ACT standouts DJ Shaw and Alexendre Tardif will join the 60th Vermont Milk Bowl presented by Northfield Savings Bank in pursuit of the $12,000 prize. (Photo by Buzz Fisher)
BARRE, Vt. — One week to go until the 60th edition of “North America’s toughest short-track stock car race,” Thunder Road’s famed Vermont Milk Bowl.
Early entry forms have been pouring into the office in preparation for the $103,000 spectacular that kicks off at the Lenny’s Shoe & Apparel Milk Bowl on Friday, September 30, with the All Stars Pro Series Invasion. The action will continue with the Booth Bros./Hood Milk Bowl qualifying day on Saturday, October 1, and will conclude with the Milk Bowl itself on Sunday, October 2.
Several of the top teams on the American-Canadian Tour have thrown their hats into the ring in pursuit of the $12,000 first prize. The Vermont Milk Bowl will feature at least four leading teams from the American-Canadian Tour looking to maintain their 100 percent participation status.
ACT points leader and Labor Day Classic champion DJ Shaw leads touring stars that include top rookie on tour Alexendre ‘Fireball’ Tardif and New Hampshire drivers Cody LeBlanc and Erick Sands. All four have upgraded their programs for the high benches of Barre after each event – expect them to be red hot and running by Milk Bowl weekend.
While he won’t be running for tour points, former 2019 ACT Champion and 2018 Milk Bowl Rapid Qualifier Jimmy Hebert will also be in attendance, as well as New Hampshire part-timers Jimmy Renfrew, Jr. and Shawn Swallow.
The Maplewood/Irving Oil Late Model regulars are also far from lacking in the talent department. Each seeks to join the granite monument and take their place in Thunder Road’s 63-year history. Leading the charge are former Milk Bowl champions Bobby Therrien and Jason Corliss.
Therrien looks to kiss the cow a second time, while Corliss looks to join the elite pair of four-time winners Robbie Crouch and Nick Sweet. St-Denis, Quebec, and recent Fall Foliage 200 winner Patrick Laperle join Corliss in his quest for an illusory fourth victory.
Also leading the locals is this year’s King of the Road, Christopher Pelkey. After hanging out with him a year ago, Pelkey won his illustrious first Thunder Road track championship and looks to cap his season with victory in the 60th running of this nationally recognized event.
Pelkey’s main rivals, Scott Dragon and Kyle Pembroke, have also put their name on the Milk Bowl hat along with fellow Thursday night regulars Stephen Donahue, Brandon Lanphear, Cooper Bouchard, Scott Coburn and Matt Smith.
Special surprise entries include entries from the Mitchell Brothers Racing team of Derek Ming and Jesse Switser, 2009 Milk Bowl winner John Donahue, and former Vermont Governor’s Cup and Labor Day champion Brooks Clark.
Former Lenny’s Shoe & Apparel Flying Tiger Track Champion Brendan Moodie also submitted his entry along with Flying Tiger standout Jaden Perry, former three-peat King of the Road Derrick O’Donnell, New Yorker Fred LaGoy and Blair Bessett of Barnet.
The increase from $50 to $100 per spin for the 60th Vermont Milk Bowl means double the cash on every spin. In a three-way split, each lap leader earns $50, second place gets $30, and third place gets $20 for all 150 laps.