Labor Day Motorsports Musings

Episode 19
August 31, 2014

Jon Dixon of Preque Isle on left works on his Street Stock 1985 Chevy Monte Carlo with crewmen.

Jon Dixon of Preque Isle on left works on his Street Stock 1985 Chevy Monte Carlo with crewmen.

More Street Stock Talk

I was unable to interview Jon Dixon of Presque Isle last weekend since he needed to leave immediately after the races when he found that his wife’s aunt had passed away that evening. Dixon, who races the Street Stock class at Caribou’s Spud Speedway, agrees with fellow racers within the class about the competitiveness.
“We’ve got a close group of cars,” said Dixon. “Guys that don’t want to wreck each other and cause a bunch of work for anybody else.The guys doing it in this class do not have a lot of money so the least amount that you can spend on your car the more fun you are going to have.”
“The group of guys here are all friends. Bob (Bobby Anderson one of the winningest drivers at Spud Speedway) has been here as long as I can remember. I watched him as a kid.Racing against him is the same way. He doesn’t want to wreck anybody and neither does anyone else. We want to race clean, race, go home, and do it again next week.”
Dixon was appreciative of the group of fellow racers who stepped up to prep his race car two weeks ago when he was unable to work on the car when he needed to support his wife who was helping take care of her aunt who had terminal cancer. He also gave credit to fellow racer Jeff Willette of Presque Isle when Willette allowed him to build the race car in his shop several years ago.
Dixon placed fourth in the feature in Saturday nights stock car races at Spud Speedway. The race was won by Mapleton’s JR Howlett who led every lap with Eric Argraves of Castle Hill in his mirror and Bobby Anderson of Limestone placing third.

Loring Timing Association Hosts Final Speed Trial of 2014 at Limestone

The Loring Timing Association (LTA) held their fifth annual Labor Day Speed Trials on the former Loring Air Force Base 2 1/2 mile runway. The event was rained out on Sunday with all runs taken on Saturday.
The fastest speed of the event was New Jersey’s Ed Petrozzi who ran 250 mph on his Suzuki motorcycle. This qualified Petrozzi to run 250 plus in future events at the Limestone track.
Carl Theriault defended his top speed title from the summer with his Mustang. His 209 mph run held throughout the day with only the motorcyclist exceeding his speed.

Caribou's Jesse Michaud arrives home with his 1970 VW Beetle after making a 100 mph pass at Loring Timing Association Labor Day weekend event.

Caribou’s Jesse Michaud arrives home with his 1970 VW Beetle after making a 100 mph pass at Loring Timing Association Labor Day weekend event.

Sometimes the best stories at motorsports events are not always about the fastest car or motorcycle. One such story is that of Caribou’s Jesse Michaud with his brightly painted 1970 VW Beetle. Michaud, who races motorcycles primarily, drove his Honda RC51 to a new Production Twin record of 168.9mph. Even with this accomplishment he was equally pleased that he made the “International 36 HP Challenge ’1′ Club” for those using the air-cooled VWs in drag racing or land speed racing and go over 100 miles per hour.
Michaud pulled the windshield wipers and mirror off the car after an early run yielded a 98.4 mph speed in the mile and one-half. It seemed to do the trick when a late day pass at 100.3 mph put him into the “1 Club”.
“It’s a daily driver car,” said Michaud. “It came from Florida to Southern Maine two years ago as an unfinished project. There it got a little more work done to it over the next couple years. I got it as an unfinished project in April 2014. Actually my girl friend (Stacy Robey) bought it but she doesn’t drive it. I finished it up.”
Another interesting story was Caribou’s Adrian Tauer with his turbocharged Toyota Yaris. Toyota introduced the Yaris line for its fuel efficiency more than it’s performance capability. Tauer has taken the tame mile-maker and transformed it into a true hot rod.
He had a body kit installed in Alabama and with the help of local high performance shop owner Jason Theriault of JRT Customs in Caribou was able to tune the turbo charged engine for runs at or near the 150 mph mark.
Tauer, who dedicated the weekend as a tribute to his Dad,, turned 145.5 mph in the mile and 154.49 in the mile and one-half. He felt the stock throttle body limited his boost to 15 psi. He also met the LTA’s 150 mph licensing requirement. To got faster he must meet stricter safety guidelines which he says will require some sponsorship help to accomplish.

Penske’s Will Power Crowned Indy Car Champion

Thirty three year-old Will Power become the first Australian to win the Verizon Wireless Indy Car points championship when his 9th place finish at Fontana Speedway in California allowed him to finish ahead of fellow Penske team-mate Helio Castroneves. Power was the runner-up in the series three times previous. In 2010 and in 2012 crashes in the final race of the year relegated him to the second place.
In an ABC News report,Power said, “That was one of the hardest races ever. Oh my god. I was crying over the line. I’m so mentally exhausted now. My hands are numb from holding on to the wheel so tight.”
Ganassi Racing’s Tony Kanaan won the race, his first of the 2014 season. From an earlier episode of Up North Motorsports you may recall that Wasburn, maine Steve Doody drives the Verizon Wireless Showcar to events throughout the United states. So congratulations to Steve also.

I also want to request that you lift my former racing fabricator and kart driver, Richard McNeal, up in prayer. McNeal is now living in Presque Isle where he is finishing up his last chemotherapy and radiation treatments this Tuesday September 2. McNeal has ben diagnosed with cancer in the tonsils and lymph nodes in his neck. He is optimistic that they got the cancer and is resting up a few weeks and actually hopes to return to work as a fabricator/mechanic at R.L. Todd in Caribou soon.

Let’s go racing!

Tom Hale
Soli Deo Gloria

Tom Hale

About Tom Hale

For the past 14 years, Tom has written freelance for the Bangor Daily sports covering motorsports in Maine.