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Jul 31, 2013

Greenwood Wins LRRS Dash For Cash At New Hampshire Motor Speedway

LRRS Series: Scott Greenwood (4). Photo by Erica Arvidson, courtesy of NHMS/LRRS.
Greenwood Wins First “Dash for Cash” in 2013

The Loudon Road Race Series ran its fourth round of monthly races on July 28 and 29 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. After a six-week break, racers were greeted with sunshine. On Saturday, the weather climbed into the upper 80s, while Sunday was breezy and cooler in the mid-70s.

At the drop of the green flag – in the weekend’s marquee Middleweight Grand Prix “Dash for Cash” – Christian Cronin snatched the hole shot and led the pack into Turn 1 with the field of 23 Expert Riders closely behind. As the leaders exited Turn 2, a crash near the back brought out a red flag and forced a restart.

Riders lined back up in their original grid positions and again Cronin, on his Eggshell Restaurants Yamaha R6, jumped out to the early lead with Shane Narbonne (DAS Performance Suzuki GSXR 600), Scott Greenwood (Argo Cycles Yamaha R6), Eric Wood (Penguin Racing Ducati 848EVO) and Tyler Sweeney (Sweeney Tuned Yamaha R6) following closely behind.

Narbonne made quick work of Cronin just past the apex of Turn 3 with an inside move, grabbing the lead into Turn 4. As the lead pack entered Turn 6, Greenwood moved to second position with an outside pass of Cronin while on the brakes and set off after the Narbonne. Wood displaced Cronin back to fourth at the end of Lap 1.

Greenwood overtook Narbonne into Turn 6 on Lap 2 with an inside pass to grab the lead, but again, the race was red-flagged for a rider down in Turn 1A. This set up a third restart and new grids were set to the running order of the last completed lap.

On the restart, Greenwood grabbed the lead from pole position. Cronin, Narbonne, Wood and Sweeney battled through Turns 1, 1A and 2 to sort out the running order. Wood worked himself into the second position with Narbonne, Cronin and Sweeney as the top-five.

The second-place riding Wood, with Narbonne hot on his heels, worked to cut into Greenwood’s advantage but neither could close any ground. Greenwood, turned the quickest race lap of the season at 1:11.918 and built an advantage of about 1.5 seconds through the first half of the race, before the leaders reached lap traffic.

With two to go, Greenwood’s lead was just over two seconds, and Wood had stretched his advantage over third place. On the final lap, the race broke wide open as Wood’s clutch began slipping and Greenwood was able to take the win by a large margin as Wood nursed his bike home to second position with Cronin earning the final podium position.

Narbonne, Sweeney, Cory Hildebrand, Robert Nigl, Riley Rodgers, Jason Carter and Alex Guilbeault rounded out the top-10. Justin Pallein took home top honors with a convincing victory in the Amateur division over Ryan Stockman and Walter French Jr.

In victory lane, Greenwood was all smiles after earning his first “Dash for Cash” win of the season.

“I felt really confident and was trying to remain focused after the two red flags,” he said. “The second was a bit of a heartbreaker, as I had charged into the lead and felt like I was in position to pull away.

“I got a good restart and was able to lead it from the start and I knew these guys would be ready to pounce on me if I made any mistakes. I kept my head down and worked to get through traffic cleanly. It’s always give and take with traffic and it all worked out great.

“My bike worked excellent and the Dunlops were awesome as usual. With this group of racers you really have to be on your game to earn a win against them, and it really feels good to get my first win in the Middleweight Grand Prix this year.”

Finishing second, Eric Wood was happy to retain the season’s points.

“I am just happy to finish,” he said. “At the beginning, I put my head down and really tried to get up to Scotty (Greenwood) to challenge him. He rode the best I have seen him ride in recent memory and I wasn’t able to chip away at his lead.

“He did very well getting through traffic and as he was inching away, I was gapping Shane (Narbonne) and Christian (Cronin). At the end, the clutch gave out after all those restarts and I limped it home to the finish line. Congrats to Scotty – he earned this one. And we will be back to battle again next event and try and get the win.”

LRRS will return to NHMS for a race weekend on Aug. 17-18. It will be round five of seven on the season, and USGPRU and ASRA will be a part of the races.