August 3, 2012
years ago in 1952, Fred Luchesi was the Wednesday night Sportsman
winner at the New London-Waterford Speedbowl. Stu Eidell was the Claiming
Car winner. Don Collins was the Saturday night Sportsman winner at the
Speedbowl with Bud Matter victorious in the Claimers.
Fifty five years ago in 1957,
Red Bolduc went two for two as he won Sportsman features at the New
London-Waterford Speedbowl on Wednesday and Saturday nights. Ted Dean
followed suit as he won non-Ford features on both nights at the shoreline
Fifty years ago in 1962, Bill
Slater was the winner on dirt at the Stafford Springs Speedway on Friday
night. Charlie Webster was the Modified winner at Waterford on Saturday. Ed
Moody was the winner in the Bombers.
Forty five years ago in 1967,
the month of August began with a Wednesday night visit by the All-Star
League at the Fonda Speedway. Rene Charland took on the best in the business
and in the end prevailed in the 100-lap event at the New York oval. Pete
Corey finished second with Maynard Forrette, Jack Farquar and Frankie
Schenieder rounding out the top five. At Stafford, on Friday night, Gene
Bergin had the M-6 in top form as he took a hotly contested win in the
nights Modified feature. Nathan “Smokey” Boutwell in the Garuti-Arute No.14
finished second. Rounding out the top five were Leo Cleary, Sal Dee and Wild
Bill Slater. Albany Saratoga ran a 150 lapper with Ernie Gahan taking the
win over Rene Charland, Bill Wimble, Jerry Cook and Ed Patnoad. Rene
Charland continued to be unbeatable at Fonda as he made it three in a row on
Saturday night. Bill Wimble finished second with Ken Canistrary, third.
Daring Dick Caso took the top spot in Modified competition at Waterford.
Utica-Rome ran a 100 lapper on Sunday night. Steady Eddie Flemke, a master
of the short tracks, took the win over Fred Harbach, Lou Lazzaro, Don
MacTavish and Bill Wimble.
Forty years ago in 1972, Ralph
“Hop” Harrington, driving the Dick Armstrong No.1, won the Friday night 50
lapper at Seekonk. George Summers finished second with Ernie Gahan, Fred
DeSarro and Ronnie Bouchard rounding out the top five. At the
Albany-Saratoga Speedway, also on Friday night, Eddie Flemke took the win
over Denis Giroux, Bugsy Stevens, Bobby Santos and Bernie Miller. Stafford
ran a 100 lapper on Saturday night with Leo Cleary, in the Mystic Missile,
taking the win over Bugsy Stevens, Ronnie Bouchard, Fred DeSarro and Ernie
Gahan. Dave Lape won on the dirt at Fonda over top guns Kenny Shoemaker,
Jerry Cook and Lou Lazzaro. Glynn Shafer scored his third win at Waterford.
At Islip, it was Charlie Jarzombek and at Utica-Rome, Lou Lazzaro beat out
Richie Evans, Sonny Seamon and Jerry Cook. Lazzaro used the same car at
Utica-Rome, which was paved, that he used at Fonda.
Thirty five years ago in 1977,
Westboro ran a 50-lap open competition event on Wednesday night. Ronnie
Bouchard took the win over Bugsy Stevens, John Rosati and Mike Weeden.
Stafford ran a 100 lapper on Friday night. Bugsy Stevens scored a popular
win as he beat out Geoff Bodine, Ray Miller and Ronnie Bouchard. Friday
night at Riverhead saw Charlie Jarzombek win out over Wayne Anderson and Tom
McCann. At Seekonk on Saturday, Bugsy Stevens made it two for two on the
weekend as he won a 100 lapper over Ed Flemke, George Murray and George
Summers. Geoff Bodine beat out Bob Polverari at Riverside and at Westboro,
it was Pete Scwartz over Frank Kulhman. Rounding out the weekend was Sunday
night at Thompson where Fred DeSarro scored another victory, Ray Miller
finished second with Keith Williams and Dick Caso rounding out the top four.
In other weekend action, Maynard Troyer went two for two as he won at
Spencer and at Lancaster.
