AND INDY 500 VETERAN
SET FOR COFFEE CUP
Many of the leading race drivers in the Northeast will compete alongside
nationally-known competitors when the high-powered, three-quarter-size
Midget Cars return to the Dunkin’ Donuts Center in Providence, R.I., on
December 4 and 5.
They will race in two complete programs for the "Coffee Cup" on a
concrete oval on the arena floor. Cars will be reaching speeds of close to
70 mph, the spectators have thrilling views from seats overlooking the
NASCAR Sprint Cup star David Reutimann and Indy 500 driver Davey
Hamilton will race at Providence for the first time.
Reutimann will be making a special appearance sponsored by Dunkin
Donuts, on Friday, December 4 only. Reutimann, 39, will drive a No. 00 with
the car having the logos of the Rhode Island Community Food Bank. Fans are
encouraged to “Give Back This Holiday Season” by bringing a non-perishable
food item to the races that can be donated to that cause.
Hamilton, a nine-time Indianapolis 500 starter, will be driving a
car fielded by the versatile Lou Cicconi Jr. Overall, Hamilton started 50
Indy Car events and was twice a runnerup in series points. He has also been
a leading driver in the high-powered Supermodifieds, and in full-size
Midgets, at tracks around the country. Now, he will race a TQ for the first
time at Providence.
Many-time race and championship winning TQ-Midget standouts in
competition will include Cicconi Jr., Mike Tidaback and Joey Payne. All
three drivers have won major indoor races in Atlantic City, NJ in recent
They will be joined by leading Modified division drivers in the
They include last March’s Providence winners, Ted Christopher of
Plainville, Ct. and Mike Iles of Medford, N.J.; dirt track specialist Billy
Pauch of Frenchtown, N.J., and pavement ace Mike Stefanik of Coventry, R.I.
Pauch, a winner of over 650 features in his career, did not race in
Providence in March due to a schedule conflict. But, he drove to victory
indoors in January at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, N.J. Of interest,
Pauch’s son, Billy Jr., already a successful driver in Modified and
full-Midget competition, will race alongside his dad at Providence.
For Stefanik, Rhode Island is home to the nine time NASCAR
champion. A specialist in the Modified and Late Model-style cars, he made
his debut in a TQ at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center race last March.
Other invaders entered include dirt Modified standouts Stewart and
James Friesen from Ontario, Canada; and N.J.’s Anthony Sesely, the winner of
two major Northeast pavement Modified races this autumn. The 2009 ARDC
Midget champion, Frank Polimeda; and Massachusetts resident Bobby Santos
III, who recently won the prestigious Copper World USAC Midget feature at
Phoenix Int’l Raceway, are considered pre-race favorites.
A special guest at the event will be retired New England race
driving champion Dave Humphrey. Beginning his career in the stock cars at
nearby Seekonk Speedway, he went on to become a six-time champion in the
Northeast Midget Association (NEMA) and a 72 time feature winner with that
organization. Mr. Humphrey will give the command to “start engines” and his
looking forward to meeting the drivers of today and his legion of fans.
The TQs will be complimented by Champ Kart racing on the same oval.
The Champ Karts, 5 HP-powered cars that offer sizzling, close
competition in their own right, will be raced by drivers representing eight
states. Possibly coming the longest distance to race is Florida’s Josh
Early favorites to be in victory lane for the karts include Chris
Daley, Justin Bonsignore and John Hillman.
Daley is “going for the circuit sweep,” having not only won both
features for the Karts last March in Providence but also in Atlantic City
last January. Hillman will be looking to avenge his loss at Providence,
where he battled Daley for top honors only to crash while in lapped traffic.
Long Island’s Bonsignore is a fast-rising driver in pavement Modifieds, with
a successful background in the karts.
The format will be similar to the one used in March. The
Three-Quarter Midgets and Senior Champ Karts will headline the two-day
program. Qualifying and feature events for both classes are scheduled each
Tickets can be purchased at all Ticketmaster locations and the
Dunkin’ Donut Center box office.
Ticketmaster can be reached online at
or by calling 1-800-745-3000. Information on the event will be available at
aarn.com or by calling 609-888-3618.
Source: Jerry Reigle / Coffee Cup