Elmo Reckner Ends 25 Year Drought At Devils Bowl

WEST HAVEN, VT – Devil’s Bowl Speedway fans caught a glimpse of the past and the future all in one night on Saturday, May 15, as the list of feature winners ran all over the age spectrum. Elmo Reckner, 60, ran to his first win in Vermont in nearly 25 years, while 14-year-old Joe Venditti entered the record books for the first time. Other winners during the event included Andrew FitzGerald, Chris Sumner, Ray Hanson, and Eric Leno, whose ages each fell somewhere in the middle between Reckner and Venditti.

Ballston Lake, N.Y. veteran Reckner started eighth in the 30-lap Sportsman Modified race, and while he worked his way through traffic, hometown favorite Billy Lussier set the pace. Lussier led the first half of the race but he was never alone up front, and Reckner made his move after a restart on lap 16 following a lengthy battle. Reckner’s Larry Gallipo-owned car stayed consistent, and he was able to hold off sophomore driver Josh Masterson for the win.

For Reckner, the win was the second of his career at Devil’s Bowl, and his first since a Pro Street Stock victory on July 21, 1996 – a span of 24 years, nine months, and 24 days – the seventh-longest winless period in Devil’s Bowl history. The runner-up showing was the best result of Masterson’s young career on dirt; he was previously a two-time Late Model champion on the former asphalt track at Devil’s Bowl.

Alex Bell drove a solid race to finish third, for his first podium finish since July 2019. Justin Comes finished fourth, and Connor Cleveland drove from 16th to complete the top five. Don Mattison was sixth ahead of Joey Scarborough, early leader Lussier, Tanner Siemons, and Vince Quenneville.

James Hanson was uninjured in a rollover on lap 7. Qualifying heats were won by Lussier, Bell, and Siemons. Michael Wagner-Fitzgerald took the consolation round, and Floyd Billington won the last-chance B-Main.




Scotia, N.Y.’s Joe Venditti scored a popular first win in the 25-lap feature for the O’Reilly Auto Parts Limited Sportsman division. In just his third start at Devil’s Bowl, the 14-year-old needed only four laps to make his way from sixth starting position to the lead, and he ran away from the field for the landmark victory.

Austin Comes fell one position short of back-to-back wins as the runner-up, and Dakota Green was a career-best third. Evan Roberts and Troy Audet were next in line, while the top 10 was completed in order by Melvin Pierson, Anthony Ryan, Scott FitzGerald, Jeff White, and Bob Kilburn. Green, Roberts, and FitzGerald won the heats, John Gosselin took the consi, and Randy Ryan won the B-Main.

West Rutland, Vt.’s Andrew FitzGerald nailed down his second Super Stock win of the season in a 20-lap race. Previous winner Josh LeClaire finished second with Mark Norris third. Paul Braymer and rookie Chuck Bradford had a good fight for fourth, which went Braymer’s way. Kevin Elliot was sixth, followed by Ronnie Alger, Matt Monaghan, Andy Botala, and Griff Mahoney. Brett Wood walked away unhurt from a scary hit into the Turn 3 wall that left him upside-down.

Ripton, Vt.’s Chris Sumner was the runaway winner of the 20-lap Summit Up Construction Mini Stock feature. Sumner scrambled from ninth start position into the lead in just three laps and never looked back. Chris Conroy finished a distant second with Tim Simonds closing fast in third place. Aaron Bunker and Craig Kirby completed the top five, ahead of Willie Rice, Daryl Gebo, Brian Blake, Chase Allen, and Derrick Counter.

Orwell, Vt.’s Ray Hanson took his second win of the young season in the 15-lap feature for the Friend Construction 500cc Mini Sprint division. Hanson was dogged by runner-up Austin Chaves for much of the race, with Kamden Duffy and Kaidin White in tow. The next six positions were filled by rookies Vern Woodard, Gage Provencher, Lynn Sumner, Tommy Kasuba, Kris Severance, and Eric Paige. Chaves and Hanson won the heats.

Whiting, Vt.’s Eric Leno won one of the most competitive Enduro Series races in recent memory, running to his first-ever win in the series’ 50-lap opener. Leno started 36th on the 40-car field and dodged wrecks and spun cars on his way through heavy traffic in the survival-of-the-fittest race. Eddie Bruno, Cagney Hamblett, and Rocky Francis took turns leading the early laps before a crash took them all out of contention.

