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Matt Hirschman waited until the moment was right, pounced, and rocketed to another Monaco Modified Tri-Track Series win on Saturday night, April 30. Hirschman tamed the high-banks of Monadnock Speedway in Winchester, New Hampshire – scoring a $10,000 prize and once again living up to his “Big Money” name.
Hirschman passed Monadnock NHSTRA Modified regular Matthew Kimball and held off some of the top Modified contenders on multiple final restarts to capture the checkered flag. Sam Rameau, a two-time Tri-Track winner at Monadnock, crossed the line second, while Brian Robie was third.
Rameau – who was at the front of the field for nearly the entire first half of the race – decided to play a different strategy than most and stay out while nearly everyone else pitted. Laps later, from the lead, when another caution flew, Rameau decided it was time to head down for fresh Hoosier racing rubber. He would restart outside the top-15, and charge through the field to finish second. The Westminster, Massachusetts, native was back on the podium at his home track.
Hirschman played the strategy of pitting with everyone else, after riding at the rear in typical Hirschman fashion early, saving his equipment for when it mattered most. When the time was right, he worked his way into the top-five, and eventually challenged and passed Kimball for the lead.
“You can win many different ways here,” said Hirschman, who started 18th in the field. I’ve seen it done. This place has been a bit of an Achilles heal for me recently. … In recent years we haven’t found victory lane. We’ve been close, but not as good as we are in a lot of places. So it’s good to get a win here tonight.”
On a flurry of late restarts, Rameau charged to second.
“I gave it all I could,” Rameau said. “Coming from the back like that with just a little bit of time left, it’s a really hard task to overcome. [Matt Hirschman] is just about the best there is. So it’s like a win for this team, our first race of the year to come second to him.”
Robie used both the top – and bottom – to grab third.
“We were stuck back there in 10th or 12th or whatever,” Robie said. “I felt the car come to me. It felt pretty good there toward the end.”
Kimball settled for fourth, with Chase Dowling, who won the August of 2021 race at Monadnock, fifth.
“Good racing. [Matt Kimball] is a good racer,” Hirschman said. “He just, without pitting, I think it finally caught up to him. [Rameau] runs real good here. He’s won a couple in recent years. And then Brian Robie jumped up there at the end. I didn’t know where he came from.”
Ronnie Williams was sixth, followed by Todd Patnode, Chris Pasteryak, Kirk Alexander and Les Hinckley.
Hirschman’s $10,000 prize, followed by Rameau’s $6,000 check, was only part of a purse that was over $40,000 for the event. Hirschman’s win was his 15th career in 36 series starts – now 10 races above anyone else in history.
The race also included the debut of the Call 811 Before You Dig “Cone” rule, where drivers must select their restart lane when they approach the orange cone. The addition of the cone rule allowed competitors to gain positions if they were brave enough to try a different lane.
Earlier in the day, Rameau, Dowling and Richard Savary won qualifying heats in the Pepsi Challenge, each earning a $300 bonus.
The Monaco Modified Tri-Track Series will return to competition for the second race of the season at Thunder Road Speedbowl on Sunday, May 29.
For more information on the Monaco Modified Tri-Track Series, visit MonacoModifieds.com and follow the series on social media.
Monaco Modified Tri-Track Series
May 30, 2022