Forty years ago in 1969,
action in the northeast shifted into high gear. At Stafford on Friday night,
Fred DeSarro in his own No.11 took the opening night win. Eddie Flemke in
the Garutti-Arute No.14 was second. Gene Bergin, in the Garbarino Bros.V-4
was third with Bugsy Stevens in the Len Boehler No.3 and Ed Yerrington in
the Freddie's TV No.23 rounding out the top five. At the Albany-Saratoga
Speedway in Malta, N.Y., Jerry Cook took the win and was followed by
Evans and Lou Lazzaro. Saturday night at Norwood, Johnny Thompson in his
Ford powered No.122 took the victory over DeSarro, Stevens and Jack Malone.
At Fonda, Lou Lazzaro beat out Rene Charland for the win. Daring Dick Caso
was the Modified winner at the Waterford Speedbowl. On Sunday at Thompson,
the Bugman took the main event despite stiff competition from Flemke,
DeSarro, Bergin and Ed Yerrington. At the Utica-Rome Speedway it was again,
Cook and Evans finishing one-two over
Lazzaro and Dave Lape. Tioga Motorsports Park was called the Shangri-La
Speedway. Jim Shampine was the winner there.
Thirty five years ago in 1974,
rain-washed out a scheduled 100 lapper at Utica-Rome on Friday night. Racing
at Shangri-La on Saturday was also cancelled, as it was way to cold for
night racing. Charlie Jarzombek went two for two as he won at both Freeport
and Islip. At Stafford on Friday, Bugsy Stevens held off Don Flynn and Jerry
Cook for the win. Sunday was busy in New York State as Oswego and Fulton ran
afternoon and evening programs. At Oswego, Gary Reichart won the 75 lap Port
City event over Maynard Troyer, Richie Evans and Geoff Bodine. At Fulton it
was Bodine over Cook and Evans. Waterford ran an open show on Sunday with
Dynamite Ollie Silva taking the top spot over Bugsy Stevens, Bob Santos and
Thirty years ago in 1979, a
full plate of Modified racing was on the table. The weekend started on
Friday night at Stafford where Richie Evans took the win over Bugsy Stevens,
Ronnie Bouchard and Brian Ross. On Saturday night, Tom Dunn fired Freddie
Schulz and put Bentley Warren in his T-5. Warren turned the trick and took
the win at Westboro over Joe Howard and John Falconi. At Seekonk, Bugsy
Stevens beat out Ronnie Bouchard, Fred Astle and George Summers. At
Waterford, Rick Donnelly took the win over Dick Ceravolo, Roland LaPierre
Jr. and Billy Greco. At Plainville, Ron Wycoff held of Ronnie Rocco for the
win and at Islip, Tom McCann, Wayne Anderson, Greg Sacks and Fred Harbach
were the top four. Shangri-La action saw George Kent over Richie Evans and
Dave Nichols. On Sunday at Thompson, Joe Howard got a well-earned win over
SJ Evonsion and at Monadnock it was Dunk Rudolph over Reggie Ruggiero and
John Rosati. The mods also ran at Montreal in Canada where Evans beat out
Satch Worley, Jerry Cook and Ronnie Bouchard.
Twenty five years ago in 1984,
the family of the late Larry Mendolsohn sold the Islip Speedway, which meant
the track would close forever at the end of the 1984 season. The lawsuit
between M & H tires and Hoosier, Stafford and Seekonk was settled in appeals
court after many months of bitter fighting. M & H lost and the door was open
for tracks to implement track tire rules without fear of being sued.
Stafford rained out on Friday night. It cleared on Saturday. Richie Evans
won at Riverside over Stan Greger and Bob Polverari. George Moose Hewitt
took a 30 lapper at Waterford over Bob Gada and at Islip, Chris Young outran
Bill Park for the win. Down on the Jersey shore at Wall Stadium, Tony
Siscone added another victory. At Thompson on Sunday, Mike Mclaughlin in the
Len Boehler No.3 took the 30-lap win over Richie Evans and Ray Miller. In
Winston Cup action at Talladega, Cale Yarborough was the pole sitter and the
Twenty years ago in 1989, the
Modified tour was at Stafford for a 100 lapper on Sunday. Mike Stefanik took
the win over Mike Mclaughlin. Ted Christopher beat out Bob Potter for the SK
mod win. In other weekend action, Christopher beat out Moose Hewitt at
Waterford, John Blewett Jr. beat Bill Park at Riverhead and Reggie Ruggerio
ruled over Dan Avery at Riverside Park. It was also the seventh week in a
row that Seekonk rained out.
Fifteen years ago, in 1994,
rain washed out Stafford, Waterford and Riverhead. At Riverside, Steve Park
in the Joe Brady No.00 started 16th and went on to win the 50 lap modified
event over Stan Greger and Reggie Ruggerio. At Seekonk, Eddie StAngelo beat
out Vinnie Annarummo for the Pro Stock main event. The Winston Cup Teams
were off and the Busch cars were at Loudon for the Chevy Dealers 250. Derek
Cope, driving for Red Farmer, won the event after Hermie Sadler ran out of
gas in the closing laps.