Brent Wilbur, Matt Wade, and Leno snuck by the pileup at lap 17 to begin an entertaining fight for the win, with each leading laps. Leno took over at lap 38 and was out front for the rest of the race. Wade beat Wilbur by two feet for second place. Jason Vezina finished fourth as the last driver on the lead lap, and Ryan Benoit was fifth, one lap behind. Hamblett finished sixth, followed by Zach Stone, Kelley Barrows, Kevin Wade, and Ryan Patch. The next Enduro Series race is scheduled for Saturday, June 5.

Devil’s Bowl Speedway returns to action on Saturday, May 22 at 7:00 p.m. with all five weekly divisions including a special $500-to-win purse for the Limited Sportsmen. Grandstand admission will be $12 for adults and $5 for children (12 and under). Infield drive-in parking, weather permitting, will be $20 for adults and free for kids. Tickets will be available online at https://buytickets.at/devilsbowlspeedway and at the speedway on race day.

Devil’s Bowl Speedway is located on Route 22A in West Haven, Vt., four miles north of U.S. Route 4, Exit 2, and just 20 minutes from Rutland, Vt. For more information, visit www.DevilsBowlSpeedwayVT.com or call (802) 265-3112. Devil’s Bowl Speedway is on Facebook at facebook.com/DevilsBowlSpeedway, and on Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat at @DevilsBowlSpeed; follow the action using the #DevilsBowl hashtag.

 

UNOFFICIAL RESULTS

Devil’s Bowl Speedway – West Haven, Vt.

Saturday, May 15, 2021

 

Sportsman Modified Feature (30 laps)

Pos.-(Start)-Driver-Hometown

# – denotes rookie

1. (8) Elmo Reckner, Ballston Lake, N.Y.

2. (6) Josh Masterson, Bristol, Vt.

3. (3) Alex Bell, Cambridge, N.Y.

4. (12) Justin Comes, Middlebury, Vt.

5. (16) Connor Cleveland, Corinth, N.Y.

6. (15) Don Mattison, Wells, Vt.

7. (10) Joey Scarborough, Brandon, Vt.

8. (2) Billy Lussier, Fair Haven, Vt.

9. (1) Tanner Siemons, Orford, N.H.

10. (17) Vince Quenneville, Brandon, Vt.

11. (22) # Johnny Bruno, Castleton, Vt.

12. (20) # Anthony Warren, Shoreham, Vt.

13. (21) Michael Wagner-Fitzgerald, Gansevoort, N.Y.

14. (7) Brian Whittemore, Pittsford, Vt.

15. (23) Brent Warren, Salisbury, Vt.

16. (27) Adam Piper, Leicester, Vt.

17. (26) Floyd Billington, South Glens Falls, N.Y.

18. (4) Gene Pierson Jr., East Corinth, Vt.

19. (28) Todd Randlett, Holderness, N.H.

20. (18) Adam Pierson, East Corinth, Vt.

21. (13) Justin Stone, Middlebury, Vt.

22. (24) Jimmy Ryan, Shoreham, Vt.

23. (9) Mike Palmer, Salisbury, Vt.

24. (19) Demetrios Drellos, Queensbury, N.Y.

25. (29) Marty Kelly III, North Bennington, Vt.

26. (5) Jim Introne Jr., Hartford, N.Y.

27. (11) James Hanson, Orwell, Vt.

28. (14) Tim LaDuc, Orwell, Vt.

29. (30) Frank Hoard III, Manchester Center, Vt.

30. (25) Mike Fisher, Castleton, Vt.

Did Not Qualify (3): # Shawn McPhee, Rutland, Vt.; Pat Jones, Altamont, N.Y.; # Bryant Moore, Greenwich, N.Y.

Lap Leaders: Tanner Siemons, pole; Billy Lussier, 1-16; Elmo Reckner, 17-30. (2 lead changes among 3 drivers)

Cautions (6): Laps 3, 3, 7 [red], 16, 21, 24.