Thirty years ago in 1982, Corky
Cookman scored his biggest win as he took the victory in the Manchester Oil
Heat 100 at Stafford. Charlie Jarzombek finished second with Ray Miller,
third. Pre race favorite Greg Sacks was a dnf. with a flat tire. Monadnock
ran an 82-lap event that saw Marty Radwick hold off Ronnie Bouchard and
Dennis Albro for the win. In other Friday night action, Jerry Cook beat out
Doug Hewitt at Spencer, Tony Siscone took a hotly contested win over Richie
Evans at New Egypt and at Riverhead, Bill Park won the Thompson 300
qualifier. Waterford ran an 82 lapper on Saturday night. Randy LaJoie beat
out veterans Jerry Pearl and Moose Hewitt for top honors. At Riverside, Bob
Polverari took the win and at Seekonk, Eddie StAngelo won out over Ronnie
Bouchard and Billy Clarke. George Brunnhoelzl won a Thompson 300 qualifier
at Islip and Billy Griffin won out over Richie Evans and Doug Hewitt at
Shangri-la. Bob Polverari backed up his Saturday night win at Riverside with
a Sunday night win at Thompson. Corky Cookman finished second with Kenny
Twenty five years ago in 1987,
Jim Spencer mastered the Star Speedway as he won a 150 lap Featherlite
Modified Tour Series event on Wednesday night. Jeff Fuller finished second
with Mike McLaughlin, third. In SK-Modified action at Stafford on Friday
night, Ronnie Rocco took the win over John Jensen and Richie Gallup. At
Waterford on Saturday, Bob Potter scored his 75th career win at the
shoreline oval. Harry Rice finished second with Dickie Doo Ceravolo, third.
Reggie Ruggerio took a 100-lap win at Riverside over Mike Stefanik and Bob
Polverari and at Shangri-La, Jim Spencer went two for two as he won the
scheduled modified and Busch North Series events. Oswego ran a modified
special on Sunday, which was won by Doug Hevron. Jan Leaty finished second
with Brian Ross, Jamie Tomaino and George Brunnhoelzl rounding out the top
five. Sunday night action at Thompson rained out.
Twenty years ago in 1992, it
rained out for the sixth time at Stafford. Double features were on tap at
Waterford on Saturday night. Sharing the winners circle were Bob Potter and
Moose Hewitt. Phil Rondeau recorded his seventh win of the season in Late
Model action at the shoreline oval. Tommy Bolles unseated Jerry Marquis at
Riverside as Dan Watts beat out Mike Ewanitsko at Riverhead. Jerry Cranmer
got his sixth of the season at Wall Stadium and at Tioga, Ron Shepherd beat
out Lee Sherwood for the win. Mike Mclaughlin was the Busch North Series
winner at Holland and at Indianapolis Raceway Park; Joe Nemachek got his
first NASCAR Busch Grandnational win.
Fifteen years ago in 1997, the
NASCAR Featherlite Modified Tour Series was at Thompson on Thursday night
for a 150-lap event. Ricky Fuller, in the Art Barry 21, took the lead from
Mike Ewanitsko on lap 89 and never looked back Mike Stefanik finished second
with Reggie Ruggerio, Tom Cravenho and Tim Connolly rounding out the top
five. Ewanitsko faded to 14th, one lap down. Friday night at Stafford saw
Jim Broderick score his sixth win of the season in the SK-Modified division.
Using Mopar power, Broderick took the lead on lap 35 of the 50-lap contest.
Jeff Malave finished second with Ken Barry, third. Tucker Reynolds Jr. took
the lead from Todd Ceravolo with two laps to go at Waterford on Saturday
night. Ceravolo finished second with Jeff Pearl, third. Ted Christopher took
the win at Riverside over Ted Riggot and at Riverhead, John Fortin won out
over George Brunnhoelzl. Randy Lajoie won the Grandnational event at the
Indianapolis Raceway Park and at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Ricky Rudd
made a mileage run and walked off with the win and the $571,000 first prize.
Bill Slater celebrated his birthday on August 4 and NASCAR Scorer Morris
Metcalf celebrated his birthday on August 6.
