Late Drama Punctuates Limited Sportsman Division Season Opener At Thompson Speedway

By Shawn Courchesne ~ RaceDayCT

Chris Douton celebrates an unexpected Limited Sportsman division victory Saturday at Thompson Speedway (Photo: Thompson Speedway)

Chris Douton celebrates an unexpected Limited Sportsman division victory Saturday at Thompson Speedway (Photo: Thompson Speedway)

THOMPSON – With his right rear tire sounding like it was abot to fall off, Chris Douton was content to settle for a hard fought third place finish Saturday at Thompson Speedway.

Then the drama happened. And in the end it was Douton celebrating in victory lane.

Douton, of Waterford, was awarded victory in the 20-lap Limited Sportsman feature Saturday at Icebreaker 2015 at Thompson Speedway.

Ryan Waterman of Danielson crossed the finish line first but was immediately disqualified from the victory for contact with Corey Hutchings on the final lap.

Scott Sundeen of Douglas, Mass. was second and Larry Barnett of Moosup third.

“This is just a surprise,” Douton said. “I lost a right rear tire at the end there. It was vibrating and jingling and jangling and I was going to finish in third. But hey, I’ll take it any way I can get it.

“I was just lucky. I had a youngin’ up there that got over aggressive and it just opened the door for me.”

Hutchings, of Salem, who won the final four Limited Sportsman division features of the 2014 season at Thompson, started on the pole and led all but the final lap.

On lap 18 Waterman got to Hutchings’ bumper and the fight was on. On lap 19 Waterman made contact with Hutchings and Hutchings nearly spun in turn four but held on to the lead. On the final lap Waterman again made contact, and Hutchings wasn’t able to hold on.

Hutchings spun through turn four and Waterman went to the lead and took the checkered flag. The call to disqualify Waterman was made immediately as the race ended. Waterman was penalized to be the last car on the lead lap in the final rundown.

“I was kind of surprised because I only hit him a little bit, kind of the same thing I’ve done at Waterford,” Waterman said. “I think he just made it look good because he knew he wasn’t going to win the race.”

Hutchings saw the incident differently.

“I think it was a great call that they made,” Hutchings said. “The kid blatantly hit me going into turn three. I drove it in two car lengths deeper than I normally would have just so I could try not to let him get into me and he still got me. It is what is.

“I was trying to save it all the way through the corner. I could not get it from not spinning. I usually have good car control but he just hit me so hard and he had me so far up in the corner that I had the thing locked right and I buried the throttle and tried to straighten it out and next thing you know you see the field coming out you.”

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