Heat Winners: Billy Lussier, Alex Bell, Tanner Siemons

Consi Winner: Michael Wagner-Fitzgerald

B-Main Winner: Floyd Billington

 

O’Reilly Auto Parts Limited Sportsman Feature (25 laps)

Pos.-(Start)-Driver-Hometown

1. (9) Joe Venditti, Scotia, N.Y.

2. (10) Austin Comes, Middlebury, Vt.

3. (3) Dakota Green, Cambridge, N.Y.

4. (7) Evan Roberts, Fletcher, Vt.

5. (15) Troy Audet, Bridport, Vt.

6. (14) Melvin Pierson, East Corinth, Vt.

7. (8) Anthony Ryan, Benson, Vt.

8. (5) Scott FitzGerald, West Rutland, Vt.

9. (1) Jeff White, Rutland, Vt.

10. (13) Bob Kilburn, Fair Haven, Vt.

11. (19) John Gosselin, Shoreham, Vt.

12. (11) A.J. Munger, Benson, Vt.

13. (12) Cody O’Brien, Springfield, Vt.

14. (16) Beau Reeves, Plattsburgh, N.Y.

15. (22) Justin Lilly, Castleton, Vt.

16. (20) Bill Duprey, Hydeville, Vt.

17. (23) James Venditti III, Scotia, N.Y.

18. (24) Randy Ryan, Orwell, Vt.

19. (2) Shawn Phelps, Richmond, Vt.

20. (21) Joe Kemp, Clarendon, Vt.

21. (18) Josh Bussino, Fair Haven, Vt.

22. (9) Larry Gallipo, West Rutland, Vt.

23. (17) Steve Pope, Shoreham, Vt.

24. (4) Craig Wholey, Bolton Landing, N.Y.

Did Not Qualify (10): Gary English, Salisbury, Vt.; Kyle Kerr, Shoreham, Vt.; Katrina Bean, Benson, Vt.; Bryon Linendoll, West Pawlet, Vt.; Matt Jordan, Cambridge, N.Y.; William Lussier, Fair Haven, Vt. (substitute for Mike McGinn); Timmy Aldrighetti, Bethel, Vt.; Josh Paige, Orwell, Vt.; Samantha Mulready, Cambridge, N.Y.; Russ Farr, Granville, N.Y.

Lap Leaders: Jeff White, 1-3; Joe Venditti, 4-25. (1 lead change among 2 drivers)

Cautions (3): Laps 1, 3, 9.

Heat Winners: Dakota Green, Evan Roberts, Scott FitzGerald

Consi Winner: John Gosselin

B-Main Winner: Randy Ryan

 

Super Stock Feature (20 laps)

Pos.-(Start)-Driver-Hometown

# – denotes rookie

1. (5) Andrew FitzGerald, West Rutland, Vt.

2. (6) Josh LeClaire, Plattsburgh, N.Y.

3. (3) Mark Norris, Benson, Vt.

4. (4) Paul Braymer, Granville, N.Y.

5. (12) # Chuck Bradford, Addison, Vt.

6. (2) Kevin Elliott, Rutland, Vt.

7. (1) Ronnie Alger, Orwell, Vt.

8. (13) Matt Monaghan, Colchester, Vt.

9. (10) # Andy Botala, Grand Isle, Vt.

10. (7) # Zach Wood, Georgia, Vt.

11. (8) # Griff Mahoney, Bristol, Vt.

12. (11) # Chris Brown, Shrewsbury, Vt.

13. (9) # Brett Wood, Georgia, Vt.

Lap Leaders: Ronnie Alger, pole; Mark Norris, 1; Andrew FitzGerald, 2-5; Norris, 6-7; FitzGerald, 8-20. (4 lead changes among 3 drivers)

Cautions (4): Laps 7, 8 [red], 9, 12.

Heat Winners: n/a

 

Summit Up Construction Mini Stock Feature (20 laps)

Pos.-(Start)-Driver-Hometown

# – denotes rookie

1. (9) Chris Sumner, Ripton, Vt.

2. (10) Chris Conroy, Newport, N.H.

3. (4) Tim Simonds, North Clarendon, Vt.

4. (14) Aaron Bunker, Newport, N.H.

5. (13) Craig Kirby, St. Albans, Vt.

6. (10) Willie Rice, Poultney, Vt.

7. (15) # Daryl Gebo, Orwell, Vt.