Ten years ago in 2002 The
NASCAR Featherlite Modified Tour was at the Riverhead Raceway on Long Island
on Saturday night. A temperature in the mid 90’s made the 200 lap contest a
test of man and machine. It was a long hot summer day and night for just
about everyone on hand, including the close to 6000 spectators. The speedway
opened around 10:30 am for inspection and pit parking. Forty-five Modifieds
were on hand. Eddie Flemke JR has had limited success at the Long Island
oval up until now but last Saturday night was his night as he set fast time,
11.790 seconds, on the quarter mile. That was only the beginning as the
second-generation driver pulled the pole and led all 200 laps. The Hills
Enterprises- Ron Bouchard Auto Stores No.79 handled like it was on a wire.
Early race pressure from Eddie Brunnhoelzl then late race pressure from John
Fortin didn’t rattle Flemke who hugged the white line over the entire
distance. Fortin finished second with Brunnhoelzl, third. Ted Christopher
got in the event as a provisional and after starting 26th, drove a good
heads up race to finish fourth. Rounding out the top five was Chuck
Hossfeld, in the Mystic Missile. Nine cautions for 53 laps took their toll.
Local runner David Roys went out after ten laps after being involved in an
accident Tom Cravenho went the same route on lap 20. Riverhead Bad Boy, JR
Bertuccio got a round of applause when he dropped out with a flat tire on
lap 76 and Frank Vigliorolo dropped out on lap 100 with overheating
problems. Many of the top tour runners were involved in minor skirmishes and
thru no fault of their own ended up with poor finishes. David Berghman got
caught in the pits as his crew made repairs and only completed 117 laps.
Mike Stefanik had his ignition go south on lap139 and ended the night in
23rd spot. Stefanik was not a factor before the malfunction. Former modified
Tour champion Wayne Anderson finished 22nd after his engine overheated.
Anderson, then in his late 50’s, raced only at Riverhead. John Blewett III
was hoping for a good night and had a solid top ten going when he got
clipped and broke a steering arm. Blewett also got caught in the pits and
was only able to complete158 laps for a 21st place finish. Todd Szegedy
continues to dazzle the troops as he drove to a consistent seventh in the
final rundown. Jerry Marquis had been leading the standings also had his
problems with bent suspension parts and finished 20th, 30 laps down. Because
of Marquis’ misfortune, Szegedy now led the point standings. While the night
was good for some, it was a night of frustration for others, as 17 Modifieds
didn’t qualify. Among those who didn’t make it were Carl and Charlie
Pasteryak, Fred Vordermeier, Jake Marosz, Wade Cole, Renee Dupuis and Dave
Etheridge, Mike Christopher, Jim Kuhn and Tony Ferrante Jr. It got real
nasty at Stafford on Friday night as a severe thunder and lightning storm
forced the Arute family to pull the plug on the evening’s racing. Waterford
ran a 100 lapper for the SK-Modifieds on Saturday night which saw Ron Yuhas
Jr take the lead with two laps to go and go on to win the event. Eric Berndt
led most of the event but got snookered on the final restart when he held
back and Yuhas went. Both drivers were trying to out-fox each other and
Yuhas got the last laugh.
Five years ago in 2007, the
2007 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour competitors ended their summer break when
they made their annual visit to the Riverhead Raceway on Long Island. Blue
skies, 90 degree temps and high humidity greeted the 34 cars that showed for
the 28 starting spots. The top seven qualified based on their time trial.
Ted Christopher took the Busch Pole as he toured the quarter mile oval in
11.815 seconds. Second fastest was local veteran Bill Park. Howie Brode was
third fastest. Other time trial qualifiers were Jerry Marquis, Tony Ferrante,
Donny Lia and Mike Stefanik. Twenty five lap heat races were won by Jimmy
Blewett and James Civale. Among the tour regulars who didn’t qualify were
Woody Pitkat and Jake Marosz. Bob Grigas, who was qualified, was sent
packing after he drove his car to his hauler before getting permission from
tour officials. Among the missing was Zach Sylvester who reportedly had
ceased his relationship with Curt Chase and the No.77.
Mike Stefanik won the re-draw as he drew the pole starting spot.
Ferrante drew the outside pole. Just as the Riverhead 140 was about to get
the green some of the track lights in turn one went out.
