. Alexendre Tardif recently wrapped up a top-five in the Autodrome Chaudiere Late Model points while Mike Benevides has been a regular at Connecticut’s Thompson Speedway this season. Joel Hodgdon has raced everywhere in his first year behind the wheel of a Late Model and could be a dark horse. Mason Mitchell, a champion in the ARCA Menards Series, is looking for some redemption in his second attempt at qualifying for the Milk Bowl.