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   The Chrome Horn - NASCAR Whelen All-American Series



Speedweeks Modified Night 6
02/23/13 - Championship  Night

New Smyrna Speedway

Polly Reid

The final night of the 47th World Series of Asphalt Racing at New Smyrna Speedway crowned a champion in the modified division and a second trip to victory lane in a week for one team.

Chuck Hossfeld of Lockport, NY put an exclamation point on his trip to New Smyrna Speedway with a dominate win in the 35 lap feature crossing the finish line several car lengths over the field while Woody Pitkat crossed for second in the final event with Andy Seuss third, Patrick Emerling fourth and Jimmy Zacharias fifth.

By virtue of taking the green and completing one circuit, Woody Pitkat of Stafford, CT in the Hill Enterprises modified clenched the 2013 World Series of Asphalt Racing Championship modified title.

I never thought this could happen, said Pitkat on his first trip to New Smyrna Speedway. We wanted to come down here and work on our stuff, gel the team and get ready for the north. This is just a dream come true- to come down here and win the first night out, win the John Blewett III Memorial and then again the night after that weve had a really stout car every night. Hats off to all these guys- Roger Hill I know hes looking down on us, Sandra Hill whose home working, Coors Light, the Chris Kopec clan, the Hillbilly crew, my friend Mike- this is a dream come true.

Pitkat closed out his first visit to New Smyrna Speedway with three wins including the John Blewett III Memorial 76 lap event. Like Ive said before, I feel like Ive succeeded in everything Ive been in- but not these cars and Ive been down on myself for that. I want to prove to myself that Im a force to be reckoned with on the Tour- win races and one day, compete for a championship.

Hossfeld ended his trip to the half-mile banked oval by putting his car in victory lane with a dominating performance. Hossfeld was a contender every time he hit the track setting fast time three nights and collected a total of two wins. We had a great week, said Hossfeld. We had a couple of setbacks- I let the guys down with the wrong gear in the car, that cost us a chance at a championship. I want to congratulate the Hillbilly Race Team, they are real gentlemen, just a great bunch of guys and Im happy for them. Our week was great- we didnt win all the races but we were there for each and every one. We worked on getting our car better and better and basically, we have a perfect car. I appreciate all the fans coming down and I appreciate all the work my guys did this week.

While Hossfeld set fast time for the final 35 feature event, after the top three inverted for the start it was Pitkat on the pole with Emerling, Hossfeld, Seuss and Zacharias the top five.

Emerling got the edge on the field becoming the first leader of the night with Hossfeld taking over second, Pitkat, Seuss settling into single file.

Hossfeld made a decisive move on lap five passing Emerling to become the new leader and what would become the final leader of the night.

Caution on lap 14 for Zacharias stopped on the frontstretch - Hossfeld brought the field around for the restart with Emerling, Pitkat, Seuss and Al Emmarino the top five. Officials called for another restart and Hossfeld did not waiver as he led the field once again to the green.
The top four, Hossfeld, Emerling, Seuss and Pitkat broke from the pack by lap 22 and by the 25th circuit, Hossfeld led while Seuss moved into second, Pitkat third and Emerling fourth.

Pitkat made his move for second with fewer than five to go and when the final checkers waved at the Asphalt World Series of Racing for the modifieds, Hossfeld crossed as the winner with Pitkat in second and the new champion. Seuss, Emerling, Zacharias, Danny Watts, Al Emmarino, Dylan Kopec and J.R. Bertuccio completed the field.

I dont get to race with Chuck a lot but when I do Ive always looked up to him, said Pitkat. Im glad to see he won tonight. Andy Seuss, he did an awesome job- he didnt run the first couple of nights so I think we had an advantage on him but he was fast here at the end and Patrick, he was here all week, he got fast here its just awesome to be able to run here with these guys- I look forward to doing it again.

Pitkat teamed up with Hill Enterprises early in his modified career and after parting ways, Hill and Pitkat reunited just before the final Loudon race in 2012 and have been working to come together ever since. Its even more satisfying because I started on the Tour with this team- they pretty much gave me my first shot at the Tour. To be able to part ways, have me get better and have them call me to come back, it is very rewarding. Its a real confidence booster for us getting everyone to gel.

While it was Pitkats first time competing in the World Series of Asphalt Racing, it has been a part of the February routine for David Hill who could not recall exactly the first year they came to New Smyrna. Me and my dad used to come down here and do a couple of nights, said David. Then I talked him into coming here and doing the full deal with Flemke - its been a long time.

Hill was thoughtful about their success at New Smyrna and working with Pitkat.

All I did was put Woody back in the seat - Chris Kopec, he deserves as much credit as I do. Woody, hes ready now to be a Tour driver. Its a relationship thats meant to be back together, its good.

The 2013 season is fast approaching, only seven weeks to the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour season opener at Thompson International Speedway. Were going to do a southern race then focus on the northern Tour only, said Hill. I think if we only do that, it will give me more time to be really prepared to run for a championship. Im excited- I wish my father was here but I know hes watching. This is a very good high to go to Thompson with. Confidence, thats what Woody needed hes fast, he won- he dominated. We had a very good Speedweeks, even Daytona was good. With five to go we had a shot to win what more could you ask for.

We want to thank all those who made our trip successful and hope you enjoyed the Chrome Horn coverage of the World Series of Asphalt Racing at New Smyrna Speedway. As Woody put it, we all got the rust shaken off. See you in April.

Source: Polly Reid / TheChromeHorn.com
Posted: February 24, 2013

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