After a one hour delay the Riverhead event got under way. Don Lia
and Bob Garbarino continued their golden year as they put another victory in
their corner, their fifth in eight events. Lia inherited the lead when Mike
Stefanik and Ted Christopher were involved in a wreck in the closing laps
and led the final six laps. It was a slam-bang affair as seven caution
periods slowed the event for 66 laps. Bill Park ended up in second spot in
the green-white-checkered finish. Ronnie Silk finished third, followed by
Justin Bonsignore and James Civali. Danny Sammons, Matt Hirschman, Howie
Brode, Jamie Tomaino and Ryan Preece rounded out the top 10. Stefanik ended
up 11th, Christopher was 15th. Stefanik led the first 116 laps after
starting on the pole. Christopher used lapped traffic to get by him on lap
115, and Stefanik took the lead back again on lap 137 before the two clashed
two laps later.
The True Value Modified Series traveled to the Beech Ridge Speedway
in Maine. Kirk Alexander won with Mike Holdridge second and Ed Dachenhausen
third. There were five lead changes. According to reports 30 cars were on
hand and a big crowd witnessed the event. Jack Bateman was leading at the 75
lap mark when he ran over debris on the track and suffered a flat tire.
In regular Thursday Night Thunder action at the Thompson Speedway
the temperatures were in the 90’s as Bert Marvin kept his cool as he took
the win in the 30-lap Sunoco Modified feature. Marvin, who has the
reputation of being a hot head at times, was coming off a one race
suspension for un-sportsmanlike conduct.
The hot and steamy weather was equaled only by the action on the
track at Thompson International Speedway on Thursday night. Bert Marvin of
Waterford made a strong statement returning to competition in style by
dominating the Sunoco Modified main event. The veteran grabbed the lead
early in the race and went on to dominate the 30-lap feature. On the opening
lap, Kerry Malone dove to the inside of a side-by-side battle between pole
sitter Dave Salzarulo and Josh Steeves to make it three-wide for the lead.
Malone could not keep up his momentum and fell back to third. Marvin
meanwhile appeared to be on rails, easily driving to the lead on lap three.
Woody Pitkat had already worked his way into the second spot followed by
Malone. John Blewett had his hands full holding off Keith Rocco for fourth.
Jimmy Blewett, who got out of shape on the front stretch, had gathered it in
and was running alone in sixth ahead of Tommy Cravenho. Marvin was enjoying
a sizeable lead as Pitkat began to feel the pressure from Malone. Rocco got
alongside John Blewett and was able to take away the fourth spot as the
flagman showed the crossed flags. On the same lap, Jimmy Blewett retired to
pit road. Rocco then made it a three car battle for the second spot. Marvin
entered lapped traffic as Pitkat, Malone and Rocco ran nose-to-tail. John
Blewett was able to reel in the group as well. Marvin easily maneuvered
through lapped traffic, enjoying his half-straightaway lead. Malone made his
bid for the second spot on lap 25. He got inside of Pitkat but could not
muster up the pass. The bid opened the door for Rocco, who then got
alongside Malone. The running order remained unchanged as the first caution
of the event flew on lap 25 when Shelly Perry dumped fluid on the front
stretch. Back under green, Marvin easily worked his way out to a solid lead
over Pitkat. Malone resumed his defense of third position from Rocco. John
watched from the fourth spot. While Marvin was running away with the lead,
Rocco made a last ditch effort on Malone for third. He got out of shape
trying to drive around Malone on the final lap. Rocco slid out of the groove
losing positions to both John Blewett and Tommy Cravenho. In the end Marvin
sat in victory lane. Pitkat helped pad his standing in the Whelen
All-American National Standing with his runner-up spot. Malone, who sits
third in the national standings finished third. John Blewett, and Tommy
Cravenho completed the top five.
Steve Michalski of Dayville won post-race tech to earn his first
victory of the season in the Mini Stock 25-lapper. Fred Astle of N.
Westport, MA, scored his long-awaited first win of the 2007 season. Mark
Jenison of Danielson continues his impressive 2007 season with his fourth
Late Model victory. Kurt Vigeant of Oxford was tops in the TIS Modified
division while Ernie LaRose of Plainfield checkered the Limited Sportsman
In NASCAR Whelen All-American Series action at the Stafford Motor
Speedway Woody Pitkat was cool as a cucumber as he made it three in a row in
SK Modified competition. Ryan Posocco made it two in a row in Late Model
competition. Brit Andersen took down the SK Light feature win for his third
win of the 2007 season, Sean Foster won the Limited Late Model feature for
his third victory of 2007, and Dan Flannery scored his first career victory
in the 15-lap DARE feature event.
