The main event in New England last weekend was the running of the
re-scheduled Blast Off at the Waterford Speedbowl on Saturday and Sunday.
Literally tons of cars from New England and Long Island were at the
Connecticut shoreline oval last weekend. In total, 13 race divisions saw
action on the three-eighths mile oval, with seven feature races run Saturday
Keith Rocco hit a home run as he went three for three on Sunday as he won
the SK Modified 64 lap Blast Off, the Late Model feature and the 100 lap
Valenti Modified Racing Series 100. Rocco, clearly the class of the field in
all three divisions, took the lead in the 64 lap SK Modified feature on lap
10. He started on the pole in the 100 lap VMRS event and led every lap.
Following Rocco in the SK 64 lapper was Craig Lutz, Kyle James, Ted
Christopher and Shawn Thibeault. Chris Pasteryak finished second to Rocco in
the Valenti Mods, Todd Szegedy finished third with Jeff Rocco, fourth and
Max Zachem, fifth. Sixth through tenth were Mike Holdridge, Eric Goodale,
Anthony Nocella, Todd Annarummo and Mike Willis, Jr. In the Late Model
feature Bruce Thomas finished second with Jason Palmer, third. Glenn Boss
and Vince Esposito rounded out the top five. Sixth through twelfth were Jeff
Smith, Anthony Ryan, Nick Sowa, Joe Gada, Mike Sweeney, Rich Duranti and
Qualifying for Sunday’s six big events took place Saturday afternoon.
Leading the way were the Rocco brothers, as Jeff and Keith each picked up
heat race wins in the Valenti Modified Racing series. Ted Christopher won
the Series’ third heat race while Justin Bonsignore won the 15-lap
consolation race. Jeff Rocco followed up his strong Valenti Modified run by
earning pole position honors for Sunday’s NASCAR Whelen All-American Series
SK Modified® division’s 64-lap race which commemorates the track’s number of
years in operation. He won his qualifying race in that division as well,
joining Christopher and Todd Ceravolo as winners in the three qualifiers.
In features run on Saturday night at Waterford, Rick Williams scored a
first-ever victory in the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series SK Light
Modified race. Dylan Izzo continued his domination of the INEX Legend Cars
division winning for the second straight week while Zach Thomas and Jon
Porter won for consecutive weeks in the X-Car and Super X-Cars,
respectively. In touring series races, P.J. Stergios of Candia, NH won the
NEMA Lite feature and Chris Turbush of Riverhead, NY won the New England
Truck Series race. Oakdale’s Derek Debbis checkered the INEX Bandolero
feature for the youth racing class.
There were 33 Valenti Modified Racing Series Modifieds on hand. The SK
Modified car count totaled 25. The next event for the Valenti Modified
Racing Series is a 100 lapper at the Monadnock Speedway in Winchester, NH.
The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Series was off this past weekend as
competitors make preparations for the upcoming Spring Sizzler at the
Stafford Motor Speedway on April 27. While most of the Modified teams
enjoyed the weekend off their southern counter parts were racing at the
Langley Speedway in Virginia.
George Brunnhoelzl III led the final 67 laps of the 150 lap event after
passing points leader Andy Seuss, and survived a green-white-checkered
finish for his first win of the season. Twice in the first three races,
Brunnhoelzl finished second to Seuss. It also extended Brunnhoelzl's tour
record for career wins to 21. Seuss came home second and David Calabrese was
third. Luke Fleming and Ryan Preece rounded out the top five. Seuss took the
lead on Lap 62 from Ryan Preece, who won the Coors Light Pole Award earlier
in the day. Burt Myers was sixth, followed by rookies Bobby Measmer Jr. and
Joe Ryan Osborne, Jason Myers and Gary Putnam. There were 17 cars on hand.
The NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour will be back in action this coming
Saturday, April 19 with the Bunny Hop 150 at Caraway Speedway in Sophia,
On the speedway stock market scene last week all three speedway stocks
had negative results. The International Speedway Corporation took the
biggest dip as they dropped 1.04 to 32.00. Speedway Motorsports dropped 0.19
to 17.92 and Dover Entertainment dropped dropped 0.11 to 2.29. NASCAR Cup
sponsor Sprint dropped 1.01 to 8.25 and NASCAR tire supplier Goodyear
dropped 0.34 to 25.21 while NASCAR fuel supplier Sunoco (Energy Transfer)
went up 0.55 to 55.00. The car builders were all negative for the week.
Toyota took the big dip as they dropped 6.54 to 104.89 while General Motors
dropped 2.89 to 31.93 and Ford dropped 0.51 to 15.63. In the home
improvement sector, Home Depot dropped 3.02 to 75.70 and Lowes dropped 2.12
to 46.31. In the area of sponsors stocks, Coca-Cola went up 1.91 to 81.06
while Dupont dropped 1.26 to 66.09, Target dropped 2.23 to 58.90, Aarons
Rentals dropped 0.54 to 30.23 and FedEx dropped 3.13 to 131.23.
On the tube this week:
Wednesday, April 16
2:30 AM, NASCAR Now, ESPN2
3:00 AM, NSCS Darlington race, re-air, FS1
6:00 PM, NASCAR America, NBCSN
Thursday, April 17
4:00 PM, NASCAR Race Hub, FS1
5:00 PM, NASCAR America, NBCSN
Friday, April 18
2:00 AM, NASCAR Now, ESPN2
4:00 PM, NASCAR Race Hub, FS1
NASCAR's Sprint Cup, Nationwide Series and Truck Series are off this weekend
to observe Easter.
That’s about it for this week from 11 Gardner Drive, Westerly, and
R.I.02891. Ring my chimes at 401-596-5467. E-mail:
Phil Smith has been a
columnist for Speedway Scene and various
other publications for over 3 decades.
Smith / Champ Trail