NORTH WOODSTOCK, N.H. — Dillon Moltz was in it for the long haul at White Mountain Motorports Park on Saturday, as he took control late to win the American-Canadian Tour Midsummer Classic 250.
Moltz grabbed the lead for good from Jimmy Hebert on a lap-183 restart and steadily pulled away down the stretch to snag the $10,000 payday on day one of Midsummer Classic Weekend.
The multi-time ACT winner started back in 16th for the 250-lap showdown and steadily worked his way through the field as polesitter Ryan Kuhn set the early pace.
When the first caution flag on lap 61 after Joey Polewarczyk suffered a mechanical failure and left oil all around the race track, Moltz was up to the sixth spot, trailing Kuhn, Christopher Pelkey, D.J. Shaw, Scott Payea, and Hebert.
The top six then went back-and-forth amidst a series of mid-race cautions that in turn triggered a flurry of tire strategies. A five-car pile-up on lap 74 led into the event’s competition fuel stop, and when another yellow flew five laps later, Payea was the first of the leaders to change tires. Moltz had moved into the second spot by this time, and when the green flag came out, he swept around Shaw on the outside to get the lead for the first time.
The duo traded the top spot on three more cautions over the next 19 laps, with the outside line getting the advantage each time. On a lap-92 caution, Hebert, Pelkey, Jason Corliss, and several other top runners ducked into the pits to put on fresh rubber. Following the sixth yellow at lap-98 for debris on the track, Shaw got the lead and the field finally settled down for a long green-flag run.
After stalking Shaw for much of the run, Moltz seized an opportunity in lapped traffic on the 141st circuit, pinning Shaw behind a slower car and snatching the point once again.
When the caution flew for the seventh time on lap 158 for Jimmy Renfrew Jr.’s spin, nearly all of the lead-lap cars who had not yet gotten fresh tires chose to do so, including Kuhn, Shaw, Nick Sweet and Alby Ovitt, with still others making a second stop. Moltz, though, stayed out, deciding then and there to try and go the distance on the same four tires he started the race with.
The early returns on the move were not promising as both Bryan Kruczek and Jimmy Hebert sailed around Moltz on the restart. As Hebert went to work on Kruczek and eventually wrestled the lead away on lap 171, Moltz regained his footing, and he was pressuring Hebert when Renfrew and Sweet tangled to bring out the eighth and final caution on lap 183.
The outside groove was gold once again on the restart as Moltz grabbed the lead for the fourth different time of the night. This time, it was for good, as Moltz slowly but surely drove away from Hebert for a convincing win and a five-figure check to go with it. It was the fourth ACT win of Moltz’s career and his third in ACT competition at White Mountain Motorsports Park.
Hebert finished second and unofficially will take over the ACT point lead. Corliss held off a spirited charge from Payea to take third.
Kruczek, who had been involved in the lap-74 tangle, recovered for fifth.
Dillon Moltz, Jimmy Hebert, Jason Corliss, Scott Payea, Bryan Kruczek, Dylan Payea, Quinten Welch, Ryan Kuhn, Derek Gluchacki, D.J. Shaw, Alby Ovitt, Joel Hodgdon, Christopher Pelkey, Jesse Switser, Tom Carey III, Oren Remick, Matt Anderson, Stephen Donahue, Nick Sweet, Jimmy Renfrew Jr., Ben Rowe, Scott Coburn, Bryan Mason, Sammy Gooden, Marcel J. Gravel, Jeff Marshall, Jon Savage, Joey Polewarczyk.