Seekonk Speedway Race Magazine Seekonk Speedway 9.8.18 - Page 37

Mike Henriques and Ava Chouinard battled for the first half of the Pure Stock feature until Chouinard spun midway through the race, leaving Henriques to battle The Outlaw, Danny Massa, Jr. and Lenny Souza the rest of the way. Chouinard pitted and returned to finish the race, while Massa grabbed secon place, holding off an insistent Souza. Max Bergstrom was fourth and DJ Pires outlasted rival Doug Benoit for fifth. (Benoit leads the division by better than a single race worth of Points and Pires, in second, is seeking to close the gap.)

Chouinard led from the pole, escaping from under Tommy Blackwell out of the starting box. Marissa Morgan pushed under Blackwell from the second row to snare second before Henriques came uip from row three to ease her back to third. Dave Desrosiers came up and followed suit to steal third as Morgan got loose and wiggled long enough for Desrosiers to get by. But Massa, Ed Perry and Pires ganged up on her and pusheD Morgan back to seventh on lap four.

Chouinard went oput to a two-car lead while Henriques, Desrosiers and Massa ran bumper-to-bumper behind her and the field went single-file. Henriques pushed hard and ran up to Ava’s bumper as Perry moved up to Massa in fifth place. The order continued for several laps as pires moved in on Perry, with Sousa and Morgan in pursuit. But Pires spun out of turn four on lap 10 after contact with Sousa.

On the restart, Chouinard and Henriques brawled it out for the lead, going door-to-door. Chouinard pressed ahead, bit by bit but on lap eleven she broke into a spin, collecting Desrosiers, along with Bergstrom, Blackwell and Missy Charette. Chouinard was able to pit and return, but Desrosiers was forced to retire for the night.

Henriques won the drag race down the front stretch with Massa and Bergstrom then looked underneath but couldn’t go there. Behind him Benoit was on Blackwell’s high side. As Henriques went to a three-car lead, Sousa was under The Outlaw looking for second. He succeeded and then Bergstrom stuck his nose under.

Another spin took two attempts to resumne racing on lap 12, but finally Henriques had a half-car on Massa, followed by Sousa, Bergstrom and Benoit, who tucked in under Bergstrom. Henriques ground his way slowly ahead of Massa as Sousa waited impatiently for an opportunity. Mike pushed into the lead, but Nicholas Mignone spun to bring it all back for a lap 14 restart.

This time, Henriques was in front coming across the stripe and Sousa ducked under Massa in turn two. They went wheel-to-wheel for a lap before Sousa could claim second. By then, Henriques had a three-car lead. Massa pursued Sousa and was equally pursued by Benoit. Bergstrom was fifth and behind him, Pires was coming around Amy Arsenault.

Henriques had four carlengths of insuracne over sousa but with three laps remaining, Charette was around out of turn one. The restart went back to lap four and Sousa lined up outside Henriques with Massa and Benoit behind them. Row three saw Bergstrom under Arsenault. Pires and Randy Laplante were in pursuit positions behind them.

Henriques and Sousa battled, but Lenny gave way and Massa was able to shoot underneath him on Henriques’ bumper. Pires ducked under Benoit and Morgan got under Arsenault. With two to go, Massa had his nose ahead of Sousa. Bergstrom ran behind thjem while Pires had moved past Benoit, who now was fighting it out with Morgan, who was in the low groove as the field crossed under the white flag into the final lap.

The top five remained the same, but Benoit was able to get thirty-five thousandths of a second ahead of Morgan before they flew under the checkers, giving him sixth behind Pires and relegating Morgan to seventh. Arsenault was at Morgan’s back, followed by Laplante and Blackwell.