Devin Deshaies, the Bandito Dynamo, added yet another trophy to the 2018 collection he has been making over the season. The big question is: who can remember the last feature winner who wasn’t named Deshaies???
This week, Dynamo Deshaies not only had to win the race, he had to avoid a degree of early wreckage that nearly totaled the Bandolero field in the Bandits. But persevere he did.
First lap carnage saw the field more than cut in half. When they restarted, only Deshaies, Isaiah Newcomb, Giovanni Ruggiero (one driver who has also secured a feature win this year) and Colin Floyd remained out of eleven who showed up to take the green.
As the field leapt out of the starting box at the beginning, Riley Caron attempted to make it three-wide at the front, outside polesitter Brayden Meserve and wingman Joey LeMay. He had to fall back and the Meserve/LeMay combo went door-to-door onto the backstretch and around into turn four. But Ruggerio spun in turn two and collected Brent Robidoux, who became the first casualty headed pitside. Caron also was lost for the evening.
They relined for a complete race restart. LeMay and Meservey were door-to-door once again with Deshaies all over their bumpers. But the leaders got together in turn three starting a chain reaction which had cars dodgin in all directions to avoid. Nickolas Frechette came to a halt in turn three and Collin Vanasse had nowhere to go, bouncing off Frechette and lost a fender, then went up to the waly between turns three and four. The red flag came out and emergency personnel jumped into the scene. When the final analysis came down, Meservey, LeMay, Frechette, Vanasse and Isabella Newcomb were in the pits for the duration. In one lap with two cautions, 64 percent of the field had been eliminated.
Deshaies took the pole for the lap one restart with Ruggerio on his shoulder. Isaiah Newcomb and Floyd were at their backs. On the green Newcomb maneuvered under Ruggerio and gave chase to Deshaies. Devin began moving away while Newcomb and Ruggerio dueled over second.
However, Newcomb began to loosen up, especially in turn four and he was forced high in the turn on lap four. Ruggerio seized the moment and dived under and into second. Five laps in, Deshaies had a half-straightaway lead. Two laps later, it was a full straight. Newcomb fought the car back up to challenge Ruggerio on lap nine but the problem continued and he spun in turn two as Deshaies led by a full straight.
Deshaies pulled away from Ruggerio on the green and Newcomb’s tires held after cooling down in the caution: he got under Ruggerio and the held a wheel-to-wheel challenge which went a lap and into turn two on the next circuit before Newcomb could win the spot. By now, Deshaies was 20 cars out and opening the gap.
The field was single file,a dn the final four laps were a high-speed parade toward the checkers. It continued until Newcomb’s looseness returned on his final pass through turn four. He was able, however, to hold on to it and kept Ruggerio at bay for a second place finish. Giovanni ran home third with Floyd claiming fourth.