This preview is in memoriam of former track owner Bill Kinney, who passed away on Sunday. Kinney had a long stock car racing history that went as far as the 1970s. He and co-track owner Gary Ford purchased a late model in the mid-90s, having a few different drivers until co-track owner Robbie MacLean raced for them for several years, both locally and in the Maritime Pro Stock Tour. Kinney, Ford, MacLean, and Chris Hucz purchased Oyster Bed Speedway in 2010. Kinney retired after the 2021 season, handing his keys to Kris Fournier and focusing on horse racing.
Kinney was beloved by all within the Oyster Bed Speedway family and was an integral piece to its presence in the Prince Edward Island sports industry. From many laughs and having people’s backs to improving the careers of numerous drivers and his commitment to keeping the track open during the COVID-19 pandemic, he will be dearly missed by everyone.
Bill Kinney was 69 years old. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Kinney family. Bill, thank you for your significant contributions to Oyster Bed Speedway and the entire Maritimes racing industry. May you continue to rest in peace. 1953-2023
We’d also like to congratulate 2021 Oyster Bed Speedway Bandolero champion Tanton Wooldridge on becoming the first-ever Canadian eMotorsports Network Oyster Bed Speedway 250 (on iRacing) champion in the #28 TLR Racing Late Model Stock. Wooldridge led 28 of 250 laps and also claimed fifth in time trials and second in Heat 2. Thank you to the CEMSN for hosting the event and thank you to every OBS representative who participated.
(CHARLOTTETOWN, PE) – September 20, 2023
The 2023 Oyster Bed Speedway racing season officially comes to an end this upcoming Saturday, September 23 with five house divisions on tap to give the fans one last hurrah in what has been a historic season.
From three championship finales to one of the most prestigious races every Oyster Bed Speedway season, what better way to conclude a thrilling and dramatic year? The 2023 season finale will crown new champions in the Reliable Motors Beginner & Outlaw Bandolero divisions and the Moore Well Drilling Outlaw division, plus potentially place a new name on a coveted trophy that has been chased for over a decade.
With a green flag at 6pm and driver introductions expected for the Piston Cup 100, fans will not want to miss one last Saturday night showdown from the local heroes and a few mainland drivers. Buckle up because this preview will be a long one.
Note: For stats, starts mean all heat, semi & feature races combined for one driver. Rounds mean every race day/weekend. Mini Stock drivers will have “races” instead of “starts” as they haven’t had to run multiple heat/semi races yet.
The Central Engine Services Street Stock Division already crowned a champion on Labour Day, but the past round on September 9 plus this upcoming Saturday have been all about money and headlines. This next round will be the biggest one yet, as the Piston Cup is back for another run. Beginning in 2009, the 100-lap feature has been a staple in Oyster Bed Speedway history. Doug MacEwen was the inaugural race winner, and throughout the 2010s and 2020s, we’ve seen different winners such as:
– Multi-time OBS Pro Stock race winner, current Super Late Model Series driver and fan-favorite Darren MacKinnon
– 2015 & 2022 OBS champion and 2023 points runner-up Colton Ford
– 2019 OBS champion Alex Sheehan
– 2022 Piston Cup champion Mike Duskey
– 3x Petty Int. Raceway champion Michael Cormier
– Many other big names
There are two notable drivers without a Piston Cup win who have all of the confidence and momentum in the world heading into the race of attrition. Tyler Gauthier (#11) earned his second-career Street Stock championship on Labour Day and heads into the Piston Cup with eight overall wins this year. Brandon Albert (#37) has won the past two features (including the $500 50-lap feature on Sept. 9) and has three feature wins this year. Both drivers are proven to have spectacular cars on long runs, but will they be able to survive an additional 50 laps?
Veteran Jeff MacInnis (#29) has come ever so close to a Piston Cup victory multiple times, with two runner-up finishes in the race’s history. The six-time award winner has finished third in points two years in a row and has two overall wins this year but none being a feature. Could his third top-two Piston Cup finish be a “third time’s the charm?”
21-time award winner Randy Millar (#77) has all of the trophies in the world at OBS, including 1997 Hobby Stock and 2008 Street Stock championships, but not yet a Piston Cup and this will be his first attempt at it. Plus, he recently won a lawn mower feature at Grassroots Raceway… will that give him momentum? Three-time division champion and multi-time Street Stock Super Series winner Nick Chiasson (#37) will look to add his name to the coveted trophy. Other veterans who will look to upset everyone with an underdog performance include Brian Arsenault (#03), Andrew Thompson (#4), Randy Snow (#26), Tayler Albert (#38), and Matthew Ford (#86). Rookie Tyler Doucette (#24) has been solid in his first four rounds as a Street Stock driver, which includes a semi win.