8. (8) Brian Blake, Cornwall, Vt.

9. (21) # Chase Alen, Fair Haven, Vt.

10. (3) Derrick Counter, Leicester, Vt.

11. (11) Lynn Denton, Milton, Vt.

12. (12) Jake Barrows, Middlebury, Vt.

13. (2) Adam Stewart, Benson, Vt.

14. (16) # Austin McKirryher, Proctor, Vt.

15. (1) T.J. Knight, Wells, Vt.

16. (22) Tom Severance, Fair Haven, Vt.

17. (5) Mary Gardner, Middle Granville, N.Y.

18. (6) Freddy Burch, Middle Granville, N.Y.

19. (17) # Adam Mahoney, Rutland, Vt.

20. (24) # Kaydan Rice, Poultney, Vt.

21. (18) # Scott Chandler, Pittsford, Vt.

22. (23) # Hunter Clark, Salisbury, Vt.

23. (19) # Jakobee Alger, Orwell, Vt.

Did Not Start (3): # Jake Mallory, Granville, N.Y.; Jarrod Colburn, Rutland, Vt.; # Kurt Simonds, North Clarendon, Vt.

Lap Leaders: T.J. Knight, 1; Derrick Counter, 2; Chris Sumner, 3-20. (2 lead changes among 3 drivers)

Cautions (1): Lap 2.

Heat Winners: n/a

 

Friend Construction 500cc Mini Sprint Feature (15 laps)

Pos.-(Start)-Driver-Hometown

# – denotes rookie

1. (4) Ray Hanson, Orwell, Vt.

2. (1) Austin Chaves, Chester, Vt.

3. (5) Kamden Duffy, Richmond, N.H.

4. (3) Kaidin White, Monkton, Vt.

5. (9) # Vern Woodard, Fair Haven, Vt.

6. (10) # Gage Provencher, Bridport, Vt.

7. (6) # Lynn Sumner, Fair Haven, Vt.

8. (7) # Tommy Kasuba, Castleton, Vt.

9. (11) # Kris Severance, Fair Haven, Vt.

10. (12) # Eric Paige, Orwell, Vt.

11. (2) John McPhee Jr., Rutland, Vt.

12. (8) # Kyle Bruno, Proctor, Vt.

Lap Leaders: Austin Chaves, 1-4, Ray Hanson, 5-15. (1 lead change among 2 drivers)

Cautions (1): Lap 11.

Heat Winners: Austin Chaves, Ray Hanson

 

Enduro Series Feature (50 laps)

Pos.-(Car No.)-Driver-Laps Completed

1. (623E) Eric Leno – 50

2. (510) Matt Wade – 50

3. (623B) Brent Wilbur – 50

4. (069) Jason Vezina – 50

5. (74) Ryan Benoit – 49

6. (88) Cagney Hamblett – 49

7. (2X) Zach Stone – 49

8. (710) Kelley Barrows – 48

9. (215) Kevin Wade – 48

10. (15) Ryan Patch – 48

11. (69) Reilly Case – 48

12. (911) Artie Forrest – 47

13. (44B) Kevin Ballentine – 47

14. (22K) Vinnie Kendall – 43

15. (143) Cody Dion – 43

16. (27) Jared Allen – 42

17. (120Z) Alex Mattey – 42

18. (999) Matt Peck – 36

19. (67) Dustin Tierney – 34

20. (22) Eddie Bruno – 32

21. (8R) Rich Rose – 31

22. (14) Michael Ayer – 30

23. (199) James Berlinghoff – 29

24. (68) Rocky Francis – 28

25. (623C) Colton Leno – 26

26. (15D) Dan Desforges – 23

27. (8B) Dillon Botala – 23

28. (56) Zoe Chaves – 21

29. (221) Justin Hamilton – 11

30. (1) Joe Sherwood – 11

31. (7F) George Fortin – 11

32. (91) Norman Morrill – 10

33. (22G) Greg Whitney – 10

34. (25) Kyle Botala – 10

35. (44) Eric Friend – 9

36. (01) Bryce Allen – 9

37. (017) Cody Greene – 8

38. (10) Griff Mahoney – 3

39. (7M) Chris Murray – 1

No Score: (713) Brian Barrett