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   The Chrome Horn - News



Just Surround Yourself and You Will Get Success
Denise DuPont

Keith Rocco started out his dream weekend last week with an SK Modified victory at Stafford Motor Speedway. Rocco passed veteran driver Ted Christopher on the last lap of the race to steal the victory away from Christopher. “The caution came out and it definitely played into our favor. I am sure that Ted did not want to see it but that is part of racing. You have to expect that no matter whether it is on my end of the stick or Ted’s end of the stick. Both roles could have been reversed. It is just definitely played in our favor. We had a real good car.”

The August “Friday the 13th” win brought Rocco one victory from perfection with a point total for the Nationals Championship of 808 out of 810. (810 points is a perfect score.)

Rocco then went forward and met his perfect point target with an SK win at his home track Waterford Speedbowl on Saturday, August 14th. “We had seven or ten weeks to win one more race. Just to do it tonight at the Waterford Speedbowl means a lot. This is where I started my racing career.”

This year NASCAR re-evaluated the Championship program and based on the economy and other factors. For weekly racers like Rocco it made the run for the Championship more feasible.” This year the lowered the amount of cars to twenty for a full field that helped guys like me. With the way the economy is the car count is dropping off so that change definitely helped us.”

Early on in his career Rocco was both mentored and influenced by two local race favorites. One was Ted Christopher who gave him the opportunity to fill in for him as he drove towards his own goal of a National Championship. “When Teddy won the National Championship I was actually working with him (both my brother and I). At that point I started my racing career I believe in 2003 down here (Waterford Speedbowl). And he (TC) gave me a shot at couple of times to do the start and park the car to help him out or to practice his car if he was not going to be around for another race track. That was great. He really gave me the first opportunity to drive a good SK even if it was only practice or a heat race. I respect Ted for that. Working with him definitely helped my learning career.”

The second person was the mentor that taught him to swing a wrench and hopefully someday fill his shoes, his father, Ronnie Rocco. “My father got me to where I am at. He taught me from the day that I was old enough to walk. He had me in the garage with wrenches. I was just brought up around it.”

Rocco has been lucky to have the racing opportunities and support that he has had to allow him to reach some pretty good milestones in his career. “There is nothing more that my father wants to see is for me to succeed in racing. My father did not have great equipment, but he did a lot with what he had. He ran the tri-track series in 1988-89. He ran all three tracks with one car. And he finished second in points. If he had what I have today in his times he would be where I am today (A National Champion). I want to thank NASCAR for giving us this All-American Series to race in.”

On Tuesday, August 17th , NASCAR representatives gave Keith Rocco the news, that he was officially the 2010 NASCAR Whelen All-American Series national champion.

Now that Rocco has secured the National Championship he is a racer so it does not mean he stops racing. So what is his plan for the rest of the race season?
“We are still here to win races. The bottom line is nothing has changed but the pressure is off.” And go forward, run and win races he did as “Kid Roc” won the 40 lap SK Modified feature at Stafford Motor Speedway on Friday, August 20th. It was his ninth SK Mod victory at Stafford and twenty-first SK Modified 2010 win.

Notes from Keith “Kid Roc” Rocco:

What is Keith Rocco’s winning race strategy?
“Just surround yourself with great people and you will get success.”

What was father, Ronnie Rocco’s thoughts on the Waterford SK Modified win and National Championship?
“It is what it is!”

Source: Denise DuPont / TheChromeHorn.com
Posted: August 21, 2010

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