Amy Arsenault held off ever-tough Pure Stock champion Doug Benoit and equally persistent Greg Perry to garner the first feature win on the season. It was a green-to-checkers win for Arsenault, but not an easy one. Outside polesitter Max Bergstrom just would not go away for two-thirds of the feature as the storm clouds gathered in the form of Perry and Benoit. Benoit started third and spent his time seeking an opportunity as Arsenault and Bergstrom traded shots. Perry slewed through the field from sixth to get past The Outlaw (Danny Massa) going into lap eleven. Bergstrom and Benoit had been swapping second and third since the early going; now Perry arrived to further complicate the placement.
A lap 5 restart saw Arsenault and Benoit sitting wheel-to-wheel with Bergstrom and The Outlaw behind them. Perry and Mike Henriques followed. The front was filled with threats to win based on their racing history. Amy won the lap 20 restart and Bergstrom looked under Benoit. As they went door-to-door, Henriques was under Massa and Perry was trying to be patient behind them. Henriques escaped Massa and Perry got underneath. Arsenault had generated a five-car lead before caution flew again, with 17 laps remaining.
On the restart, she pulled ahead, Bergstrom got under Benoit seeking second and there was a three-wide brawl for fourth between Perry, Massa and Henriqiues with Aaron Plemons on their collective bumpers. The three-wide went on for two laps before Perry pulled ahead, but Massa and Henriques charged back and it was three cars side-by-side again.
Arsenault continued to hold a three-car lead over Bergstrom who was being troubled by a persistent Benoit. Benoit was on the high side and Perry eased out of the trio to look under Benoit. He edged in and then nosed out on lap 13. Plemons had threadded his way into fourth and now sneaked his nose in under Perry. Perry pulled away just before Nicholas Mignone spun out i9n turn ten.
The lap 15 restart had Bergstrom alongside Arsenault, Plemons to the high side of Perry and Benoit sitting under Henriques. On the green, Bergstrom took a nose over the stripe but Amy was back again in turn two and then pressing forward. Behind them it was another triple with Perry, Plemons and Henriques.
Perry disengaged to pass Bergstrom into second while Benoit charged back up to third, passing Henriques and Plemons as Massa swung into fourth behind him. He began a stubborn pursuit of Perry while Henriques got past Plemons to begin harassing Massa.
Perry went to Arsenault’s bumper and began looking alternately high and low. Benoit ran a close third while Massa and Plemons were battling alongside each other. Henriques festered at their bumpers. Plemons fell back and Henriques ducked in underneath.
Perry was all over Arsenault’s bumper as, with four to go, Plemons spun in turn four, getting himself sideways and bringing caution.
Arsenault had the low side and on the green, Benoit ducked under Perry, looking to steal second as Perry got a bit loose. Henriques and Massa were now running neck and neck over third. With two to go, Henriques edged back and Marissa Morgan got under Massa looking to grab sixth.
Arsenault was running in clean air as Benoit and Perry were engaging over second as they went into the white flag lap. She claimed the checkers, but it took the electronics to reveal Benoit a .054-second winner of second over Perry. Henriques and Massa completed the top five, with Morgan sixth. Rounding out the top ten were: Cliff Avila, Tommy Blackwell, Lenfender Souza and Missy Charette.