BARRE, Vt. – As it always does, a much clearer overall picture emerged in the second segment of the 49th annual People's United Bank Milk Bowl on Sunday afternoon.
Scott Payea charged from 21st starting position in the 75-lap middle segment to finish sixth and take a two-point lead over Nick Sweet with one final segment remaining at Thunder Road International Speedbowl. Sweet finished 10th in the second stanza, while Brian Hoar – the pole winner and winner of the first segment – finsihed 12th to stay within three points of the lead.
Mike "Beetle" Bailey won the second segment ahead of Craig Bushey and Chip Grenier.
But the segment clearly belonged to Payea, who was busy moving toward the front while the others in the battle for the overall lead were busy wrestling with one another.
Payea wasted no time moving forward under the green flag. Sweet, on the other hand, briefly got away from Pembroke and Hoar until a caution flag only a few laps in reeled him back. Pembroke followed the restart by quickly gaining some momentum until his car seemed to flatline and slow its progress.
Hoar lied in wait until a Lap 41 restart, when he started making progress toward those he's battling for the overall picture.
Payea was at his best after that restart, gaining four spots to sixth over the final 30 laps.