Ten years ago, in 1999, Jeff
Malave beat out Willie Hardie to win the Friday night SK modified event at
Stafford. Waterford and Riverside rained out as the action shifted to Loudon
for the twin BGN-BGNN events. Elton Sawyer was the BGN winner and Brad
Leighton, the Busch North. Nascar’s Winston Cup had an off weekend, as it
was Mothers Day. In other news from the weekend, Steve Bird who led Bace
Motorsports to multiple Championships was released (fired). Steve Hmiel was
named as crew chief for Steve Park and The International Speedway
Corporation and Penske Motorsports announced that they were merging. ISCA
stock shot up and closed out the week at 43-1/8.
Five years ago in 2004, gas
prices soared near or past the $2.00 per gallon mark. Lloyd Agor won his
first SK-Modified win at Stafford on Friday night but it wasn’t pretty. Agor
started on the outside pole of the 40 lap event and proceeded to block or
ride up anyone who attempted to pass, even Ted Christopher who is known to
put the bumper to a competitor when they block his progress. Christopher did
more than his share of the bump and grind but in the end, finished the night
in sixth spot. George Bessette finished second with Chuck Hossfeld, third.
Kerry Malone and Shawn Tryon rounded out the top five. After a weeks absence
Eric Berndt returned to the Friday night wars with a heavy heart, still
suffering from the loss of his mom. Berndt managed to survive to finish
seventh. Maybe getting back in that racecar was good therapy. It seemed that
everybody blamed everybody but Bo Gunning for all the wrecks on Friday
night. Gunning and car owner Eddie Partridge felt almost like they had three
wins in a row by not being there. No bent cars, no tire bills and nobody was
mad. Gunning was tossed out of Stafford in 2003. It was not totally his
fault but that’s history now. Gunning was told he could return to Stafford
if he took anger management classes. Gunning chose not to and was backed by
his car owner. Mike Quintiliano made it three in a row in Late Model
competition at Stafford. On Friday night he and Joe Rzeszutek swapped spots
and traded paint right to the final second when Quintiliano won by a
whisker. Aaron Goff was the Dare Stock winner. At the Waterford Speedbowl on
Saturday night rain put a damper on the SK-Modified and Late Model features.
A partial program was completed before the rains came with Dwayne Conant
taking the win in the Sportsman division, Dave Silvia in the Mini Stocks and
Silas Hiscock in the Legends. John III and Jimmie Blewett finished one –two
at the Wall Township Speedway on Saturday night The Nextel Cup division had
a weekend off in celebration of Mother’s Day. The Busch Racing Series was at
the Gateway International Raceway in Madison, Ill. on Saturday night. Martin
Truex Jr. continued to make a name for himself as he led 123 of the 200-lap
distance. Tom Rogers was the winner at Riverhead. Bill Park finished second
with John Fortin, third.
Last year, 2008, gas prices
ranged from $3.75 to $4.00 per gallon. The Stafford Motor Speedway fell
victim to rain for the second week in a row. The New England DODGE DEALERS
LATE MODEL 100 was. The Arute family that owns and operates Stafford
announced that NASCAR New England, the hour long Television production that
covers the weekly racing would be back on NESN for ten episodes during the
2008 season. The tentative starting date would be in late June.
The Waterford Speedbowl enjoyed another good night of competition
with Keith Rocco making it two in a row in SK Modified competition. Rocco
took the lead from Jay Miller with 13 laps remaining in the 35 lap feature.
Miller faded shortly after as Jeff Pearl moved into the second spot. Pearl
tried repeatedly to overtake Rocco but was forced to back out of it when it
became obvious that Rocco would wreck anyone who attempted to pass. Rather
than wrecking Pearl made a smart decision to settle for second spot. Rob
Janovic finished third and was followed by Ron Yuhas Jr and Tyler Chadwick.
In Late Model action, it was Bruce Thomas Jr. recording his third
feature of the season. Thomas battled with Ron Yuhas Jr. during the last
half of the event before finally getting the advantage as the two approached
lapped traffic and Thomas was able to sneak-by on the inside. Following
Yuhas was Tim Jordan, Vin Esposito, and Ed Reed Jr. Other Feature winners
were Walt Hovey Jr. (Sportsman), Randy Churchill (Mini Stock), Jason Palmer
(Legends), and Randy Cabral (NEMA Midgets).
The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Series and the True Value Modified
Series were in the middle of their “Spring Break”. To date both series had
enjoyed good counts despite the high costs of traveling. The Whelen
Modifieds have had 41 Modifieds enter into competition while the TVMS has
had 39. With the two major series on break the All Star Speedway in Epping,
NH hosted a special 100 lap open competition event for Modifieds. Mike
Stefanik took the win over Andy Seuss and Ron Silk. The event drew 31 cars.
Wayne Anderson won Saturday nights NASCAR Modified feature at the
Riverhead Raceway just one week after a hard crash on opening night.
Anderson started on the pole and led every lap.
Kyle Busch won the battle of attrition Saturday night as one of
NASCAR's least popular drivers overcame a pit-road penalty and several
scrapes with the wall to win the Sprint Cup Dodge Challenger 500 at
Darlington Raceway in Darlington, S.C. Carl Edwards finished second, Jeff
Gordon was third and Dale Earnhardt Jr finished fourth.. Tony Stewart had
never won at Darlington before, but he was dominant Friday night in gliding
to victory in the Nationwide Diamond Hill Plymouth 200, the first race on
the track's repaved surface.
That’s it for this week from 11 Gardner Drive, Westerly, RI, 02891.
Ring my chimes at 401-596-5467. E Mail email@example.com.