Isiah Newcomb led the Bandolero Bandits division from green to checkers enroute to his first-ever career win. But he had plenty of competition along the way from Giovanni Ruggerio. Ruggerio, who seems to be grabbing second every event, and Riley Caron, also threatening the front every week this season, combined in making Newcomb uneasy. Riley, in fact, started outside Isiah on the front row and threw every sort of annoyance he could muster at the race leader. Newcomb, however, had his eyes firmly fixed on the finish line and survived a late restart that saw Ruggerio steal second from Caron. Devin Deshaies also managed to deprive Caron of position and sneaked in for third, edging Riley back to fourth while Brayden Meserve fought through for the fifth spot.
Newcomb and Caron came out of the starting box and down the frontstretch running door-to-door before Newcomb took the lead in turn one. Caron settled in at second, just ahead of Nikolas Frechette and Nathan Smith. Behind them, Ruggerio was battling underneath Meserve for fifth. Ruggerio won the battle, then Collin Vanasse charged past as well. Giovanni looked under Frechette and won the position going through turn four, elevating him to third. Frechette, Smith, Vanasse, Meservey and Deshaies stretched out behind them in single file.
The pace line ran two laps in order into lap seven. Deshaies, who was not showing his usual speed then found his horses and started to move up. After a ninth-place start, thanks to his multi wins on the month-old season, Deshaies had been mired in traffic, but with the field becoming quite spread out, he picked up the pace and began to earnestly pursue on lap eight. He picked off a position per lap, heading after Newcomb.
Isiah had been enjoying the clear air and now had worked his way to a ten-car lead over Caron, who was about 20 lengths up on Ruggerio. Giovanni had a whopping 25 spaces on Frechette and Deshaies was behind them.
However, what had seemed like a lazy cruise to the checkers came to an end with two laps remaining. Newcomb’s brother Joel spun in turn four and had to be pushed to the pits. Isiah’s long lead collapsed as Caron lined up on his shoulder. Ruggerio and Frechette made up the second row with Deshaies and Meserve behind them. First try at the restart saw Brent Robidoux and Vanasse get together coming out of turn four, bringing caution and another try at the restart. With the field under the double sticks, it made for a green-white-checker restart.
It was a barn-burner. Newcomb and Caron went wheel-to-wheel down the frontstretch. Caron nosed ahead, then Newcomb won it back and nosed out himself. He went back to the front coming out of turn two and Caron got stuck on the outside: both Ruggerio and Deshaies shot underneath into second and third before Riley could drop in at fourth.
The final lap was like a rugby match with bodies flying evrywhere and each car trying to battle past the car ahead. Through the swirl, Newcomb was able to pull ahead to secure his career first win, while the top four all finished on the same second on the electronic timers.
Sixth on the event was Nathan Smith, followed by Frechette, Vanasse, Robidoux and Collin Floyd.