Lots of big names, money, and history on the line this Saturday. Whoever survives and crosses the line first after 100 laps will be lifting the prestigious Piston Cup and earning their name on the desired trophy. Will a former winner triumph again or does someone new etch their name onto the trophy and into the history books?
Inaugural Piston Cup champion Doug MacEwen will be the honorary starter in getting the engines fired and waving the green flag.
2023 Piston Cup 100 in honor of David Lambe Expected Entries
01. #03 Brian Arsenault
02. #4 Andrew Thompson
03. #11 Tyler Gauthier
04. #24 Tyler Doucette
05. #26 Randy Snow
06. #27 Nick Chiasson
07. #29 Jeff MacInnis
08. #35 Colton Ford
09. #37 Brandon Albert
10. #38 Tayler Albert
11. #77 Randy Millar
Entry list subject to change without notice. Drivers may show up without prior word.
In the Reliable Motors Beginner Bandolero Division, there is a five-point cushion between two drivers. Rookie Mason Gillis (#9) leads the way with 10 overall wins (two features), while sophomore and 2022 TCM September Shootout winner Andrew O’Connor (#63) is five points behind with seven overall wins (two features). The two have exchanged similar performances every round, with one or the other (sometimes both) experiencing misfortune every time. Both drivers won one race each on Sept. 9.
Heading into that round, there was a five-point cushion between three drivers, and Hudson Linzel-Waddell (#57) had loads of momentum from winning the TCM September Shootout Beginner Bandolero feature. However, a crash in the Sept. 9 feature was one he had no time to avoid, ending his night and sending him to -19 behind Gillis. He’s not entirely out of the picture yet, but the driver sponsored by Fair Isle Ford will need to do a lot of work and pray for miracles.
Behind those three drivers in points are some rising female stars of Oyster Bed Speedway. Rhyan Burke (#01), daughter of two-time Pro Stock champion Troy, earned her second-career win on Sept. 9 in heat #2 and had a very fast car with multiple laps led all night, but an incident in the feature ended any hope of a great ending. Payton Gallant (#42) claimed her first career win in the feature by ever so slightly over Gillis in a yellow-and-checkered finish. She will be hunting down Burke for the fourth spot in points.
Juliana O’Connor (#10) and Irelyn Rose (#47) will challenge for the sixth spot, while Ashtyn Gariepy (#11) hopes to find better luck after several rough rounds. Oliver Rayner (#23) has been stellar since making his 2023 debut on Canada Day.
In the Reliable Motors Outlaw Bandolero Division, Landon Pierce (#19) looks steady with a 30-point lead and 10 overall wins this year, including Twin #1 in the TCM September Shootout. He also has multiple wins across the rest of the region at Speedway 660, Petty Int. Raceway, and Scotia Speedworld. He leads the points both here and at Bud’s Speedway; in other words, Pierce could walk away with four track championships by the end of the racing season, but two of them (Petty & Scotia) require a close battle with recent TCM September Shootout overall winner Daniel Vandenburg (#97).
Behind Pierce is Cole Doyle (#12), whom he fought spirited battles with on Sept. 9, with Cole winning the semi. Cole also has a triple victory to his name from August 19 and a fourth overall finish in the TCM September Shootout.
Simon Doyle (#91) is 69 points behind Pierce and will likely settle for the third position, but he’s not ready to conclude the year without at least one more win, his last one coming on July 29 in heat #1. Hunter MacKinnon (#07) moved up to fourth as Wyatt Peters (#33) was absent on Sept. 9 (blown engine + didn’t have a new one ready in time). Peters will look to end the season on a high note with multiple incidents overshadowing fair finishes.
2022 Mike Stevens Memorial Beginner Bandolero winner Ethan Hicken (#5) did not participate in the Sept. 9 races and, if he runs, will be hoping for better luck after a rough TCM September Shootout, where he crashed multiple times. 2022 Petty Int. Raceway Beginner Bandolero champion Hudson Ruff (#83) will be in similar territory (if he runs) as he’s struggled to have a decent transition from Beginner to Outlaw. If Nova Scotia drivers Vandenburg and Samantha MacDonald (#14) decide to return after finishing as the top two drivers in the September Shootout, they will no doubt contend for wins.
In the Moore Well Drilling Outlaw Division, a champion will be crowned on Saturday, as 2018 Mini Stock champion Ricky Millar (#17) looks to finally earn his second career track championship, his first in the Outlaw division. He was ever so close last year until a crash late in the season took him out of contention. After four years of misfortune out of his control, Millar comes into race day with an 81-point gap, which should be more than enough to capture a long-awaited title.