The 40-lap SK Modified feature saw Woody Pitkat continue his white
hot summer streak with his third consecutive SK Modified feature victory.
Todd Owen took the early race lead and led the first three laps. Jeff Malave
moved past Owen on lap-4 to take the lead, but he was overtaken on lap-6 by
Zach Sylvester for the race lead. Sylvester held the lead until lap-26 when
Pitkat moved out front. A caution with 28 laps complete slowed the action,
but Pitkat ran the final 12 laps of the race with no challenge from Frank
Ruocco to take down the victory. Rounding out the top-5 behind Pitkat and
Ruocco was Keith Rocco, Kenny Horton, and Eric Berndt.
The Hartford Courant reported that the Arute family that operates
the speedway was currently embroiled in some serious in fighting. Some of
the children of former track owner Jack Arute Sr. claim they are owed a
financial sum from the Speedway. Wayne Arute, David Arute, Rob Arute, Danny
Arute and Heidi Howarth have filed a claim in Hartford Superior Court
against Mark Arute, his wife and track vice president Lisa Arute, track
president Jack Arute Jr. and Stafford Motor Speedway. Jack Arute Sr. died on
April 3, 2006. The Arutes had owned and operated the Stafford Motor Speedway
In NASCAR Whelen All-American Series action at the Waterford
Speedbowl Jeff Pearl annexed his fifth win of the season in the SK Modified
35 lap feature. Pearl took the lead on lap five from Frank Mucciacciaro Jr
and was able to hold Dennis Gada at bay in the closing laps. Rob Janovic
finished third. Mucciacciaro and Tyler Chadwick rounded out the top five.
Veteran Nokie Fornoro needed only a record six minutes and eight
seconds to win the caution-free 25-lap Northeastern Midget Association
feature. It was Fornoro's first Speedbowl win since 1985. Point leader Bruce
Thomas Jr. prevailed in the 30-lap Late Model feature. Other winners were
Dwayne Dorr (20-lap Sportsman) and Randy Churchill Jr. (Mini Stock 20
lapper). It was the first-ever win for Churchill.
In Busch Series racing in Montreal Canada Marcos Ambrose should
have won the race. Robby Gordon insisted he did. In the end, it was Kevin
Harvick who celebrated the victory in the inaugural Busch race in Canada. It
was a controversial finish that thrilled the crowd, infuriated NASCAR and
jeopardized Gordon's participation in the Nextel Cup race at Pocono Raceway.
Gordon refused to forfeit his position in the NAPA Auto Parts 200 in
Montreal when ordered to by NASCAR late in the race and officials said he
intentionally knocked Ambrose out of the race, and then refused to pull off
the track as ordered. He also celebrated as if he had won - behavior that is
expected to earn him a suspension before the Nextel Cup event at Pocono. The
finish capped a wild final few laps that heated up when Gordon began
charging through the field to the front, where Ambrose seemed to be heading
to his first NASCAR victory. Gordon was second on a restart with four laps
to go, and a multi-car accident brought out a caution. Gordon passed Ambrose
at the same time as the accident to take the lead, but Ambrose spun him to
reclaim it seconds later. Gordon was idling sideways as the field roared by
him, but he raced back to the front under yellow and gave Ambrose a
retaliatory bump. He then tried to move into the lead because he thought he
was in first - or at worst, second - when the caution came out. NASCAR
instead ruled he was 13th, based on where Gordon was when he righted his car
following the spin from Ambrose. He vehemently refused to move back, and
NASCAR warned him they would not score him if he didn't forfeit his
position. When the race resumed with three laps to go, Gordon was still
holding second place but immediately spun Ambrose to take the lead. NASCAR
then ordered him off the track. He refused that order, too, and led the
field around the course for the final three laps. But NASCAR refused to
acknowledge him, and waved the black flag at him every time he crossed the
line. He finished 18th - based on the amount of laps he completed before he
was disqualified - but Gordon celebrated as if he won by doing victory
burnouts at the same time Harvick did Gordon wasn't being scored and Ambrose
had faded back to seventh after being spun by Gordon. It put Andy Pilgrim
into the lead, but Harvick raced his way past him and took Montreal native
Patrick Carpentier with him.
In Nextel Cup racing Kurt Busch's winless drought is over. Busch
dominated Pocono Raceway from the opening lap on Sunday and raced his way
back into championship contention, giving himself a perfect belated birthday
gift: a trip to Victory Lane. A day after he turned 29, Busch snapped a
51-race losing skid that lifted him into the 11th and final spot of the
Chase for the Nextel Cup standings with five races left until the
championship races start. Busch, who had surged to 13th in the standings
entering the Pennsylvania 500, led all but 25 laps and made his second
career Pocono victory look easy. The 175 laps led was a Pocono record. The
race didn't include Robby Gordon, who was suspended by NASCAR early Sunday
morning for his conduct at the Busch Series race in Montreal a day before.
Earnhardt was second and Denny Hamlin, who swept both races at Pocono last
year, finished third. Points leader Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson rounded
out the top five.
Last year, 2011, the NASCAR
Whelen Modified Tour traveled to Long Island for the Lighthouse Mission 200
at the Riverhead (N.Y.) Raceway on Saturday, July 30. Justin Bonsignore
converted his home-track advantage into his first NASCAR Whelen Modified
Tour victory. The 23-year-old from Holtsville, N.Y., drove away with the
Lighthouse Mission 200 Saturday at Riverhead Raceway.
Bonsignore, who started on the outside pole of the 175 lap event,
took the lead from pole sitter Howie Brode on lap 18 of the slam-bang event
that produced 11 caution periods for 100 laps. Todd Szegedy finished second,
followed by Ron Silk, Ryan Preece and Doug Coby. Rowan Pennink rebounded
from an early wreck to finish sixth. Jamie Tomaino, Patrick Emerling, Bobby
Santos and Richie Pallai rounded out the top 10. The finish allowed Silk to
take the points lead by five over Pennink with nine races remaining.
Fourteen of the original 28 starters finished on the lead lap.
Among the notables who were down laps were Ted Christopher who started
fourth and ended up seventeenth after an accident, Mike Stefanik completed
only 85 laps, finishing 22nd and was listed as having a radio problem? Pole
sitter Brode was eliminated on lap 69 after an accident as was Eric Rudolph.
Other accident victims were Bryon Chew, Donny Lia and George Brunnhoelzl
The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour now heads to Connecticut, Aug. 5
for the Town Fair Tire 150 at Stafford (Conn.) Motor Speedway.
With all that has been written about the recent disqualification of Ryan
Newman at Loudon its plain to see that no one will admit that they actually
cheated. In reality they did, as a matter of fact Newman and his team
attempted to steal money that many teams of the Whelen Modified Tour Series
desperately need. The main thing is, they got cough and paid the price,
In Thursday Night Thunder action at the Thompson Speedway the Mini
Stocks took top billing with the running of the annual Mini Stock Northern
Challenge. Danny Field continued his winning ways in the regular weekly
division portion of the Challenge. Mark Panaroni scored the victory in the
Mini Stock Northern Tour (MSNT) leg of the challenge. Chad Baxter scored one
for the ‘home team’ as the overall winner of the Mini Stock Northern Tour
In regular NASCAR Whelen All-American Series action, Danny Cates
held back some stiff competition to score his first Sunoco Modified victory
of the season. Larry Gelinas won a barnburner in the Super Late Models. Rick
Gentes was back to form in the Late Models; scoring the feature win. A
dominating performance in the Limited Sportsman found Scott Sundeen in
victory lane. What a difference a week made for TIS Modified winner Glenn
Boss of Danielson, CT.
With five laps remaining, Keith Rocco had caught the back bumper of
Cates while Woody Pitkat ran tight to Rocco’s bumper. Exiting turn four
Pitkat could get a run on Rocco but could not get the run up onto the
straightaway. Cates entered heavy lapped traffic with two laps to go. The
lead trio was nose-to-tail. Coming to the checkers, none of the cars would
step out of line. Cates crossed the stripe for his first win of the season.
Rocco finished second over Pitkat. In the closing laps, Rick Fuller was able
to get by Ryan Preece for fourth. Preece had to settle for fifth.
The Stafford Motor Speedway management cancelled Friday night's
races because of impending rain.