A battle brews for the runner-up position as 2018 points runner-up Jordan LeClair (#47) leads 2022 Petty Int. Raceway Mini Stock champion Ryan McKnight (#46m) by six points. McKnight will be making his final-ever run at Oyster Bed Speedway this Saturday, hoping to end the OBS portion of his career on a high note by finishing runner-up in points.
It should be noted that Millar, LeClair, and McKnight were absent on Sept. 9 due to a schedule conflict, so if we go back to Labour Day, all three visited victory lane but none of them won the feature, which instead went to Kendall Palmer (#45). Palmer also finished third in the Sept. 9 feature, which was won by former Modified and Pro Stock champion Matt Palmer (#5).
2022 points runner-up Gerald Gallant (#99G) hopes to continue his recent momentum after earning the fourth-most total points out of any driver on Labour Day and finishing fifth in the Sept. 9 feature. Jessie LeClair (#46) wrecked in the Labour Day feature and wasn’t able to race anywhere on Sept. 9, so he hopes to have a fast, repaired car this Saturday. Layton Delaney (#7) is coming off heat and semi wins plus a fourth-place feature finish. Harley Cornish (#13) has dealt with awful car luck in recent rounds. Bradley Richard (#49) had 70+ total point rounds between August 19 and Sept. 4. Jamie Cummings (#81) earned the runner-up spot in the Sept. 9 feature. Jamie Ronaghan (#59) has shown speed ever since his 2023 debut on August 19 but the finishes just haven’t been in his favor.
In the Chris’s Bobcat Services Mini Stock Division, a champion was already crowned on Sept. 9, but they’ll remain on the race card for this upcoming Saturday with a 30-lap money feature. Jeff Bridges (#95) will look to shine once more after earning his second Mini Stock championship in three years in his iconic Lightning McQueen car. Brandon Forsyth (#3) almost claimed a triple victory on Sept. 9, but a post-race tech discovery that led to him losing the feature and the championship will certainly haunt him.
Cash Bridges (#69) will be chasing for one more win (last one coming on August 19) and Randy MacTavish (#76) will look to add a third feature win in 2023 to his name. Ricky Bedell (#2) couldn’t replicate his Labour Day triple win speed on Sept. 9, but it’s not too late to try and add a few more wins to wrap up a decent campaign. Bradley Darrach (#44) will return to the track for his second round in a row hoping to gain more speed out of his new neon car purchased from Emma Farrell.
The A&S Scrap Metals Bombers are on the race card for this upcoming Saturday and will very likely join the Mini Stocks in yet another showcase to give momentum to a 2024 division. The 30-lap feature still has several laps available at $50 each, so whether you’re a person or a business, give a helping hand to our Mini Stock superstars by sending Jeff Bridges a message on Facebook.
Weather date: Sunday, September 24 at 2pm
Race day format:
Prices: Adults $20, Youth 8-15 $10, 7 and under FREE, pit admission $25.
For pit area access, you must fill out the online e-waiver form and have it ready to show at pit entry. Link: https://os.speedwaiver.com/dtopx
Race days remaining per division (as of September 9)
Beginner Bandolero: 1 (Sept. 23)
Outlaw Bandolero: 1 (Sept. 23)
Mini Stock: 1 (Sept. 23)
Note: Sept. 23rd is for money, no points.
Outlaw: 1 (Sept. 23)
Street Stock: 1 (Sept. 23)
Note: Points are done for this division. The 23rd is the Piston Cup 100.
Bombers: 1 (Sept. 23)
Pro Stocks: 0
Hot Rods: 0
Beginner Bandolero: Mason Gillis (#9)
Outlaw Bandolero: Landon Pierce (#19)
Mini Stock is done for points. Jeff Bridges (#95) is your 2023 Chris’s Bobcat Services Mini Stock Division champion.
Outlaw: Ricky Millar (#17)
Street Stock is done for points. Tyler Gauthier (#11) is your 2023 Central Engine Services Street Stock Division champion.
Stay up-to-date on our social media platforms and the website as we continue to reveal news and information, and continue the HYPE during a THRILLING racing season!
Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, and TikTok. You can also check out our merchandise website at obsmerch.ca. Shop Samantha Busch merch is available there and will be at the race track every race weekend.
About Oyster Bed Speedway:
Oyster Bed Speedway is Prince Edward Island’s premier auto racing facility and features fun and excitement with weekly stock car racing special events throughout the season. The 1/3 mile paved oval is located in Oyster Bed Bridge at the intersection of routes 6 and 7, halfway between Cavendish and Charlottetown on beautiful Prince Edward Island.