At the Waterford Speedbowl Keith Rocco made it five in a row, nine
for the season, in SK Modified action at the shoreline oval. Jeff Smith
claimed his second win of the year in the Bob Valenti Auto Mall Late Model
feature, Al Stone III scored his fourth win of the year in the Street Stocks
and Chris Williams found victory lane following a late race incident in the
Mini Stocks. Keith Botehlo of North Attleboro, MA was the NEMA Midget winner
in a special Shane Hammond Memorial event, while Andy Barrows of New
Ipswich, NH took the counterpart NEMA Lite feature win.
In the 35 lap SK Modified feature Glenn Pressel took the early lead
from his pole starting position. The action was hot from the drop of the
green flag and by lap-3 contact was made in turn three among several cars,
resulting in Joe Perry getting crossed up into the infield and Nichole
Morgillo to become disabled on the backchute of lap-4 with suspension damage
to her machine, drawing the first caution flag.
Tyler Chadwick raced around the outside of Pressel on the restart,
bringing Rocco ahead in the outside lane up to second position. Caution was
back out on lap-5 after Randy Churchill and Perry both got together on the
frontstretch ending with Perry disabled in turn one. Tight racing between
Chadwick, Rocco and third place Rob Janovic ensued on the next stretch of
green flag racing through lap-11. During that time, Rocco dogged Chadwick
who defended against each attempt. Rocco made a stellar move entering turn
three on lap-11 to challenge the inside of Chadwick and powered ahead off
turn four to lead the lap. Matt Gallo spun off the backstretch as the field
raced lap-12 to return the race under caution with Rocco scored as the new
Janovic’s top run ended on lap-13 when a flat right rear tire sent
him spinning in turn two, creating another yellow situation. Rocco restarted
well to get out front for an extended run of green flag racing. He distanced
himself ahead of a battle for second between Chadwick, Tom Abele Jr. and
Kyle James. Chadwick ultimately claimed the spot in the final ten laps, and
had enough to keep with but not challenge Rocco. They went that way to the
finish with Rocco taking his fifth consecutive win by a car length over
Chadwick. Abele held off Mark Bakaj over the closing laps to take third,
while Bakaj had to make a great save exiting the final corner to claim
fourth. James was fifth.
The Valenti Modified Racing Series was scheduled to complete a
recently started event at the Stafford Motor Speedway. Impending rain forced
Stafford to pull the plug on the event. In some sad news VMRS Director John
Hoyt passed away on Friday.
The Bowman-Gray Stadium in Winston-Salem, NC was the scene of twin
50 lap NASCAR Modified action. In the first Modified race, Jonathan Brown
took the lead from Burt Myers with a bump on Lap 43 and led the final seven
laps for his first win of the year. Randy Butner won the second 50-lap
Modified Division race Saturday night for his first win at Bowman Gray since
2007. Butner won the second race after starting second in the Madhouse
Scramble draw. Kevin Wilson started on the pole and finished ninth. Butner
had to hold off Danny Bohn, who finished second, and points leader Burt
Myers, who finished third in the second race and second in the first. Burt
Myers came all the way from 16th to finish third in the second race. Myers
had to avoid a crash between Jason Myers and Joseph Brown on Lap 35 of 50.
Joseph Brown got out of his car, walked down the front straightaway and held
a fist toward Jason Myers' car. Myers swerved toward Brown, but nothing more
came of it. Also, Burt Myers had to avoid a crash between Austin Pack and
Tim Brown on Lap 36. Through it all, Burt Myers moved into third place.
In Sprint Cup racing, Paul Menard became NASCAR’s newest first-time
winner with an upset victory at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. In Nationwide
Series racing, Brad Keselowski stayed close to the leaders all night and
then got the luck he needed when a late accident tightened the field and he
ran strong on the two green-white-checkered laps at the end to win the
NASCAR Kroger 200.
That’s about it for this week from 11 Gardner Drive, Westerly, and
R.I.02891. Ring my chimes at 401-596-5467.
Phil Smith has been a
columnist for Speedway Scene and various
other publications for over 3 decades.
This week are several vintage racing photos
SpeedwayLineReport.com & Dave Dyke's
Click on Photo for Full Sized
Looking Back Archive
Smith / Looking Back A Bit